ACT Workshops

The National Gallery of Australia is partnering with the Schools Reconciliation Challenge 2019 to offer workshops and resources for students and teachers  inspired by the 2019 theme Speaking and Listening from the Heart.

Body Language is the exciting first exhibition in NGA’s new Learning Gallery. Body Language explores language as embedded within oral traditions, pattern, design and as a means of keeping stories alive from generation to generation, highly relevant in the United Nations Year of Indigenous Languages. The identities of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities are diverse. Through story, dance, song, kinship, carvings, painting and markings on bodies and objects, this exhibition seeks to highlight the rich complexity of Australia’s Indigenous cultural expression. See below for workshops and resources connected to Body Language and the NGA’s expansive permanent collection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art.

The National Gallery of Australia is home to the largest collection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art in the world. Through this collection we celebrate the diversity and richness of Indigenous cultures, promoting the contributions made by our first peoples to the rich cultural fabric of Australia.

See and Create Workshops: Identity

July and August, Free, 2 hours, Bookings essential

NGA educators will guide students through Body Language and the broader Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Galleries to see and discuss several works of art and then create their own visual responses. These workshops are subject to availability and offered Monday – Friday from 10am to 3.30pm.

For information on how to book via the Book Canberra Excursions platform visit




Opportunities for students

Indigenous Cultural Experience Workshops

19 – 23 August, Free, 2-3 Hours, Bookings essential, places limited

Local Indigenous artists and NGA educators will expose students to the living culture of the local region and develop their appreciation for the diversity and richness of Indigenous culture through art.  Students will then create a visual or written response to the theme Speaking and listening from the heart, which may then be submitted as an entry to the Schools Reconciliation Challenge. NGA will arrange for these students’ entries to be transported to Reconciliation NSW for judging to take place.

For more information and to express interest email

Opportunities for teachers

Professional Learning: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art

Free, 2 hours, TQI Accredited, Available by request, subject to availability

All students should engage in reconciliation, respect and recognition of the world’s oldest living culture, that of our first nations people, an ambition set out and reinforced through the Australian Curriculum Cross Curriculum Priority for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures.

NGA’s free TQI accredited professional learning sessions for teachers aim to support teachers to develop their understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Art and concepts of country/place and identity. Educators facilitating the sessions will tailor the content to include works of art appropriate to the age of students taught and what might best engage them.

For more information and to express interest email .


Resources for teachers

Access the Body Language online education resource which includes making and responding activities linked to the exhibition that could be undertaken prior to, following or independent of a visit to the exhibition.

NGA has also developed lesson plans on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art aligned to the Australian curriculum for Year 7 and 8 Visual Arts, access it here.

Proudly supported by the ACT Government Education Directorate.
Teachers Click Here

This Kit was developed in consultation with the Board of Studies Teaching and Educational Standards NSW (BOSTES) to ensure that the competition meets NSW curriculum outcomes for Stages 3, 4 & 5.

Enter by 30 August 2019

Submit Here