DUST ECHOES – Animations based on twelve Dreamtime Stories from Central Arnhem Land

Twelve Dreamtime stories from Central Arnhem Land.

Made in collaboration with the Djilpin Aboriginal Arts Corporation, they are stories of love, loyalty, duty to Country, and Aboriginal custom and law.

Access all twelve stories here

Each chapter is supported by in-depth study guides created by ATOM, addressing the cross-curriculum priorities of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures.

Guiding Questions:

Chapter 1: Whirlpool Song

Can you find the Limmen Bight River and Roper River on a map of Arnhem Land? Where do you think the freshwater and saltwater people might be from?

What is your interpretation of the story told in the animation? What do you think is the message of the story?

Chapter 2: Mermaid Story

Looking at an Aboriginal language map of Australia, can you find out where the Dalabon language was spoken? What do you think the country might be like there? Would you expect a story about mermaids to come from this area?

What is your interpretation of the story told in the animation? What do you think is the message of the story?

Chapter 3: Brolga song

Old Victor wanted to know if was he Yirritja or Dhuwa? Can you find out what this question means?

This story is called Brolga Song. What do you understand about how animals are very important to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples?

Chapter 4: Morning Star

What do you think is the importance of the story? What messages do you think the storyteller wants to pass on?

Banumbirr or Morning Star is important to Yolgnu culture. Can you find out her planetary name in the solar system?

Chapter 5: Namorrodor

In Aboriginal astronomy and storytelling, meteors are often associated with evil magic or entities. Why do you think this might be?

Namorrodor is a scary story. Scary stories are common in fairy tales. Find another example of a scary story that’s told to children.

Chapter 6: The Curse

Do you think this story is meant to be a cautionary tale? What message do you think the story is trying to convey?

What do you think of the way magic is presented in the story? What motivations do the characters have to use magic?

Chapter 7: Moon Man

Can you find out the Indigenous name for the moon in your local area? There are many online resources on Aboriginal astronomy that can help.

What do you think are the main ideas behind the story? What might they have to do with the rise and fall of the moon?

Chapter 8: The Be

The stories we tell reveal a lot about our culture and what we value. How would you describe what happens in this story? What do you think is the central message?

Chapter 9: Spear

The number seven is significant in this story. Can you identify where groups of seven appear in the story?

Chapter 10: The Wagalak Sisters

The Wagalak Sisters are Dreamtime figures. What does this mean?

Chapter 11: The Bat and the Butterfly

What do you think is the central message of this story? Who do you think is the intended audience for this?

Chapter 12: the Mimis

Other-worldly beings who teach humans valuable lessons are common to stories around the world. Can you think of some other examples?

Teachers Click Here

Many of these resources and activities have been developed in consultation with NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) to ensure that the program meets NSW curriculum outcomes for Stages 3, 4 & 5.