Wise Words indigenous materials have been devised to support parents, teachers and clinicians who may find it challenging to teach indigenous content because of concerns that they may not have the knowledge or understanding to ensure that the books, their stories and the complexity of the information is presented in a respectful and appropriate manner.
With thanks to Tara Lewis who kindly edited these resources. Tara Lewis is a Speech Pathologist and member of Speech Pathology Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee. Tara is an Iman woman from the Taroom country of Western Queensland.
The Australian Curriculum has established Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures as a priority. This will ensure that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students are able to see themselves, their identities and their cultures reflected in the curriculum of each of the learning areas. Exposure to these and other indigenous books can build awareness of and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures amongst all Australian children.
USING BOOKS TO ENHANCE A CHILD’S UNDERSTANDING AND INCREASE HIS/HER EXPRESSIVE LANGUAGE
You can use a book to expand a child’s
• Vocabulary (galaxy, mudskippers, feathers, tide, goanna)
• Understanding of concepts (e.g. lucky, fresh, silly, first)
• Ability to understand questions
Two Mates is the true story of the special friendship between two young boys who have grown up together in the coastal town of Broome in Australia’s north-west. The book describes their lives and how each boy recognises the special talents of each other. Jack is Aboriginal and Raf is a non-Aboriginal boy who has spina bifida.
Wise Words Scripts – offer clinicians, teachers and parents readily available questions designed specifically for each book. A script provides a variety of questions at each level of understanding for each page of the book. A teacher or clinician working with a group of children can tailor questions to each child’s language ability.
This script and other available scripts have been based on Marion Blank’s Model of Classroom Language.