A very excited Year 4 cohort travelled to Jellurgal Aboriginal Culture Centre at Tallebudgera Creek on Tuesday 5 March to learn more about the culture of the Yugambeh people. The students watched traditional dances being performed with musical instruments such as the didgeridoo. The students had ochre painted onto their hands or face and learnt that to change the colours of the ochre, Aboriginal people would mix in leaves or berries. The students went on a walk around the headland of Burleigh and learnt the dreamtime story of Jabreen, the giant who used to live in the area.
The students had a fantastic day learning about the Aboriginal culture of the Gold Coast. Here are some of the student’s reflections:
When we first arrived at Jellurgal, we saw many bright and colourful dot paintings on the walls. We entered a room with three Aboriginal men wearing traditional clothing. They were decorated in body paint which they told us is made from a rock called ochre mixed with water. One had a digeridoo, another had boomerangs and was singing in their language called Yugambeh, while the other danced the traditional dances to tell their stories. They sang three songs – the first was to welcome us. They taught us how to say ‘welcome’ in their language, which was ‘jengallie’. They told us their totem was an eagle – this meant it was sacred and they would never hunt it. The last dance was the story of how they would fish mullet.
On the way out, an Aboriginal lady put some ochre on us. We broke up into groups. Along the paths we stopped and talked about how they would have feasts on the beach and bring all the bones and shells back. The next stop was the bush turkey nests. This is where they used to collect eggs and give them to the elders for energy.
We were told the Dreamtime story about Jabreen:
One day a huge giant named Jabreen was really hungry and set out to search for his favourite food: sugar bags. When he came back, he was covered in honey. When he went to wash it off, it all fell to the ground and formed rocks on the ground. He was very tired, so he fell asleep. When he woke up, he felt the ground shaking under him. Then the ground started to close around him. The more he struggled the faster the ground rose, as it could feel his power. He pointed his fingers to the ocean as that was the place he loved most.
As we walked up the mountain, we got to see the fingers pointing out to sea.
We had a fantastic day.
Grace Parma & Hansika Raje
Year 4 Students