Coming up to Country
Posted on June 30, 2012
Learning about our place: Jessie Webb discusses her involvement with the Maningrida Community Education Centre.
This remarkable experience was part of my work as a member of an interdisciplinary team piloting a health and education program that links to a remote Aboriginal school in the Northern Territory. The Maningrida Community Education Centre (CEC) has developed an innovative teaching program to help address some of the challenges of remote-area teaching: attendance, relevance, meaningfulness, and skill and literacy development. The local Djelk Ranger group, who hold Indigenous Protected Area status over a huge part of the surrounding country, take the students out one day per fortnight for classes ‘on country’. The rangers guide the students through land management techniques, augmenting the students’ existing cultural and local knowledge in environments they know intimately. Back in the classroom, these excursions form the basis of an integrated science, English, and Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) learning program.