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Aussie classrooms reviving Aboriginal languages – The News
by aanationtalk onDecember 19, 2012431 Views
December 19, 2012
SYDNEY: In a high-school classroom in western Sydney, teacher Noeleen Lumby is asking her pupils to recall the Aboriginal name for animals that indigenous Wiradjuri people have used for hundreds of years.
As she holds up stuffed toys representing some of Australia’s native wildlife, including a kangaroo, an emu and a cockatoo, the class of about 25 — many from Vietnamese and Cambodian backgrounds — come to grips with the ancient tongue.
“I like this because you get to learn new skills and you can speak some indigenous language,” said 12-year-old Tien Nguyen. Lumby, who oversees the students as they use their new knowledge to create projects on computers and iPads, is passionate about filling a gaping hole in Australian education — the study of Aboriginal languages. “I think it’s important that the kids learn language and culture at the same time,” she told AFP.