Aboriginal education is everybody's business': Powerful indigenous curriculum towards creating global citizens in our classrooms

Year: 2012

Author: Higgins, Aimee

Type of paper: Abstract refereed



Despite successive 'mandatory' policy documents across Australia, it is still widely theorised that Indigenous education in today's primary schools is still dominated by stereotypical curriculum and pedagogy that strongly shapes the attitudes and opinions of this culture in the eyes of our students. This paper explores the dimensions of Indigenous curriculum in aiming to create a purposeful and powerful curriculum that firstly empowers teachers and secondly engages students in Indigenous culture, history and traditions in an attempt to turn our students of today into global citizens of tomorrow.


This ongoing research follows the journey of an Indigenous primary school teacher in creating a curriculum for teachers and students across a spread of five metropolitan schools that each represent the diverse cultural make up of the Sydney region. The research follows a qualitative approach in collecting data from teachers, students and community persons through formal and informal interviews, surveys, document analysis to inform the product of curriculum development. The data firstly aims to collect information from a group of schools that are deemed successful in engaging all students in Indigenous curriculum and use these practices and qualitative data collected to inform the development of a curriculum suited to a second group of schools that are determined to make Indigenous education  more purposeful for student learning.


The data collected across schools aims to inform the development of a curriculum that is purposeful, relevant and powerful for a range of teachers and students in a vast range of teaching contexts.


The research conclusion is based on the idea that powerful and purposeful Indigenous curriculum plays a key role in developing global citizens of the future.