Reconciliation in Education in NSW

What we do for educators

Reconciliation NSW has developed a new program to highlight the importance of Reconciliation in Education. We offer online workshops, access to lesson plans and activities and a downloadable reconciliation in education kit for educators to begin to access tools and resources.

Join or request an online professional development workshop for educators

We provide workshops to educators across NSW.  If your school, ELS or AECG team would like to join our next scheduled workshop, or if you would like Reconciliation NSW to run a professional development session or student based workshop online for your school, AECG or regional education working group, please contact us schools@reconciliationnsw.org.au

Where does reconciliation fit in the Australian Curriculum?

Reconciliation is a critical and ongoing process with education the key to positive change.

The Australian Curriculum sets expectations for what all Australian students should be taught, regardless of where they live in Australia or their background. Included in the Australian Curriculum are three cross-curriculum priorities, one of which is Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures priority provides the opportunity for all young Australians to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures, knowledge traditions and holistic world views. This knowledge will enrich all learners’ ability to participate positively in Australia’s journey towards reconciliation through a deepening understanding and connection with the world’s oldest continuous living cultures.

What is Reconciliation in Education?

It is important to recognise the relationship and yet distinctions between ‘Aboriginal education’ and ‘reconciliation in education.’ That is, as well as focusing on strategies/pedagogies for supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students’ learning, strong approaches to reconciliation in education simultaneously focus on teaching all students and staff about the importance of reconciliation, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions.

Focus Areas 1.4 and 2.4 of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers identify what teachers need to know and be able to do in order to teach Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and to teach all students about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages, history and culture.

Focus Area 1.4: Strategies for teaching Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander students Focus Area 2.4: Understand and respect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to promote reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians These focus areas presents a great opportunity for Australian teachers to engage in this important part of our shared national identity, however many teachers are unsure of how to meaningfully address them.

Our program provides NSW schools with a mechanism and resource to increase the capacity and confidence of teachers to embed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives in the classroom and implement reconciliation initiatives at the local level.

Download our Reconciliation in Education Kit 

Reconciliation NSW invites your school or early learning service to progress reconciliation by engaging with our Reconciliation in Education Kit.

    1. Welcome
    2.  2020 Caring for Country theme activity
    3. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander significant dates classroom poster
    4. Reconciliation in Education reading and resource list
    5. Introduction to Reconciliation Action Plans (RAPs) for schools and early learning services
    6. Narragunnawali Guide to Respectful and Inclusive Terminology
    7. Aboriginal Nations and Languages Map in NSW & ACT
    8. Welcome to Country and Acknowledgement of Country guide

We partner with the Narragunnawali program to showcase national reconciliation in education tools

Reconciliation Australia’s  Narragunnawali program supports all schools and early learning services in Australia to foster a high level of knowledge and pride in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions.  The Narragunnawali online platform is free to access and provides practical ways to introduce meaningful reconciliation initiatives in the classroom, around the school and with the community. Through the Narragunnawali platform, schools and early learning services can develop a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), and teachers and educators can access professional leaning and curriculum resources to support the implementation of reconciliation initiatives.


Tools to support reconciliation in your classroom:

Narragunnawali subject guides to support your classroom teaching with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander knowledge, understandings and achievements.

Activities and classroom resources around a huge range of topics at the Narragunnawali website.

Get started on creating a Reconciliation Action Plan in your school or service.

We run the annual Schools Reconciliation Challenge Program

The Schools Reconciliation Challenge is an annual writing and art competition for young people across NSW and the ACT. The challenge meets the objectives of the K-6 and 7-10 syllabus.
Every year, we ask students to create artworks and stories inspired by a theme, and to reflect on what reconciliation means to them.
The pieces are submitted, culminating in exhibitions and regional tour.
Art and writing based classroom activities and resources are located on the Schools Reconciliation Challenge website.

NAIDOC2020 Event

Growing up Aboriginal in NSW: Then and Now

Reconciliation NSW has partnered with Kinchela Boys Home Aboriginal Corporation (KBHAC) to deliver a Virtual Living Library for (primary/secondary) schools in NSW as part of #NAIDOC2020:

Growing up Aboriginal in NSW:

Then and Now

For Primary School Classrooms

Growing up Aboriginal in NSW:

Then and Now

For Secondary School Classrooms

Date: Tuesday 24 November 2020

Time: 1:30pm – 2:30 pm

Date: Tuesday 24 November 2020

Time: 10:00 am – 11:00 am

Join us in an interactive Zoom session where students and teachers will have the opportunity to have a conversation with a “Living Library,” Uncle Richard Campbell, child #28, a Stolen Generations survivor from the Kinchela Boys Home, and with local Aboriginal student representatives from Macleay Vocational College.

Learners will be able to engage with Aboriginal perspectives, ask questions and learn about the experiences of our presenters growing up as Aboriginal people in the past and now, this free video conference brings our Living Library experts into your classroom.

Registrants will be sent an information package that includes a video link to be viewed in the classroom prior to the event, to allow teachers to prepare their students for a wide ranging and personal conversation with our Living Library subjects. Additional teaching resources will also be  provided that can be used following the event to supplement the classroom experience and link it to the Australian curriculum.

Questions will be posed to the speakers by a moderator. You may pose your questions to schools@reconciliationnsw.org.au in advance, or via the chat function on the day.

This event is for classrooms in NSW. Each session is limited to 100 classrooms/schools.

This event has been provided through NAIDOC Local Grant funding, administered by the Commonwealth of Australia’s National Indigenous Australians Agency.

We hope you will register for our event!

For Secondary School Classrooms

For Primary School Classrooms

The Reconciliation NSW and KBHAC teams

This event is for classrooms in NSW. Each session is limited to 100 classrooms/schools.

Include First Nations content in your lessons each week

The #PlanningWithWingaruAndMrJ Challenge is all about encouraging educators to look at ways they can incorporate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives into the classrooms each week for term 4 2020.

Join us for this challenge and consider what is one thing you could do to include First Nations content in your lessons each week. It could be as simple as choosing an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander story, artefact or visual as a stimulus for a lesson.

Sign up to the Challenge to receive weekly emails for inspiration, support and highlights from the community.

A Wingaru initiative

Read our Reconciliation in Education newsletters

Reconciliation in Education November 2020    News about the finalists in the Schools Reconciliation Challenge, New resources from the ABC, Books and readings, articles and more.

Reconciliation in Education August 2020 – Free online workshops from the Powerhouse Museum, Melbourne Writers Festival and how to build inclusive education.

Reconciliation in Education April 2020 – Showcasing online resources for teachers, parents and students

On Tuesday, June 23, 2020 Reconciliation NSW and Uncle Jimmy Smith presented this webinar co-hosted by Reconciliation Australia’s Narragunnawali Team.

“This webinar is such a wonderful experience
to be a part of. Thank you!”       Webinar participant, Early Learning Teacher

“Thank you so much. I feel so supported
having access to these resources.” Webinar participant, Primary School Teacher.
Find out more about the presenters and content of our first collaborative webinar with Reconciliation Australia’s Narragunnawali program, which includes professional development, cultural competence,  understanding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives in the classroom, reconciliation themes and how to activate your school to engage with Reconciliation Action Plans.

Cultural competency: Reconciliation in action

Alanna Raymond is a proud Aboriginal Australian woman, primary teacher and member of Reconciliation Australia’s Narragunnawali team. In this  recent NSW Department of Education SCAN article, Alanna explains cultural competency in the context of education, and suggests practical ways teachers and schools can build cultural competence.

Enjoy these activities for kids

Our friends at Reconciliation SA have created these easy activity sheets for early learning and primary age students for NRW

Our partners at Lendlease have shared these drawings for kids to colour by Kaanju artist Emma Hollingsworth.

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