Testimonials from Science Pathways program participants

Watiyawanu (Mt Liebig), Walungurru (Kintore) and Kiwirrkura students collect small water animals to monitor water quality at Ilpili springs.

"I have seen the powerful way Indigenous Language & Culture (ILC) programs can engage students and empower Aboriginal Assistant Teachers - I never was an advocate when I arrived and only began one at the request of the community. I now know the impact of ILC programs and the positive relationships they engender and build. With the assistance of Science Pathways NT and the Anangu Luritjiku Rangers our interschool (Watiyawanu, Walungurru, Kiwirrkura) 3-day trip to Ilpili springs in Term 3, 2016 provided wide-ranging lessons about country for students in their first language; as did the subsequent creation by Watiyawanu students of a bilingual text about the trip, with the support of linguist Ken Hansen. Myself, Meg Mooney (Tangentyere Council/Science Pathways NT) and Jeff Hulcombe (Central Land Council Anangu Luritjiku Rangers co-ordinator) have been doing school and inter-school bushtrips for around 6 years now. These bushtrips and their follow-up bilingual texts, written by the students with the support of the Assistant Teachers and others, have grown out of our ILC program and our relationships with each other and developed into strong learning experiences."

Larry Kenny, Teaching Principal, Watiyawanu Kuula, October 2016

After the Ilpili springs camp, Watiyawanu students were given photos to prompt writing about the trip. The texts and photos were then made into a booklet.

"I found the booklet on the combined schools camp at Ilpili springs (supported by Science Pathways NT) a fascinating read, full of good education practice – inquiry based learning in particular, as well as learning from experts/elders and experiential learning. Loved the two way language component! Also loved the involvement of the community and experts as well as students from other schools. A very thoughtful and successful piece of work."

Arthur Townsend, Executive Director Schools South, Department of Education, Northern Territory Government, October 2016

Watiyawanu assistant teachers Rita Turner, back left, and Veronica Robertson, back right, with Watiyawanu students at Ilpili springs camp.

"It is really good to work with Meg (Science Pathways NT) to take school kids on bush trips, showing them the country, and make books about these trips. So the school kids can know the rockholes and other places, two ways, when they grow up. It’s good for their minds to know how to write their language and write about their culture."

Rita Turner, Senior Assistant Teacher, Watiyawanu School, November 2016

"The amount of information that the kids find out, talking with the old ladies, language and science, they didn’t even know they were doing school work"

Fifi Harris AIEO, Leonora DHS, 2016

"We got to look at the artefacts from the old days, saw how people made dishes and grinding stones and where they made shields from the trees." (MKK Biodiversity Trip 20-23 September 2016)

Aeishah Muir Student, Leonora DHS, 2016

"What an outstanding achievement this collaboration has been! And with 51 participants from such a broad spectrum, this surely has set the bar in terms of collaboration and potential. This truly is a story to share." Following the Matuwa Kurrara Kurrara Biodiversity Learning on Country experience 20-23 September, 2016

Adriano Truscott Wiluna School Principal, 2016

"When kids go out on country they behave completely differently, they are so engaged and relaxed."

Fifi Harris AIEO, Leonora DHS, 2016

“We took them children out from school to show what the rangers are doing on their trips. The kids learning from elders, when their turn come they can do the same what we been doing.”

Lena Long, Wiluna Ranger, 2016

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