Pupils learn about rock art at Burrup
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.