Session teaches children how to speak Yorta Yorta language

By Shepparton News

Children had a unique opportunity to learn the Yorta Yorta language at a special NAIDOC Week event yesterday.

Children learned how to understand and speak the language during a storytelling and craft session at Mooroopna’s KidsTown.

Activities in the Park’s school holiday program partnered with author Heidi Knowles to teach children about the Aboriginal language.

Active Living program manager David Booth said the session aimed to broaden people’s knowledge about Shepparton’s indigenous culture.

‘‘There’s so much to celebrate with indigenous history that we feel any opportunity to remind or entrench that in other activities we are doing is a great opportunity,’’ Mr Booth said.

Ms Knowles shared stories with the children and explained the importance of understanding the background of Aboriginal languages.

In the second half of session, children learned about the significance of animals to Aboriginals and then had the opportunity to make paper craft turtles.

The NAIDOC-themed activity was inspired and led by two young indigenous trainees who work with council’s Active Living program.

Mr Booth said it was great to see people in the community celebrating their culture.

‘‘They teach us a lot as colleagues in a day-to-day workplace setting, but the community also now get the opportunity to learn through their work,’’ he said.

This year’s school holiday program included a range of indigenous themed activities to to celebrate the coinciding NAIDOC Week.

Mr Booth said Active Living was looking forward to celebrating NAIDOC Week in the future.

‘‘We are strongly supportive of our local indigenous population and Greater Shepparton are fully committed to indigenous reconciliation,’’ Mr Booth said.