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Children's and Young Adult Literature (Education): Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Teaching Resources

Acknowledgement to Country

We acknowledge and pay respect to the traditional owners of the land on which we meet  (the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation). It is upon their ancestral lands that the University of Sydney is built.

As we share our own knowledge, teaching, learning, and research practices within this University may we also pay respect to the knowledge embedded forever within the Aboriginal Custodianship of Country. 

Evaluating resources, selection criteria and protocols

Syllabus, Curriculum documents, Resource guides

Featured Websites

More Resource Guides and Protocols & Strategy documents

Blackwords from Austlit

BlackWords: The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Writers and Storytellers

This database and teaching resource is part of Austlit: Australian Literature Gateway. BlackWords is an invaluable resource for the English classroom and supports the incorporation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives  across the curriculum particularly within the Humanities, Social Sciences and within Educational contexts. BlackWords also includes  BlackWords Trails and Teaching Resources.

Look at the page called Teaching with BlackWords

1967 Referendum and the Census

Reading Australia

Freely available, Reading Australia was created by the not-for-profit Copyright Agency with the goal of making it easier for teachers, through their passion and skills, to spread a love for Australian texts. 

There is a Teacher's Corner on the website; also many of the secondary-level titles are also accompanied by essays written by eminent authors, academics and critics. There are teacher guides for primary texts.

In the Video section you will find interviews with and speeches made by authors. Twenty titles have had AustLit trails created for them.

Sample list of titles with teacher resource and/or /essay on the Reading Australia site:

Alfred's War by Rachel Bin Salleh

Bran Nue Dae by Jimmy Chi

Journey to the Stone Country by Alex Miller

Yirruwa Yirrilikenuma-langwa/When We Go Walkabout by Rhoda Dugururru Lalara

Big Rain Coming by Katrina Germein

My Girragundii by Meme McDonald and Boori Monty Pryor

Do Not Go Around the Edges by Daisy Utemorrah

Websites and resource portals

The following sites offer teaching resources, lesson plans & videos.

ABC Education ResourcesScootle‚ÄčSlideshareTeacherTubeTES  and Vimeo, a video sharing database

Library collections and resources

Image:The Southern Toss by artilst Adam HillImage preview

This Library guide assists students and researchers with finding appropriate resources for teaching practice and research; and with embedding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives across the curriculum.

Library Websites

The Guide helps you locate material using both Library catalogues and other research resources. The Koori Centre Research Library also includes many children's books which represent  historical changes in the writing and illustration of books about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People. Use the University of Sydney Library catalogue to search for items in the Koori Centre Library collection.

The University of Sydney Library Catalogue has a collection of children's ebooks, one example is Remembering Lionsville [electronic resource] : My family story. Recent ebooks from Magabala are also available via the Library catalogue. 

Council, State and National Libraries

Local council libraries will have picture book collections, YA fiction collections and children's non fiction collections. 

State Libraries frequently include collections and digital collections that relate to Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander communities within their states. Resources are also created for teachers and teaching.

State Library of New South Wales. Indigenous Services & Collections

State Library of Victoria Koori Victoria

State Library of Queensland. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queensland  includes virtual books

State Library of Western Australia Guide to Indigenous Information.

National Library of Australia. Where can I find information about Indigenous Australians?


Resources for People & Events


Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS)

Their Library catalogue MURA is an invaluable resource for researching many aspects of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives and contexts. Look for materials in the MURA catalogue then check if the University Library has the items or request them on Bonus+

See also AIATSIS Aboriginal history resources


Publisher websites increasingly provide additional resources for many of their publications.

Magabala provide Teacher's notes for many of their recent books, a new book may sometimes be accompanied a soundcloud interview with an author.

Video clips of events such as this one from One Day Hill publishers  that relate to the story told in the book 'From little things big things grow'.

Look up the Honey Ant Readers on Youtube and you will find videos of the stories such as Nana Dig.