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Victorian Aboriginal Languages

  1. F-2
  2. 3-6
  3. 7-10

Foundation to Level 2

Foundation to Level 2 Description

Students learn about Country/Place and community by interacting with respected community members, by exploring Country/Place, and by engaging with stories, songs and other texts such as videos, maps, and pictures. They learn about the concepts of kin and social groupings.

Students use the language being learnt in classroom interactions, routines and activities, supported by the use of visual...

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Foundation to Level 2 Content Descriptions


Socialising Elaborations
  1. Interact with each other, the teaching team and visiting respected community members, using language and gestures to greet and talk about self and family (VCLVC130)
    1. participating in everyday exchanges, such as greeting and leave taking
    2. interacting with the teaching team and visiting respected community members and community speakers, using appropriate protocols such as respect terms, behaviour and forms of address
    3. introducing and describing self, family, friends, favourite objects and pets, using familiar and modelled language, supported by visual props such as drawings, photos
    4. listening to questions (such as what, who, where) about self, family, friends and immediate environment and responding with words and actions, including gesture
  2. Participate in guided group activities, such as games, songs and simple tasks, using movement and gestures to support understanding and to convey meaning (VCLVC131)
    1. participating in games, tasks and activities that involve turn taking, guessing, matching and choosing objects using modelled questions and responses
    2. participating in action games and songs by matching actions to words
    3. following instructions by moving around or locating objects in the classroom
    4. accompanying respected community members to gather traditional materials, such as nuts, twigs, bark, seeds, shells for use in craft related language activities
    5. working collaboratively on a class performance or activity
    6. working collaboratively to adapt and perform action songs, for example, by changing lyrics, substituting words and phrases based on modelled patterns, rehearsing and performing songs with appropriate gestures and actions
    7. grouping and sorting natural objects from Country/Place, for example, leaves, stones, shells according to culturally appropriate categories
  3. Interact in classroom routines and respond to teacher instructions (VCLVC132)
    1. participating in routine exchanges, such as, asking and answering questions, responding to the class roll, describing the weather, requesting classroom objects, participating in school and class creeds/affirmations
    2. responding to and using routine classroom language, for example, ‘sit down’, ‘stand up’, ‘listen!’ ‘look this way’, ‘tidy up’
    3. following instructions in language related to transition activities, for example, ‘form a circle’, ‘get into groups of three’, ‘put on your hat’, ‘line up’
    4. responding to requests and instructions in verbal and non-verbal ways, such as movement, gesture and action, for example, in class and outdoors, in games and songs, or on visits and excursions
Informing Elaborations
  1. Discover key information about Country/Place by exploring Country/Place and listening to stories from respected community members (VCLVC133)
    1. discovering places in the local area that have Indigenous names, such as streets, suburbs, parks, rivers, public institutions
    2. visiting Country/Place to identify and name key topographical features, for example, creeks, springs, rocky outcrops, estuaries, reefs, desert landforms, taking photos and labelling them to create a class book
    3. listening to respected community members sharing knowledge about Country/Place, identifying and recording key words and vocabulary
    4. identifying, naming and labelling salient features of the built environment, for example, dwellings, public buildings, school, places to play, ports and roads
    5. recording the weather and seasons of the Country/Place throughout the year in a picture diary or through a series of captioned paintings, including the seasonal behaviour of animals and what plants grow in particular seasons
    6. naming, labelling and sorting into culturally appropriate categories elements from the environment such as bush foods, animals, plants and natural objects, classifying in terms of distinctions such as, edible/non-edible, meat/non meat, salt water/fresh water, day/night animals, rough/smooth, hard/ soft,
    7. learning to read Country/Place with respected community members' guidance by looking for signs such as animal tracks and fruit fall, migratory birds, turtle tracks, animal behaviour, fresh diggings around a lair, appearance of whales
    8. locating specific words and familiar phrases in texts such as charts, lists, photos, maps, and using the information to complete guided oral and written tasks
    9. naming, labelling, drawing and matching outside body parts
    10. learning and using vocabulary and expressions related to healthy living and eating
  2. Give factual information using simple statements, gestures and captions (VCLVC134)
    1. using some location terms to talk about the Country/Place for example, up, down, near, far and using topographical words such as swamp, soakage, reef
    2. presenting information about elements associated with Country/Place, for example, animals, plants, food, artefacts, using modelled sentences, matching captions to pictures and filling-in-gaps activities
    3. contributing to a shared recount about an event such as sports day, an excursion, a class visit from a respected community member, a visiting performance group from the Country/Place, a community celebration, for example, by making a Big Book, creating a display, digital presentation or class photo story
    4. labelling aspects of daily routines, selecting captions or attaching word bubbles and sharing information with others
    5. developing a pictorial story to describe activities and routines at home, at school, in the community
Creating Elaborations
  1. Participate in shared listening to, viewing and reading of texts and respond through singing, miming, play-acting, drawing, action and movement (VCLVC135)
    1. performing songs or stories that include repeated phrases, rhythms and non-verbal forms of expression, such as clapping, gestures, facial expressions and dance
    2. participating in shared reading of stories, responding through mime captioned drawings, dance, play-acting and other forms of expression
    3. visiting important sites on Country/Place and listening to respected community members tell stories, and responding by drawing, labelling, re-enacting with puppets, props or actions
    4. identifying key animals, birds and other characters in stories, songs, performances and dances
    5. listening to respected community members tell stories and identifying which stories belong to which natural features in their region/Country/Place, including animals and natural species and recognising their significance
    6. identifying and naming significant places, landscapes and topographical features on Country/Place through which travelling stories/storylines pass
    7. identifying key messages expressed in stories, song, dance and visual art, for example, rules for living
    8. predicting the content/meaning of narrative texts such as picture books, including titles, covers and illustrations, and giving reasons for their predictions
    9. responding to simple questions about characters and events in imaginative and expressive texts such as stories, songs, dances
  2. Create and present shared stories, songs and performances, using familiar words and patterns and support materials (VCLVC136)
    1. making a shared Big Book based on an event, experience or performance, labelling, captioning and drawing key elements
    2. creating own stories by sequencing a series of pictures with captions or by creating a storyboard with labels, using modelled language and repetitive phrases
    3. re-enacting or retelling simple stories, episodes or interactions, using puppets, props, actions or gestures and modelled language
    4. creating digital texts based around familiar contexts and characters using images and captions
    5. creating their own songs/raps, or new versions of contemporary songs/raps by substituting words and phrases such as animal names, places, geographical features, adding elements such as characters or places, incorporating non-verbal supporting elements such as clapping, gestures and facial expressions
    6. creating dances, paintings and visual designs appropriate to the Country/Place
Translating Elaborations
  1. Translate frequently used words and phrases, using visual cues and resources such as word lists (VCLVC137)
    1. using classroom resources such as word banks/lists, wall charts, visual dictionaries, and pictures to translate the meaning of single words and common expressions
    2. playing matching-pair games using everyday words and expressions from the language and from English
    3. translating and explaining in English the meaning of words, phrases and gestures used in everyday contexts and situations
    4. noticing elements of the language that are the same in English, such as the alphabet and some sounds
    5. explaining symbols and their iconographies
  2. Create simple oral, print or multimodal bilingual texts for the classroom environment, such as captions, signs, labels and wall charts (VCLVC138)
    1. creating bilingual picture word lists, dictionaries, and class reference books of words and their meanings
    2. creating bilingual texts for the school community, such as signs or notices
    3. performing presentations for the school community that involve elements from the language and from English, such as a contribution to an assembly or a performance for Grandparents’ Day
    4. creating bilingual resources for classroom learning activities, such as sets of word cards for matching games
    5. writing captions for a photographic display to show parents/others about a class event or experience, such as sports day or caring for the environment activities
Identity Elaborations
  1. Describe aspects of self, such as family, school/class and language/s spoken, considering how these contribute to their sense of identity (VCLVC139)
    1. describing self and their family, for example, by drawing pictures of immediate family members or creating a family tree and labelling it with appropriate kinship terms
    2. identifying self in relation to different groups, such as family, class or peer group, and representing these relationships through drawing captioned pictures, photos or digital presentations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students may be able to depict their totems/moieties and other affiliations)
    3. exploring the idea of collective identity through symbols and practices such as Aboriginal flags, items of dress, use of colours and patterns
    4. noticing and comparing their own choices and use of words or expressions from different languages when communicating in English
    5. recognising the relationship between language, place and family in the formation of identity in Aboriginal communities
Reflecting Elaborations
  1. Notice how using different languages involves some different ways of communicating and behaving (VCLVC140)
    1. capturing and sharing their impressions when singing songs, dancing, reading stories or playing games in the language, for example, by responding to teacher prompts in language or English, such as, What do you hear? What do you see? What do you notice about…? Why do you think that? How is this similar/different to…?
    2. noticing similarities and differences between the language and English/other known languages in relation to cultural elements, such as the names of foods and animals particular to the climate and environment; and in cultural practices, such as sharing in extended families, special times, story-telling, yarning
    3. considering how they communicate with different friends and family members who have different language backgrounds
    4. describing how it feels to use the language in the classroom and with visiting respected community members


Systems of language Elaborations
  1. Learn the different sounds of the language and link these to written symbols and conventions (VCLVU141)
    1. noticing and distinguishing sounds of the language and matching these with written symbols
    2. recognising when the language is being spoken and distinguishing sounds of the language from English sounds and other known languages
    3. experimenting with sound patterns in song, noticing how words and expressions can be separated into syllables to fit different tunes and rhythms
    4. reading texts aloud to strengthen their familiarity with sound–symbol relationships, experiment with rhyme and alliteration and with written representations of these features
    5. recognising and imitating intonation patterns associated with statements and questions, and understanding how these are distinguished in writing
    6. learning that writing systems represent sounds and meanings, and becoming familiar with how the alphabet associates individual sounds/ a range of sounds with particular letters/ combinations of letters
    7. noticing the shared alphabetic base of the language, English and other languages, with some differences
    8. learning the conventions associated with the written form of the language, such as spaces between words, direction of writing and page layout, and comparing these with written forms of English and other known languages
    9. associating written forms of morphemes, words and phrases with spoken forms of the language
  2. Recognise the function of different word types and understand basic elements of language structures (VCLVU142)
    1. understanding that words in the language have different functions, for example, words for things, words for actions, and that these functions are also found in other languages, such as English
    2. identifying people, places, things and events using:
      • nouns, for example, family, kinship, plants/ animals, items in immediate natural and built environments
      • pronouns, for example, personal, interrogative, kinship, demonstrative
      • verbs for simple actions, states and processes
      • terms to qualify, quantify, classify or compare things, for example, size, colour, number
      • adverbs, for example, of location, time and manner
      • simple forms of negation
    3. becoming aware of how word order may differ from English, for example, noun + qualifier vs qualifier + noun, ’child happy’ vs ’happy child’
    4. recognising the use of common affixes on nouns, for example, the man’s dog’’, to the river’’, in the sea’’
    5. learning the use of common affixes on verbs, for example, to indicate tense or mood
    6. understanding and using metalanguage to describe word types, for example, noun, pronoun, verb
    7. understanding that some parts of the language may have fallen into disuse and not be known today
    8. noticing that new words can be formed from within the language itself, rather than borrowed from other languages
    9. noticing that compared to English some words may be left out (ellipsis), or must be included or repeated in phrases and sentences, for example, “(it) went”, “big (dog) ate (it)”
  3. Recognise there are many ways of communicating messages in Aboriginal languages (VCLVU143)
    1. understanding that there are different ways of telling a story, such as respected community members yarning, through song, dance, music and associated visual design and spectacle, and through painting (body, bark, rock, sand)
    2. understanding that texts have a purpose, for example, greetings, Welcome to Country/Acknowledgement of Country/Place, traditional stories, paintings, songs and dances that convey community-wide messages
    3. identifying some features of stories, for example, the fact that they are often about journeys across Country/Place, involving landforms, animals and plants
    4. noticing how texts such as storybooks are sequenced and organised, for example, by identifying the main title and the connections between pictures and text
    5. recognising that communication can also occur through sign language
  4. Identify elements of the kinship system and its links to place and natural species (VCLVU144)
    1. using kinship charts to identify kinship terms for immediate family, comparing with terms used in own family
    2. recognising that Aboriginal peoples have their own personal relationships with animal species and natural phenomena
    3. recognising that Aboriginal peoples have a personal relationship with language and place
    4. identifying skin names, moieties and other groupings where appropriate
    5. identifying which stories belong to which natural features, including animals, plants, topographical features and recognising their significance
Language variation and change Elaborations
  1. Recognise that different words and language forms are used to address and communicate with people according to relationship and context (VCLVU145)
    1. noticing that different forms of address and kinship terms are used depending on the relationship between participants
    2. recognising that the way someone is related to others affects how he or she speaks to them
    3. recognising that ways of speaking vary according to context and situation, for example, language used when interacting with peers during playground games is different to that used with the teaching team and with visiting respected community members
    4. recognising that language used in particular interactions can vary between cultural contexts, for example, the use of titles in English compared to kin categories in the language
  2. Notice that languages borrow words from each other (VCLVU146)
    1. noticing Aboriginal words and phrases used in everyday Australian life, for example, koala, euro, billabong, dingo
    2. recognising that some words in the language have come from other languages
    3. recognising words in English that have been borrowed from other languages
Language awareness Elaborations
  1. Recognise that the language is part of the broader regional and national language diversity (VCLVU147)
    1. identifying/recognising Indigenous languages in the environment, for example, street names, names of parks
    2. recognising that there are many different Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages in Australia, for example, by viewing Language maps of their region, their state and the whole of Australia
    3. identifying neighbouring Indigenous languages of their region
    4. recognising that linguistic diversity in contemporary Australia includes Indigenous as well as non-Indigenous languages, and that Australia has many languages, for example, by identifying languages used by different classmates by creating a class profile or language map
    5. recognising that some Indigenous languages in Australia are strong, while others are endangered or in the process of being revived or reclaimed
    6. recognising shared vocabulary across groups of Aboriginal languages, for example, words such as ‘hand’, ‘water’, ‘crow’
  2. Understand that language belongs to communities, and that language learning requires the application of respectful and appropriate behaviour (VCLVU148)
    1. understanding that each Aboriginal language is recognised as belonging to a group of people who are the language owners or custodians
    2. demonstrating and applying respectful and appropriate behaviours, including appropriate language forms, in the presence of visiting respected community members and during visits to important sites
    3. understanding the purpose of Welcomes to Country/Acknowledgements of Country, and talking about their experiences of participating in Welcomes and Acknowledgements, for example, at school, sporting events, festivities
Role of language and culture Elaborations
  1. Notice that people use language in ways that reflect their culture, such as where and how they live and what is important to them (VCLVU149)
    1. exploring culture as an essential part of human life, understanding that it is shared and passed on between generations; that it includes observable elements, such as ways of cooking or greeting, symbols such as flags and colours, as well as things that are not observable, such as beliefs and values, people’s ways of thinking about themselves and others and relating to their environment
    2. recognising that in each culture there are general rules of what to say and do, when, where and with whom, and that these rules differ from culture to culture
    3. recognising that beliefs and behaviours are woven into and expressed through languages, and cannot be separated from them
    4. noticing how respect for respected community members and Country/Place is built into the language
    5. recognising significant cultural symbols and features in the language, for example, in song, visual design, dance moves
    6. recognising that languages encapsulate values held about lands, waters and sky, for example, in expressions and concepts such as Caring for Country
Role of language building Elaborations
  1. Recognise that learning Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages can provide language revival benefits to communities (VCLVU150)
    1. understanding that language is communally owned and therefore owners must be consulted regarding any use of it, including learning it in school
    2. identifying and engaging with local identities/personalities/people who are involved in language revival efforts
    3. considering why learning an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander language is important in Australia
  2. Build the resources of the language by creating, performing and recording new texts, and by creating new contexts for its use (VCLVU151)
    1. using the language in performances at school and wider public community events
    2. building language resources, for example, by creating posters and/or language/cultural displays, and by working with the community language team to create new games and songs in the language
    3. noticing that new words can be formed from within the language itself, rather than through borrowing words from other languages

Foundation to Level 2 Achievement Standard

By the end of Level 2, students interact with the teaching team and respected community members to talk about themselves and family, using familiar modelled language and gestures. They use appropriate protocols when interacting with respected community members and community speakers, such as appropriate forms of address, terms of respect and behaviour. They use movement, gestures and modelled questions and responses to participate in guided group activities, for example, collaborating to adapt and perform action songs. They interact in familiar classroom exchanges, using routine classroom language, movement, gesture and action, for example when requesting objects, responding to simple questions, following instructions. They identify key information about Country/Place, under the guidance of respected community members. They use simple statements, gestures and written captions to demonstrate their understanding of Country/Place, for example, by naming bush foods, animals, plants and natural objects, and by classifying and labelling these into culturally appropriate categories. They identify places in the local area which have names in the language. They respond to texts such as...

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Levels 3 to 6

Levels 3 to 6 Description

Students focus on aspects of their personal and social worlds, and are introduced to content related to the Country/Place and language community. They develop an awareness of their membership of various groups, and their widening social networks, experiences, and communicative repertoires, and gain a greater awareness of the world around them.

Students interact with peers, the teaching team,...

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Levels 3 to 6 Content Descriptions


Socialising Elaborations
  1. Interact with peers, the teaching team and visiting respected community members about aspects of personal worlds, such as experiences at school, home, everyday routines, interests and activities (VCLVC152)
    1. describing self in relation to daily routines, family and friends, pastimes and aspects of school and home life
    2. sharing and reflecting on learning experiences, such as visits, meetings, school and community activities with class members, using gestures, illustrations and graphics to support commentary
    3. recounting specific events or experiences, using familiar and modelled language
    4. asking and responding to questions to identify/describe features of people, plants, animals and items in the environment, for example, by referring to colour, size, number, location
    5. talking about aspects of their personal worlds, such as interests and leisure activities
    6. describing other people, such as family members, friends and teachers, for example, by identifying their kin relationship
    7. showing interest in and respect for others, for example, by expressing praise or encouragement
    8. expressing personal experiences and future plans, using modelled sentence patterns
  2. Participate in guided tasks that involve following instructions, making things, cooperating with peers, planning for and conducting shared events, activities or school performances (VCLVC153)
    1. participating in excursions with respected community members to experience story places or keeping places, listening to associated stories
    2. visiting community centres, art centres or language centres and recording the experiences, for example, by developing a digital presentation or photo-story
    3. working with respected community members to develop a short ‘Welcome to Country/Place’ and/or ‘Acknowledgment of Country/Place’ to use at formal school functions or community events
    4. working together on collaborative tasks, such as designing posters, menus or invitations for special events, designing class bush tucker or a garden, creating picture books for buddy classes
    5. interacting with respected community members/community speakers, following instructions, for example when making an artefact, creating an art work or preparing bush tucker, using hand signs as appropriate
    6. participating in and sharing responses to local cultural events and celebrations
    7. participating in national celebrations and significant events, for example, NAIDOC Week, Reconciliation Week, Harmony Day, labelling and captioning photos for a class display and sharing responses through class discussion
    8. creating a skit, performance or action game to introduce a buddy class to aspects of the language and associated culture, for example, individual words, gestures or expressions associated with common exchanges such as introductions, items and artefacts
    9. engaging in shared tasks which involve planning and collaborating, for example, preparing, rehearsing and conducting public presentations and performances, such as an item for a school assembly or a digital presentation about a significant event
    10. giving directions, for example, to guide others to specific locations
  3. Participate in everyday classroom activities and routines, such as responding to questions and requests, asking permission, requesting help (VCLVC154)
    1. using rehearsed phrases and sentences to initiate and respond to language used in familiar classroom routines and exchanges, such as requesting a drink, asking permission to leave the classroom, borrowing equipment using rehearsed phrases and sentences
    2. recognising and rehearsing interjections or fillers used in everyday conversations
    3. asking simple questions and responding with simple statements, for example, asking for help, providing repetition or clarification
    4. enquiring about and describing the location of classroom items and materials
    5. preparing and displaying a set of agreed classroom procedures
    6. participating in class activities that involve vocabulary, actions, signed expression or board/digital games
Informing Elaborations
  1. Gather, record and classify information from a range of sources from Country/Place, historical documents and contemporary resources (VCLVC155)
    1. finding out the origins of Indigenous names, for example, of streets, city parks, rivers, public institutions, social programs in their area
    2. labelling, ordering and classifying natural objects from the environment according to Indigenous taxonomies
    3. obtaining information from a variety of sources about the natural environment, for example, by listening to visiting respected community members, reading, viewing, consulting historical resources and photos, and presenting findings in chart, poster, table, graphic or digital form
    4. reading, viewing or listening to simple texts such as posters, signs, historical documents, word lists, answering questions by selecting from options and filling in gaps
    5. viewing a demonstration, for example, of cooking bush tucker, cooking in an earth oven, and recording key words/phrases related to processes associated with the collection and preparation of food
    6. surveying peers and community members on different topics, for example, favourite television programs, video games, foods, football teams, sports or bands, after school activities/time spent in those activities, languages spoken; and presenting results in chart, graph or digital formats
    7. labelling, drawing and matching inside and outside body parts
    8. observing and reading signs of Country/Place with the guidance of respected community members/community speakers, for example, the presence of bees, dragonflies, changing colours of bark, different tracks, tides, seaweed dumps, regeneration of vegetation, special (warning) calls of birds, turtle mating, ripening of fruit, changes in the night sky; and recording these details through photos, pictures, diagrams, captions, simple descriptions and commentaries
    9. classifying different types of plants/parts of plants and their uses, for example, what different parts are used for or which are poisonous, presenting findings in chart, poster, table, graphic or digital form
    10. mapping Country/Place in various forms, for example, on paper, in sand or mud, labelling key topographical features and infrastructure and making simple statements about their locations in relation to other places, for example, east, west, near, far, other side of…
    11. investigating and discussing where appropriate the meaning of personal and family names of Aboriginal origin
    12. surveying and comparing healthy ways of eating, for example, by identifying what is available from the school canteen and listing which healthy foods they like to eat, recording and presenting results in chart, graph or digital format or by giving an oral presentation
  2. Convey information on specific topics using formats such as oral or digital presentations, displays, diagrams (VCLVC156)
    1. talking about Country/Place, using a range of location and direction terms
    2. presenting information about events and activities in Country/Place through spoken, print and digital forms
    3. creating a profile of a prominent community figure, for example, a sports personality, community leader/negotiator/spokesperson, a musician or artist
    4. organising and presenting information relating to language and culture, for example different expressions of storying, art or dance, using simple sentence structures, familiar vocabulary and concrete materials
    5. creating a video clip that incorporates captions and commentary to demonstrate procedures for activities such as preparing and cooking bush tucker, making tools, decorating artefacts, playing a favourite computer game, sport or playground game
    6. creating texts such as flyers, posters or posts on the school website to advertise an upcoming event
Creating Elaborations
  1. Listen to, read and view different real and imaginative texts, identifying and making simple statements about key elements, characters and events, and interpreting cultural expressions and behaviours (VCLVC157)
    1. recalling, illustrating and describing main characters and events in stories, songs and performances, for example, by selecting descriptive modelled statements as captions to their pictures or responding to questions, such as, Who? Where? How long? What?
    2. participating in shared and guided reading/listening/viewing of real and imaginative texts, for example by making predictions about the development or flow of ideas, using contextual and visual cues, responding to questions and comparing responses to different characters, ideas and events
    3. conveying understanding of plot and sequence in texts, for example, by re-creating a sequence using a storyboard, labelling key events or creating a timeline
    4. mapping sites, landforms and other features of Country/Place through which a travelling story/storyline passes
    5. listening to respected community members tell stories on Country/Place, interpreting hand signs and gestures, retelling parts of the story, for example, in sand, through painting or by performing, using a combination of words/phrases, illustrations, movements and visual props
    6. listening to respected community members telling stories from their local area, and responding by retelling parts of the story
    7. interacting/engaging with artistic expression/techniques appropriate to Country/Place, such as paintings, drawings, etchings, sculptures and dance, interpreting messages conveyed through these different forms
    8. discussing key messages expressed in stories, songs and dance, such as social values and rules for living, comparing them to messages conveyed by stories in other cultures and languages
    9. responding to a specific creative text by adapting the original to create a new version, for example, by re-sequencing events, adding new elements, changing time, location or character, or creating an alternative ending
    10. understanding and discussing the importance of story/ storytelling in transmitting and maintaining language and culture
  2. Create and present real and imaginative texts suitable for a particular audience, using familiar expressions and modelled language (VCLVC158)
    1. creating and performing their own stories, songs and skits, incorporating non-verbal elements to enhance audience comprehension and entertainment, for example, gesture, facial and vocal expression
    2. experimenting with different ways of telling stories, using a range of different texts, for example, oral texts, photo stories, e-books, dance, visual design, drawings on soft and hard surfaces
    3. creating, performing and presenting imaginative texts such as skits, songs and raps, using digital techniques
    4. creating real or imaginary characters, places or animals and presenting them through performance, digital display or visual representation
    5. incorporating onomatopoeic sounds into written/performed texts to enrich the texts and to entertain readers/the audience
    6. creating imaginative texts to entertain younger audiences, for example, audio Big Books, puppet plays, performances for the school or community, cartoons, video clips, vokis or animation, selecting language and images that enrich the visual or listening experience
    7. creating shared art work (visual or performative) to tell a story, using symbols and expressive techniques appropriate to Country/Place
Translating Elaborations
  1. Translate simple texts from the language to English and vice versa, identifying elements which require interpretation rather than translation and involve cultural references (VCLVC159)
    1. using visual or print dictionaries, word lists and pictures to translate simple familiar texts such as labels, signs, captions, charts, posters, applying knowledge of grammatical rules and context, for example, by locating word stems or by removing affixes
    2. translating texts, identifying culture-specific concepts and expressions that do not easily translate into English, for example, language related to artefacts, place names, landforms, kinship relations
    3. explaining to others culture-specific words that do not easily translate, such as language associated with artefacts, implements and kinship terms of address
    4. identifying words and phrases that have more than one literal meaning
    5. explaining the meaning of art works and performances to others, including the use of symbolism
  2. Create bilingual texts for the classroom and the school community, such as songs, picture dictionaries, captions for images and displays, photo stories (VCLVC160)
    1. creating bilingual wall charts or picture dictionaries with captions and simple descriptions in English to explain language words and related cultural ideas
    2. performing bilingual versions of familiar songs, for example by alternating lines/verses between the two languages
    3. creating bilingual texts such as posters and songs, and discussing how to represent meaning in different languages for different audiences
    4. creating bilingual texts such as brochures, posters or invitations to inform others about upcoming events
Identity Elaborations
  1. Explore their own sense of identity, including elements such as family, friends, interests, membership of groups, and consider markers of identity that may be important across all cultures (VCLVC161)
    1. creating a class wall chart or family tree, labelling with appropriate kinship terms (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students may be able to source information about their totems/moieties and other affiliations from home, family and community sources)
    2. investigating and discussing, as culturally appropriate, the meaning of personal, family and other names and their significance as markers of identity
    3. working with respected community members to map community-wide links between families according to known kin links
    4. designing visual representations, such as concept maps, posters or captioned slide presentations, of their group memberships, for example, friendship, family, sporting, interest and community groups, moieties, and discussing what such membership means to their sense of identity
    5. creating a profile to capture their sense of personal identity, for example, through an avatar or montage, using key words and expressions and commenting on the significance of particular events, influences or interactions
    6. considering how their individual upbringing and experiences impact on their assumptions/attitudes when participating in intercultural interactions, for example, in relation to notions of leisure/free time or family and community responsibilities
    7. talking about ways local Aboriginal communities express elements of their shared identity, for example, through behaviours associated with sporting teams, distinctions between coastal versus inland communities, through community events and profiling of identities from their community
    8. noticing and comparing their use of words or expressions from different languages when communicating in English and discussing how this relates to their sense of identity
    9. monitoring their development as learners of the language, for example, by recording learning experiences, reflections in blogs, learning logs or journals
    10. identifying markers of identity that may be important across all cultures, for example, family, community, location, language, age, gender
    11. exploring the concept of collective identity by designing an item, such as a language flag or artefact, that incorporates elements of importance to the language/community
Reflecting Elaborations
  1. Notice and describe ways in which the language and associated communicative behaviours are similar or different to other known languages and cultures (VCLVC162)
    1. noticing how respect is shown to respected community members in the community, through practices such as terms of address and expressions of deference, and comparing to practices associated with other languages and cultures
    2. noticing aspects of communication and cultural expression characterised or reflected in language stories, songs, visual design, dance or audio/visual media such as IndigiTUBE, and reflecting on/comparing their individual responses to these elements
    3. comparing their own and each other’s reflections on the experience of participating in and learning the language, and considering whether their attitudes or understandings have in some respects changed through the experience
    4. comparing observations about how interactions in the language feel different to interactions in English and other known languages, identifying different ways of socialising or communicating that seem to be culture-specific


Systems of language Elaborations
  1. Distinguish and produce the speech sounds of the language, understanding how these are represented in writing (VCLVU163)
    1. identifying meaningful sounds, syllables and morphemes in words and phrases
    2. confirming sound–symbol correspondences in the language by reading syllables, morphemes and words for meaning
    3. using conventions of the written language, for example, punctuation, capitalisation, diacritics, digraphs, to support links with the spoken language
    4. identifying morphemes, words and phrases in speech and matching these with their written forms
    5. paying attention to consistency in the spelling of the language, with direct reference to the sound system of the language
    6. noticing variations in pronunciation of the same word by different speakers and discussing whether this can be reflected in the spelling of the word
    7. recognising that in some cases the original sound/parts of the sound of some words in the language may be unknown, considering possible reasons for this
    8. understanding that other languages may suggest historical pronunciations for the language
    9. learning that very similar languages may have different spelling systems, and how this may mask similarities of their sound systems
    10. recognising which speech sounds are not typical for the language, and which sounds are very common, identifying where these can occur in words
    11. using knowledge of sound–symbol correspondences to read familiar and new words out aloud from their written forms
    12. noticing the various roles of the speech organs in the production of sounds in the language, and comparing these with English and other known languages
  2. Expand vocabulary in the language through word-formation processes and recognise and use simple language structures (VCLVU164)
    1. exploring known word formation processes, for example, changing a word with the addition or change of a suffix or prefix to convey different meanings
    2. constructing expressions that refer to people, places, things and events using:
      • nouns and adjectives in phrases, for example, compound nouns, reduplications and nominalisations, adjectives without an associated noun
      • sentences without verbs, for example, ‘This (is) my bag’
      • pronouns, for example, personal, kinship, demonstrative and interrogative in all persons and numbers
      • determiners and quantifiers, for example, ‘some’, ‘every’, ‘other’, ‘few’, ‘much’, ‘all’, and words for groups
      • marking to indicate possession and other types of association, for example, ‘Let’s go for water’
      • transitive and intransitive verbs
      • verbs of stance used in existential expressions, for example, ‘There is a creek lying near the road’
      • verbs to talk about actions, processes, thoughts and feelings
      • moods of verbs, including statements, questions, imperatives, commands, intention, purpose, likelihood, reported speech
      • negation
    3. expressing time, manner, attitude and place according to available language resources, such as:
      • tenses, including past, present and future/non-past
      • temporal expressions, for example, day–night cycle, lunar and seasonal cycles, ‘before’, ‘after’, ‘soon’, ‘recent’, ‘long ago’, expressions for cosmological time
      • expressions of frequency, for example, ‘often’, ‘always’, ‘once’, ‘briefly’
      • attitudinal particles, for example, ‘maybe’, ‘it is said’, ‘what do you say?’, ‘would you mind?’, ‘you see’
      • locational cases, for example, ‘in’, ‘an’, ‘at’, ‘near’, ‘besides’, ‘to’, ‘towards’, ‘from’
      • adverbs of manner, location and time, for example, ‘again’, ‘more’, ‘in turn’, ‘too late’, ‘as well’
      • structuring and linking clauses, for example, using coordination, subordination, embedding
    4. understanding that rules vary between languages, for example, in relation to word-formation, word order at phrase and sentence level
    5. making comparisons and identifying patterns in and between languages, for example, free and fixed word order, tenses in verbs, use of affixes versus prepositions
    6. noticing similarities between particular vocabulary sets in languages from the same region, such as words for body parts, kinship terms
    7. developing metalanguage for talking about language, for example, noun phrases, suffixes, prefixes, tense, transitivity, using resources from both the language and English
  3. Understand that texts such as stories, paintings, songs and dances have distinct purposes and particular language features (VCLVU165)
    1. distinguishing the purpose and characteristic features of different types of texts, for example, stories are usually about journeys across Country and convey explanations about why features of Country exist and are important
    2. understanding that for many Aboriginal languages conventions of written text are in the process of being developed
    3. recognising language features typically associated with familiar texts, for example, the use of imperatives in games, instructions and procedures, and the use of past and habitual tenses in stories
    4. linking ideas using appropriate grammatical forms and processes, for example, connectives, serialisation, embedding
    5. recognising the role played by different elements in texts to contribute to meaning-making, for example, the layout, title, illustration and use of punctuation in a picture book or the use of speech bubbles in a cartoon
    6. investigating the purpose and use of sign language in various Aboriginal languages, for example, for hunting, for recent bereavement, for communicating at a distance, for restricting who can understand the message
  4. Recognise how kin relationships link people, Place and story (VCLVU166)
    1. interpreting kinship charts to identify kin terms for wider family groupings, and comparing these with terminology used in other languages and cultures, for example, for maternal versus paternal grandparents, the presence or absence of birth order names
    2. discussing links between people, stories and Country/Place and the social importance of connections to history
    3. recognising that certain places have historical and contemporary significance to the community, representing special bonds between people, Place and story
    4. understanding that songs, stories and other forms of artistic expression can be recreated/traced and contextualised in contemporary circumstances
Language variation and change Elaborations
  1. Understand that speakers vary language forms according to kin relationship and context of situation (VCLVU167)
    1. observing how language is used to establish, maintain and reflect kin-based relationships
    2. noticing word taboo in Aboriginal languages
    3. observing that expressions can be made more or less formal or casual to suit the relationship between speakers
    4. reflecting on how they communicate with their own family and friends and with people less close to them, noticing differences in language use and communicative behaviour
  2. Recognise that languages change over time (VCLVU168)
    1. identifying words that are the same as or similar to neighbouring languages
    2. understanding ways in which languages influence one another, for example, language shifts, shared writing systems, loan words
    3. discussing loan words that have been incorporated from other languages to describe new concepts, for example, words for new things, including technological innovations
    4. understanding that language and culture together continually change as a result of contact with other languages and cultures
Language awareness Elaborations
  1. Explore the language situation of language communities and the diversity of language contexts in Australia (VCLVU169)
    1. investigating the nature and state of health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages across Australia and in their region
    2. recognising that many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are multilingual, and discussing reasons for this
    3. learning about the current language situation in the language: its state of health, the nature of the speech community and generational differences, and discussing reasons for these characteristics
    4. recognising that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages are in various states of maintenance, development and revival, and investigating the diversity of historical causes for this
    5. recognising how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages have been transmitted and recorded across generations
    6. exploring how physical and biological environments affect linguistic ecology
    7. recognising shared vocabulary across Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages, and understanding why there might be variations in spelling
    8. recognising dialectal differences and similarities within languages
    9. investigating ways in which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages are used in the local region and in the wider Australian community, for example, in the media, in art galleries, festivals, on public transport
  2. Understand that the use of stories and names in Aboriginal languages are culturally determined (VCLVU170)
    1. observing and discussing protocols surrounding the retelling and sharing of stories
    2. recognising and using principles and protocols of cultural safety when engaging with cultural material/property, such as names of things, peoples and places, visual and aural recordings, art work
    3. understanding how and when Welcomes and Acknowledgements are required and who is entitled to deliver them
Role of language and culture Elaborations
  1. Explore connections between identity and cultural values and beliefs and the expression of these connections in Aboriginal languages (VCLVU171)
    1. understanding the role of Aboriginal languages and cultures in caring for Country/Place and the environment
    2. investigating how Aboriginal peoples express their relationship with the natural environment through language, for example, words/expressions associated with seasons, stars, winds, reefs, rivers, waterholes, plants and animals
    3. gaining understanding through discussions with respected community members of the importance and significance of Welcome to Country/Place
    4. understanding that Aboriginal languages are keeping places for cultural, environmental and social knowledge
    5. recognising that song and song language play a central role as keeping places of knowledge
    6. understanding that Aboriginal languages have a rich oral literature, which recounts epic journeys and events associated with totemic ancestors/cultural heroes, and that these stories map the land and embody values and mores of Aboriginal cultures
    7. understanding and discussing the importance of story and the role of story-telling in transmitting language and culture
    8. recognising ways in which cultural values are expressed in language, for example, through forms of address, speech prohibitions and styles, language of respect, land–language associations and non-verbal communicative behaviours
    9. observing that concepts may be culture-specific, for example, expressing spatial awareness, how relationships are structured, how time and quantity are expressed, how land, water, sea and sky are viewed
    10. recognising that Aboriginal languages have various social, spiritual and cultural functions within communities
Role of language building Elaborations
  1. Identify available resources and protocols to be followed when building language (VCLVU172)
    1. identifying and locating available language resources suitable for language building, for example, living speakers and rememberers, visual, aural and written documents, archival material
    2. identifying the existence and location of keeping places for texts and resources as language is rebuilt, for example, in the community, national archives, purpose-built interpretative centres
    3. understanding that there are protocols to be followed when building language, such as consulting and involving language owners who may want to determine how the language expands into new domains of use
    4. discussing potential limits and constraints of school language programs in relation to building language
    5. learning about language building efforts in their community and the role of particular groups in this process, for example, by visiting the local language centre, history museum or by inviting people involved in the process to talk to the class
    6. identifying language revival programs in other regions and reporting on processes used and resources developed
    7. finding examples of language revival in the categories of language revitalisation, language renewal and language reclamation, and consider what these examples contribute to the processes of language building
    8. understanding how language revival serves to enrich Australia’s linguistic and cultural resources
  2. Understand how the language has been recorded in the past, and how this affects language building processes (VCLVU173)
    1. understanding how the language was recorded in the past, by whom and for what purposes
    2. understanding the techniques of how the language was recorded in the past, what this means to the language and how it has affected current representation of the language
    3. understanding reasons for different spellings of words within the language, for example, how sounds may have been misheard, meanings been misunderstood and other unintentional errors introduced in the documentation process of the language
    4. understanding how language resources such as living speakers, recorded texts and archival information are used in the language building process
    5. identifying gaps in the vocabulary of the language, considering what responses may be necessary
    6. helping to build a community of learners–speakers who use the language, for example, by teaching younger members of the school community and/or classes in local primary schools

Levels 3 to 6 Achievement Standard

By the end of Level 6, students use familiar language and modelled sentence patterns to share information about aspects of their personal worlds, such as their family and friends, interests, everyday routines and activities. They interact appropriately with respected community members and community speakers, and apply principles and protocols of cultural safety when interacting with Country/Place and engaging with cultural material such as artefacts, works of art, texts and performances. Students ask and respond to simple questions, request help, repetition or clarification, and respond to questions and requests using rehearsed phrases and sentences. Whenever possible they use the language to interact and collaborate in games and other activities, including the use of hand signs as appropriate. They interact with Country/Place to gather information and knowledge and demonstrate their understanding of Country/Place, for example, by explaining the origins and meanings of Aboriginal names of streets, parks, public institutions and social programs. They label, order and classify natural objects, animals and plants, by making simple statements about key features. They identify features...

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Levels 7 to 10

Levels 7 to 10 Description

Students continue to engage with Country/Place to explore the environment and learn about Country/Place with respected community members.

Students bring to their learning a range of language learning strategies. They are increasingly aware of the world beyond their own, and are engaging with the broader issues of youth and society, land and environment, education and identity, while establishing...

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Levels 7 to 10 Content Descriptions


Socialising Elaborations
  1. Engage with peers, the teaching team and visiting respected community members to exchange information about interests, experiences, plans and aspirations (VCLVC174)
    1. expressing personal experiences, plans, goals and aspirations
    2. asking and responding to open-ended questions, for example, why, how, when, using modelled sentence patterns
    3. engaging in face-to-face or online discussions with peers about shared interests and experiences, such as sport, food, study, music or fashion
    4. recounting experiences, such as holidays, special events, milestones, sports events or celebrations
    5. sharing and comparing information about daily routines and responsibilities
    6. sustaining and extending conversations by seeking additional information
    7. exchanging information about family, friends, teachers, school subjects, entertainment and leisure activities
  2. Engage in activities that involve collaboration, planning, organising, promoting and taking action (VCLVC175)
    1. participating in planning and making arrangements, using language related to place and activity, for example, organising class events, such as holding a lunch, party or performance
    2. creating displays, presentations or performances for family, friends or the school community to showcase progress in learning and using the language
    3. giving and following instructions, using hand signs as appropriate, for example, explaining how to cook bush tucker or to make artefacts
    4. planning and participating in learning experiences that combine linguistic and cultural elements, such as an excursion to an art exhibition or performance, sharing responses and reactions
    5. designing posters, displays and digital presentations to draw attention to issues relevant to the Country/Place, such as reinstating names of places and features, protection of significant trees and landmarks, endangered wildlife, erosion, urban development, the importance of learning the language of Country/Place at school
    6. promoting events in the local community, such as festivals, sporting, music and cultural events that support/promote well-being and community development
    7. promoting Reconciliation in community by showcasing local language learning and language revival activities
  3. Interact in class activities that involve making suggestions, seeking clarification, praising or complimenting one another (VCLVC176)
    1. making suggestions or providing clarification
    2. using respectful language for agreeing or disagreeing
    3. asking for clarification, for example, asking how to spell a word, say or write something, or asking for the meaning of a word or expression
    4. giving help, responding to instructions, offering suggestions
    5. asking and responding to closed and open-ended questions, for example, in relation to class assignments or due dates
    6. apologising, praising, complimenting and encouraging one another
Informing Elaborations
  1. Investigate and summarise factual information obtained from a range of sources on a variety of topics and issues related to the Country/Place (VCLVC177)
    1. investigating the origins of Aboriginal names in their local area, regional area and state and territory, recording meanings where known, and identifying different source languages
    2. interviewing an respected community member to gain an historical perspective about their use of particular words and language constructions, observing correct respect protocols and presenting findings in formats such as digital presentations, posters, wall charts or oral summaries
    3. researching and creating a profile of a prominent member of the language community, for example, an artist, sportsperson or leader
    4. developing a photographic record/portfolio of different animal and plant species found in Country/Place, with commentary/annotations
    5. seeking information from respected community members to assist in classifying living things according to culturally appropriate categories, comparing these classification systems with those used in western approaches to the study of living systems
    6. identifying and describing the role of various Aboriginal organisations that provide services to their community
    7. researching different aspects of a selected Indigenous business operating in the community, for example, an enterprise associated with arts, bush medicine, bush food, tourism, transportation or animal husbandry, and presenting findings in digital formats or oral presentation mode
    8. analysing a range of historical documents recorded in the language, classifying content according to categories such as date, text genre (wordlist, letter), topic (Indigenous knowledge, environment, traditions, fishing/navigation, rules), purpose of the text and intention of the writer (to inform, prescribe, describe, assert authority); and presenting findings in chart or table form or by giving a presentation
    9. interviewing local community members about their experiences of living on the land, their relationship with language and culture and their recollections from the past, recording and presenting key findings
    10. researching Aboriginal words used in English, using resources such as the Australian National Dictionary, and identifying and explaining words that come from the local language
  2. Convey information about Country/Place events, experiences or topics of shared interest, using different modes of presentation (VCLVC178)
    1. creating a booklet/pamphlet/guide/brochure for the local community that explains the origins of local place names and features their meaning and significance, providing explanations in language and English as appropriate
    2. creating a video clip or a photographic or journal record of activities such as an excursion, performance or sporting event to share with other language learners
    3. creating and editing a presentation that includes text, images and sounds to record and explain aspects of the Country/Place
    4. creating a short documentary to present information and features/stories, for example, about the Country/Place and associated social and cultural events, including, for example, interviews with and quotes from prominent identities
    5. compiling a portfolio of texts about Country/Place, for example, a class anthology of stories and songs from the community, procedural texts, histories of the region, profiles of community identities
    6. creating an interactive presentation for younger children that highlights the benefits of maintaining and strengthening the language of the Country/Place
Creating Elaborations
  1. Interpret and respond to texts by sharing personal reactions, comparing themes, describing and explaining aspects of artistic expression and how these relate to land, sky, sea, water, people, plants, animals and social and ecological relationships (VCLVC179)
    1. listening to respected community speakers tell stories on Country/Place, interpreting signs and gestures and using correct protocols to ask clarifying questions and to find out about the cultural role of storytelling
    2. interpreting and responding to texts such as songs, stories, films or video clips by recording key vocabulary and expressions, identifying and explaining main ideas, themes and sequences of events, for example, by sharing personal reactions with others
    3. discussing how key messages and beliefs are communicated through stories and visual and creative arts, for example, comparing the role and representation of animals, people and landscapes in different expressive forms
    4. discussing and explaining how land, sky, sea, people, plants, animals and social and ecological relationships are expressed through the arts
    5. investigating traditional and contemporary arts, including paintings, weavings, artefacts, and identifying how they relate to or express elements of Country/Place and people
    6. listening to, viewing and comparing personal responses to popular music, identifying key messages, themes and performance styles,, and considering how they incorporate social commentary
    7. discussing how stories and songs often link neighbouring Aboriginal groups and nations
    8. retelling stories belonging to Country/Place
  2. Create a range of spoken, written and multimodal texts to entertain others, involving real or imagined contexts and characters (VCLVC180)
    1. creating a rap or skit to entertain others, including digital or performative elements,
    2. creating own visual and performative art work, using symbols and techniques appropriate to Country/Place to convey a message or emotion
    3. taking on the role of a character from a story and responding to questions in-role
    4. creating and performing real or imagined experiences, using expressive language, gestures and supporting materials to create dramatic effect
    5. creating animations, short plays or stories to present in class or to share with a wider virtual audience
    6. composing simple songs, sporting chants, jingles, posters or advertisements for real or imagined situations or products
    7. telling the story of a real or imagined journey, involving a variety of characters, places and events
    8. collaborating with community to tell stories
Translating Elaborations
  1. Translate and interpret texts from the language to English and vice versa, comparing their versions and considering how to explain elements that involve cultural knowledge or understanding (VCLVC181)
    1. translating and interpreting texts from the language to English and vice versa, comparing own interpretations with those of others and discussing what differs and why
    2. translating and interpreting texts such as narratives, song lyrics, dialogues or posters, considering how to explain elements that involve cultural knowledge or understanding, and using resources such as dictionaries and grammars
    3. using and explaining words and expressions that do not easily translate into English and considering choices made when conveying equivalent meaning in English
    4. identifying and explaining concepts, practices and expressions in the language which do not easily translate into English, for example, the number system, terms for colour, language associated with time, daily and seasonal cycles, kinship terms
    5. understanding and applying culturally appropriate and ethical behaviour when interpreting and translating
  2. Create bilingual texts for the wider community collaboration with others (VCLVC182)
    1. creating shared bilingual learning resources, such as print or digital word banks or glossaries of expressions used in everyday interactions in the language and in English
    2. creating bilingual learning resources for younger learners, for example, children’s stories and games
    3. performing a role-play or skit for a specified audience, using the language for the performance and English for supporting explanations and commentary
    4. creating bilingual texts, using subtitles and captions, to inform the school community about aspects of the language and culture
    5. creating a bilingual display, for example, a video-clip or photographic display to showcase events and shared experiences, such as a bush trip
    6. creating bilingual digital texts such as song lyrics or dialogues which allow display in the language, in English or in both
Identity Elaborations
  1. Consider and discuss their own and each other’s ways of communicating and expressing identity, reflecting on how the language links the local, regional and national identity of its speakers with the land (VCLVC183)
    1. considering how their own biography, including elements such as family origins, traditions, beliefs, practices, interests and experiences, shapes their sense of identity and ways of communicating
    2. describing kinship connections with the surrounding Country/Place or connections of a respected community member or guest speaker
    3. creating spoken, written or multimodal texts, such as identity maps, timelines, digital presentations or family trees with captions, to mark key milestones and significant influences in their lives, for example, key people, events, educational experiences, community affiliations, traditions or travel experiences, considering how these shape identity
    4. comparing and reflecting on how identity is expressed across languages and cultures, for example, by considering the idea of ‘belonging’ as expressed in different languages
    5. discussing the role that language and culture play in the identity and well-being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
    6. investigating how particular policies and practices affect the sense of identity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, for example, the effect of language loss, separation from Country/Place/family/community
    7. reflecting on how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples from different nations express their group identity, for example, through practices and symbols such as flags, Welcomes to Country, Indigenous rounds in sporting leagues
    8. reflecting on how their own biography, including family origins, traditions, beliefs, practices, interests and experiences, shapes their sense of identity and ways of communicating
    9. discussing the link between identity and connections to land/water/sea/sky, culture and language and the health and well-being of individuals and community
    10. reflecting on how the language links the local, regional and national identity of its speakers with the land, water, sea and sky
Reflecting Elaborations
  1. Participate in intercultural interactions and consider own reactions when engaging with respected community members and resources (VCLVC184)
    1. reflecting and reporting on how learning the language provides insights into the relationship between language and culture in general, and how their own assumptions about ways of knowing and being may change through the experience
    2. reflecting on how learning the language provides a distinctive means of understanding the Country/Place, including the relationship between land, the environment and people, and issues of discrimination and reconciliation
    3. keeping a journal of memorable experiences (humorous, satisfying or challenging) associated with learning and using the language in various contexts, noting personal responses and reflections over time and insights gained
    4. identifying and comparing how emotions or attitudes such as respect, shyness, exuberance or embarrassment are shown, displayed and expressed across different languages and cultures


Systems of language Elaborations
  1. Understand and explain the sound patterns in spoken language and use developing phonemic awareness to represent these patterns in written form (VCLVU185)
    1. reading aloud for meaning to demonstrate comprehension of sound–symbol correspondences
    2. developing metalanguage to describe and talk about sounds and phonology, for example, place and manner of articulation, uncertain or missing sounds
    3. investigating sound patterns, for example, consonant and vowel sequences, and word-level patterns, for example, allowable word-final sounds, allowable consonant clusters, word stress
    4. understanding the major categories of place of articulation in Aboriginal languages, for example, peripheral, laminal, apical, and their realisation across different languages and regions in Australia
    5. establishing similarities in the sound systems of related languages otherwise masked by differing spelling systems
    6. using their knowledge of alphabetic conventions for Aboriginal languages to transcribe spoken texts from a range of languages, for example, those related to the target language or those from neighbouring regions
    7. comparing and explaining the relative consistency of Aboriginal languages and English in spelling words
    8. understanding the phonemic basis of alphabetic spelling systems and the fact that different sounds can be covered within a single phoneme or letter
    9. exploring different writing systems that are based on different principles, for example, syllabic or ideographic
  2. Expand vocabulary and understand and use a range of vocabulary sets and grammatical structures that are available in the language (VCLVU186)
    1. understanding case and case marking on nouns, pronouns and adjectives
    2. explaining how verbs can be derived from nouns and vice versa, comparing with similar processes in English and other known languages
    3. composing and varying messages according to the available resources of the language, such as:
      • suffixes, including ‘having’, ‘for want of’, ‘similar to’, ‘like’
      • verbless sentences, for example, equative, descriptive, possessive
      • verb categories, including intransitive, transitive, causative, inchoative, reflexive–reciprocal
      • verb aspect, including continuous, transitory, perfective, imperfective
      • verb-stem morphology, including compound verbs, reduplicated verbs, habitual/characteristic, derivation (nouns into verbs)
    4. expressing time, manner, attitude and place, according to the available language resources, such as:
      • elaborations of past tense
      • temporal expressions, for example, ‘beforehand’, ‘afterwards’, ‘too late’, ‘originally’
      • expressions of frequency, immediacy and duration, for example, ‘persistently’, ‘at once’, ‘a few times’, ‘for a while’
      • attitudinal words, particles and interjections, for example, terms expressing endearment, embarrassment, shame or pity
      • locational cases as used in locative phrases, and extensions of these, for example, expressing origin or causation
    5. structuring and linking clauses, focusing on issues of agreement with transitive and intransitive verbs, using verb-linking devices, for example, serialisation and embedding
    6. discussing lexical and grammatical relationships between the language and other languages of the region, for example, common words and structures
    7. discussing grammatical and lexical contrasts between the language and English/ other known languages, for example, the figurative use of language, vocabulary associated with specialised domains
  3. Discuss the purpose and roles of various spoken, written and visual texts in the language (VCLVU187)
    1. understanding the purpose and role of different types of text in the language, for example, declaring identity, acknowledging parts of traditional belief systems, acknowledging ancestors, passing on knowledge and information, mapping resources on Country and managing natural phenomena such as weather
    2. understanding that Country/Place can be interpreted as text by the community
    3. discussing ways that songs function to capture language and meaning in ways similar to literature in other cultures
    4. linking and sequencing ideas to form cohesive texts, using appropriate grammatical forms and elements, for example, serialisation, connectives, embedding, headings and paragraphing
  4. Investigate how the kinship system functions to integrate personal and community histories and relationships (VCLVU188)
    1. understanding and discussing kinship as a system, and explaining its importance in maintaining and regulating social relationships in Aboriginal communities
    2. investigating how the language community addresses gaps in knowledge about the kinship system
    3. exploring how language is involved in the patterning of ownership and management of land and associated stories
    4. understanding that different roles and responsibilities in community and public life can be determined by kinship and traditional social groupings
    5. explaining how art forms, songs and dances identify people and places
Language variation and change Elaborations
  1. Discuss variations in language use that reflect different social and cultural contexts, purposes and relationships (VCLVU189)
    1. understanding how elements of communication in Aboriginal languages languages, such as gestures, facial expressions, choice of language and use of silence, vary according to context, situation and kin relationships, for example, eye contact, pointing with lips
    2. analysing and discussing intergenerational differences in language use, for example, young people’s language compared to the language of older generations
    3. explaining variations in language use that reflect different levels of formality, authority and status, for example, expressions used with respected kin, ways of asking questions of different people
  2. Describe and reflect on how languages change over time and influence one another (VCLVU190)
    1. exploring form, usage, history and impact of contact languages, including creoles, pidgins and Aboriginal Englishes
    2. investigating and describing how the language has changed over time
    3. observing changes to language that reflect changing lifestyles, cultural trends and emerging needs, for example, youth language, the language of new technologies, the impact of music, media and technology on communication
    4. reflecting on changes in their own use of their first language(s) over time, noticing how and when new ways are adopted or existing ways adapted
    5. exploring changes in language over time, for example, by reviewing old films from state archives or early television shows that include Aboriginal actors
Language awareness Elaborations
  1. Investigate and compare the ecology of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages to Indigenous languages in other countries, and consider issues such as language policy, language rights, language loss, advocacy, reform and multilingualism (VCLVU191)
    1. investigating the social, cultural and linguistic effects of language change and/or language loss in the region
    2. understanding terms used in the discussion of language revival, for example, revitalisation, reclamation, renewal
    3. investigating the geographical extent of use of the language in earlier times
    4. considering the future prospects of the language in the context of its current linguistic ecology
    5. exploring Indigenous multilingualism in various communities, including regional varieties, Aboriginal Englishes and creoles
    6. researching the impact on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages in general, and on the target language in particular, of historical events, government policies, legislation and judicial processes, such as stolen generations, mission schools and advocacy
    7. identifying social and government policies and practices that have impacted positively on language acquisition, for example, the performing of Welcome to Country and the Acknowledgement of Country at events, on television programs, in films, and efforts to raise the profile of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages in the wider Australian community and in particular geographical regions
    8. investigating the situation of indigenous languages in other countries, for example, New Zealand, Hawaii, North America, Japan, Latin America, considering issues such as language rights, language endangerment, revival and reclamation, drawing comparisons with the situation of Aboriginal languages and Torres Strait Islander languages in Australia
    9. researching current media debates in relation to Aboriginal languages
    10. comparing word lists of languages and dialects of the region, to understand similarities and differences and identify potential opportunities for reconstruction
  2. Understand and apply cultural norms, skills and protocols associated with learning, using and researching Aboriginal languages (VCLVU192)
    1. using culturally appropriate protocols when engaging with and learning from Aboriginal peoples and communities
    2. acknowledging cultural and intellectual property rights and copyright over language work, including song holders, story keepers, language informers, composers and choreographers
Role of language and culture Elaborations
  1. Reflect on how ways of using language are shaped by communities’ ways of thinking, behaving and viewing the world, and the role of language in passing on knowledge (VCLVU193)
    1. explaining the role of Aboriginal languages and cultures in passing on knowledge such as sustainable care of the environment, rules for living, ways of behaving, spiritual and cultural functions and History
    2. reflecting on Indigenous taxonomies and the ways they divide the natural and cultural world and comparing these to other systems of classification
    3. analysing concepts related to cultural values in Aboriginal languages, including naming systems, for example, the use of kinship terms, nicknames, substitute words and pronoun systems, comparing to ways of referencing relationships in their own language(s) and culture(s)
    4. exploring how aspects of traditional culture and society have been preserved through language, and discussing the importance of maintaining Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages, for their speakers and for all Australians
    5. analysing and discussing core cultural concepts reflected in Aboriginal languages, such as respect, avoidance, reciprocity, obligation, responsibility
    6. understanding that culturally significant attitudes and beliefs conveyed through Aboriginal languages are related to the past, to land, plants and animals and to celebrations
    7. identifying and comparing how emotions or attitudes, such as respect, affection or embarrassment, are shown/displayed across different languages and cultures
    8. comparing elements of communication such as the role of silence or use/avoidance of eye contact in different cultural contexts and exchanges
    9. recognising that there are multiple views on and partial explanations for events and issues
    10. reflecting on the ways culture is interpreted by others, for example, by identifying how stereotypes influence perceptions of other groups or individuals
    11. understanding that each Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person inherits language as part of their birthright, along with membership of a particular group and attachment to Country or Place, and that they become custodians and owners of land, water or sea and of language
Role of language building Elaborations
  1. Explore language building processes and protocols in communities (VCLVU194)
    1. investigating language revival efforts in their own community and neighbouring regions, for example, who and what is involved, successes, challenges and protocols, and what these efforts mean to local communities
    2. understanding what lexical and grammatical resources and processes are available to build language, for example, linguistic resources and analogies from neighbouring languages, speakers, archival material
    3. investigating/understanding protocols for filling gaps and extending semantic domains in the language, including protocols for borrowing from other languages, for creating words by analogy and drawing from within the resources of the language, and discussing associated ethical issues
    4. investigating/researching the protocols for receiving, transferring and publishing linguistic resources
    5. understanding the importance of intergenerational collaboration in reviving languages, and discussing some of the associated challenges
    6. discussing the importance of reviving languages for the individual, the language community and the wider Australian society
    7. identifying potential avenues/domains for expansion of the language and gaps to be filled, with the support of community language teams and respected community members
    8. appreciating the role of languages advocacy, education and research in building languages
    9. understanding how the process of language-building expands existing linguistic and cultural resources in the Australian community
  2. Investigate and explain techniques used to build language, considering challenges involved and understanding their role as contemporary documenters of language (VCLVU195)
    1. identifying and discussing the main areas of the language that could be served by language building
    2. analysing the authenticity of historical sources used in language building and discuss the strengths and limitations of these
    3. investigating different approaches that have historically been used to record language and what this means for language revival, for example, different spellings, different domains of use, lexical biases
    4. understanding challenges in developing new words and structures for the language, and how these words might be developed within the existing resources of the language or by analogy from related languages
    5. discussing techniques used to build language, such as analysing historical sources, interviewing/recording existing speakers
    6. understanding the orthographic and grammatical choices of the contemporary community
    7. considering domains of use where the language may grow in the future
    8. trying out ways of making new words under the guidance of an Aboriginal languages specialist or a respected community member where appropriate
    9. working with local Aboriginal communities in language-related projects, and contributing to local language records and resources through structured and research-based projects
    10. understanding their role as contemporary documenters of the language, for example, listening and transcribing spoken texts, preserving language resources developed at school
    11. developing a variety of resources for younger and future students of the language
    12. investigating programs and initiatives that serve to maintain and strengthen language use, for example, school languages programs, bilingual education, research programs, recording and archiving material, websites, databases and documentaries
    13. exploring the importance of advocacy in supporting the maintenance and development of language and culture

Levels 7 to 10 Achievement Standard

By the end of Level 10, students use the language to initiate, sustain and extend interactions, and to exchange information about interests, experiences and aspirations. They use spontaneous language wherever possible to participate in activities that involve taking action, collaborating, planning, organising and negotiating. They use culturally appropriate norms and skills, and respect protocols when engaging with and learning from visiting respected community members. When interacting in the classroom, they make suggestions, seek clarification, praise or compliment each another. Students use language where possible to locate, analyse and summarise factual information from a range of sources such as historical documents, and respected community members. They demonstrate their understanding of Country/Place, for example, by explaining the origin, meaning and significance of local place names and features, or by presenting texts and stories about the Country/Place and associated social and cultural events, using language as much as possible and different modes of presentation. Students view, listen to, and share personal responses to a range of texts, such as songs, stories, films...

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