Boori Guman: Into the Classroom (Primary Teaching Resource)



Primary Teaching Resource
Written by Bronwyn Cleworth

A Gimuy Walubara Yidinji story of the Rainbow Serpent
and the first fire as told by Elder Gudju Gudju Gondwana Choirs, Lyn Williams AM and Friends

Boori Guman tells the Yidinji story of the origin of fire as shared by Elder Gudju Gudju of the Gimuy Walubara Yidinji people from Cairns in Queensland, Australia. In 2016, composer Owen Elsley collaborated with Elder Gudju Gudju to compose a new work for Gondwana Indigenous Children’s Choir and the Vienna Boys’ Choir. The new work received its premiere at the Sydney Opera House at the 2017 Songs of My Country concert, featuring the Gondwana Indigenous Children’s Choir, the Vienna Boys’ Choir, and the Sydney Children’s Choir with additional Massed Choir, piano and percussion. A story book was published later that year, illustrated by the Gondwana Indigenous Children’s Choir singers from Cairns, and is available for purchase (see page 49). Since then Elsley has created a simplified unison choir arrangement of Boori Guman, suitable for younger musicians.

The following teaching resources provide a rich source of material to enhance young peoples’ experiences, knowledge and understanding of Boori Guman and, more generally, of First Nations language and stories, and of new Australian music.

Primary teachers and students are encouraged to explore Boori Guman through singing, playing, moving, listening, and acting. The activities and source materials provided are designed to be connected and can be used separately or in tandem. Teachers may use the resources and activities as ends in themselves or as starting points for bringing Boori Guman to life in the classroom.

Lower Primary (K-2) and Upper Primary (3-6) resources included.

Writing team:

Dr Felicia Chadwick
Bronwyn Cleworth
Louise Barkl (Editor)
Hester Wright (Editor)

This resource is available for PDF, and can be downloaded after purchase.