One of the big topics in year 9 is Australia – the land down under. Western Australia, Tasmania, New South Wales, the Northern Territory, South Australia and Queensland...

... have, of course, a lot to offer. By the end of our unit we came across the native people of Australia. Australia’s Aboriginal people are one of the world’s oldest civilizations. 

In our English class we learned a lot about Aboriginal history and culture, about the oppression of Aboriginal Australians, about living as a teenager in the Pintupi community in the Northern Territories – one of many Aboriginal groups – and we also learned about Adam Goodes, a former professional Australian Rules Football player. He stood up for Aboriginal rights and still fights racism today. 

Aboriginal traditions and the people’s deep spiritual relationship with their land and its animals were often expressed in orally handed down legends and songs. The latter were also often used like maps as the Aboriginals had no written languages. By describing specific landmarks such as rivers, trees, waterholes or stars through melody and rhythm, songlines helped to navigate the country. You just needed to sing the songlines in the right order to find your way across huge distances. Paintings also expressed the knowledge of the landscape and even told stories about hunting events and family gatherings. 

In art class we studied various Aboriginal dot paintings and symbolic patterns before we started our own creative dot painting journey. Admittedly, we rather travelled ways of relaxation by trying out the dot painting technique. We realized that focusing on accuracy, shape and colour helps to calm down and relax. So instead of telling a story through dot paintings we experienced a calming technique which might always come in handy. The results speak for themselves.

Text and photos: Anne Tebben  

dot paintings: Tuana, Alex, Timo, Elias, Mass, Lukas (9d)

 Ein fächerübergreifendes Projekt der Klassenstufe 9




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