Why is it important to embed an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspective in your program? It is important for you and your team to connect with your reason to fully embrace these inclusions. Consider your own prejudice, bias and education surrounding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
What assumptions do you make about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their culture? What stereotypes do you possibly subconsciously believe about First Nations peoples? How might these impact your ability to encourage positive and inclusive attitudes in every child in your care?
We know that many educators did not receive an authentic truth-telling education themselves. First Nations peoples were often an afterthought. In order to teach First Nations perspectives in the classroom, educators may have to unlearn and reteach themselves, so as not to teach only what they have learnt personally.
As a non-Indigenous educator, you might never have considered these questions – and that’s all right. It’s natural to consider our own historical and cultural perspectives as the only approach. But expanding on those horizons is good for both our personal and professional growth.
For any Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in your centre, exploring their Culture plays a key role in their development, identity and self-esteem, and contributes to the overall well-being of the child.
For non-Indigenous children, embedding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives in their early education experiences is fundamental in creating inclusive and accepting attitudes, and positive race relations. These perspectives are also about celebrating different cultures and the uniqueness of individuals. It is enriching for children to experience the different perspectives and diverse human experiences other cultures can bring to the melting pot (Source).
The instructional materials and activities included as part of this hub are designed to begin to expand your knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives, in order to empower you to engage with your local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community and start to holistically embed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives within your centre’s curriculum.