Bidhi Galing is a picture story book inspired by Anita Heiss’ award winning novel Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray, so children, educators and families can share and learn from this important piece of Australian history together. Culture is Life are proud to have developed the accompanying education resources for Bidhi Galing in collaboration with Lead Writer, Shelley Ware.

Bidhi Galing is a beautiful and captivating story based on true events of the flood plains of Gundagai shared through the life of the main character Wagadhaany. This stunning picture story book pays tribute to the heroes Yarri and Jacky Jacky who saved many people from the Great Flood of 1852 in Gundagai.

All of the work and words within Anita Heiss’ novel Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray which led to Bidhi Galing, embody some of the values of the Wiradyuri people Anita thinks of when she writes about herngurambang (Country); values of yindyamarra (respect), murrumbang (love), ngumbadal (unity) and winhangagigilanha (caring for each other).

Wiradyuri values are about the community, not the individual, and when you look at the Wiradyuri word ‘ngumambinya’ (trust for help) it reminds us to rely on others for what is needed. To trust in reciprocity – and that you receive what you need when you need it, and when you are ready for it. And then you are in a place to give back to community, to others.

We hope Bidhi Galing and curriculum aligned education resources will encourage you to learn more about your local history, and the Aboriginal language of your own area, and moving forward incorporate this knowledge into your everyday life. Anita Heiss worked in consultation with her elders and senior cultural advisors when writing the novel Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray which inspired this version of the story.

The Education Resources

Considerations for Teachers

Please consider local protocols and cultural safety, in providing a safe space for young people to learn, ask questions and express their thoughts and feelings.

It is important to first consider any Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children reading this book and how the perspectives and themes could impact them. In light of recent floods throughout Australia, please take the welfare of your particular cohort of children into consideration whilst reading this book.

Creating a culturally safe space in your classroom and school is vital. To help you create this safe space and be sure you are following local protocols, take some time to read the Culture is Life ‘Teaching First Nations Knowledges & Perspectives‘ before you read Bidhi Galing in your classroom.

Resources for Teachers

To assist teachers in delivering the curriculum for Bidhi Galing, you can freely access the ‘Resources for Teachers’ below. This is an A4 PDF designed with teachers in mind, to lead your students through the resources in your classroom.

Resources for Students

To assist teachers in delivering the curriculum for Bidhi Galing, you can freely access the ‘Resources for Students’ that you can display for your students in your classroom on a screen. We hope that the illustrations and exercises in the presentation deepens students’ connection with the book, and further supports your teaching from the PDF.

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