With Australia Day just around the corner, we have compiled a list of Australiana resources including non-fiction, fiction and picture books, as well as other useful teaching resources such as interactive websites and DVDs.
Australia Day marks the anniversary of the arrival of the First Fleet, but it also presents us with the opportunity to reflect on our history, culture and people. This year, to commemorate Australia Day, we have included a variety of resources that look at these aspects of our country. It provides a small snippet from a wide array of resources that are available to be shared with students for Australia Day. For more resources, use the SCIS catalogue to browse by subject, using subject headings such as ‘Australia Day’, ‘Australian history’, ‘Australiana’, or ‘Australian stories’.
You can also check out our Australia Day blog post from last year for a list of resources that look at the clash between European settlers and the Aboriginal peoples.
What’s Australia Day All About? [Online video] (SCIS no 1748373)
A short video suitable for primary school students, What’s Australia Day All About looks at how people commemorate the national holiday, and different perspectives that are held about the day. The video encourages interaction and reflection by concluding with a trivia question.
Aussie Clue Cracker [Website] (SCIS no 1748506)
Aussie Clue Cracker is an interactive online game encouraging students to learn more about unique Australian icons, symbols and events. Users are shown 12 images that contribute to our national culture, and are given 11 clues to guess the correct answer.
Australia Day : History [Website] (SCIS no 1748485)
This informative website developed by the Australia Day Council looks at the history of the national holiday, and how and why it has been both celebrated and challenged.
Our World : Bardi Jaawi : Life at Ardiyooloon by One Arm Point Remote Community School (SCIS no 1484264)
This vibrantly illustrated picture book, written by students of One Arm Point Remote Community School, is a great resource that invites the reader into their community, sharing the culture and traditions of the Bardi Jaawi people.
A Concise History of Australia by Stuart Macintyre (SCIS no 1741554)
This book provides a concise, accessible overview of Australian history from our early history to today, including our social, political and economic history.
True Blue? : On Being Australian edited by Peter Goldsworthy (SCIS no 1347615)
Suitable for senior school students, True Blue? exposes students to a range of perspectives on Australian identity, and will encourage readers to reflect on what it means to be Australian – or if there is a concrete definition at all.
Australians All : A History of Growing up, From the Ice Age to the Apology by Nadia Wheatley, illustrations by Ken Searle (SCIS no 1731022)
Nadia Wheatley interweaves over 70 real-life stories into the book, mixing her own narrative with biographies and first-hand accounts from various Australians in time, including well-known individuals such as Eddie Mabo.
Samson and Delilah [DVD] by Warwick Thornton (SCIS no 1475514)
Directed by Indigenous filmmaker Warwick Thornton, Samson and Delilah looks at the lives of two teenagers growing up in a remote community in central Australia, and the struggles as they leave their community and head to Alice Springs.
Australian Backyard Explorer by Peter Macinnis (SCIS no 1420539)
Australian Backyard Explorer, winner of the 2010 Children’s Book Council of Australia Children’s Book of the Year Award, tells the remarkable stories of individuals who explored the vast Australian landscape in the first 120 years of European settlement.
Australian Story : An Illustrated Timeline by Tania McCartney (SCIS no 1547510)
Australian Story places key moments in Australian history on a timeline, from the formation of our country and its flora and fauna to modern life in Australia. Filled with illustrations and images taken from the National Library of Australia’s digital collection, this is a striking visual account of Australian history.
The Unlikely Story of Bennelong and Phillip by Michael Sedunary (SCIS no 1698767)
This book tells the story of the friendship between Captain Arthur Phillip who led the First Fleet, and Bennelong, an Aboriginal man, despite coming from two very different worlds.
Why I Love Australia by Bronwyn Bancroft (SCIS no 1712314)
Bronwyn Bancroft visually celebrates the vast and diverse Australian landscape – both natural and man-made, expressing her deep feelings for the country.
Let us know your favourite books and resources to share with students for Australia Day – or books you love to read yourself.
Image: James Cridland (CC BY 2.0)