Pupils learn about rock art at Bur­rup

Pilbara News - - News - Ali­cia Per­era

Pegs Creek Pri­mary Year 4 and 5 stu­dents learnt about Bur­rup Penin­sula an­cient rock art from a lead­ing ex­pert in the field re­cently.

Ar­chae­ol­o­gist and Rio Tinto prin­ci­pal of cul­tural her­itage Dr Ken Mul­vaney spoke to stu­dents last week as part of their Term 2 Hu­man­i­ties and So­cial Sci­ence pro­gram.

He told them about the sig­nif­i­cance of the Bur­rup to its tra­di­tional own­ers, the his­tory of its na­tive an­i­mal species and how peo­ple can help pre­serve it for the fu­ture.

The ear­li­est rock art on the Bur­rup dates back tens of thou­sands of years and Dr Mul­vaney spoke about the an­i­mal, plants, peo­ple, sto­ries and cus­toms they de­pict.

They also had the chance to learn in­ter­ac­tively with some real arte­facts from the area in­clud­ing spear heads, shields, stone axe blades and boomerangs.

Pegs Creek Pri­mary Year 5 teacher Jil­lian Tarca said she and fel­low teacher Janet Gethin had cho­sen the topic be­cause the Bur­rup was so rich in his­tory and her­itage.

“We are try­ing to help stu­dents un­der­stand why the Bur­rup is a spe­cial place to the Abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple and how stu­dents can pro­tect it,” she said.

“It’s to help en­gage the kids to do some­thing lo­cal. We’ve cho­sen a topic where we can in­te­grate his­tory, eco­nomics and geog­ra­phy to cre­ate a rich learn­ing pro­gram.

“We’ve cho­sen the Bur­rup as a con­text the stu­dents can re­late to, so they’re more en­gaged. And it’s im­por­tant.

“They need to know about the his­tory of the place where they live. It helps their un­der­stand­ing of what life was like in the past and what it could be like in the fu­ture.”

Ms Tarca re­cruited Dr Mul­vaney for the talk af­ter see­ing him speak at the Kar­ratha li­brary as part of the Na­tional Her­itage Fes­ti­val.

She said stu­dents had “loved it”, es­pe­cially learn­ing his­tor­i­cal facts they had never heard be­fore, ex­am­in­ing the arte­facts and get­ting a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of how to care for the Bur­rup.

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