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ERIC Number: EJ909857
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 65
ISSN: ISSN-1326-0111
"We're the Mob You Should Be Listening to": Aboriginal Elders at Mornington Island Speak up about Productive Relationships with Visiting Teachers
Bond, Hilary
Australian Journal of Indigenous Education, v39 p40-53 2010
This paper explores, with a qualitative framework, critical social theory and thematic analysis, the narratives of many Aboriginal elders of Mornington Island (Kunhanhaa) about their history and their potential to form productive kin-based relationships with visiting teachers in order to influence the curriculum and pedagogy delivered at the local school. One exemplary teacher's journey provides educational insights that teachers need to be culturally responsive, friendly and compassionate and should heed the advice of senior Indigenous members of a community to be successful teachers. No other teachers are interviewed, nor are the opinions of the Queensland Department of Education sought. I spent from 1998 to mid 2003 researching this topic for my PhD after many of the elders asked for my help to improve the educational outcomes of the local school and the lives of the children in the community. Thirty of the male elders and 12 female elders asked me to help them regain their former positions as teachers at the local school, as they had severe misgivings about prevailing relationship with the teachers and the contribution of the school to their community. This participatory action-research paper positions the elders as active agents, insistent that teachers act as edu-carers to ensure the community's young people's survival in the face of worsening anomie. (Contains 1 figure.)
University of Queensland. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit, Brisbane, Queensland, 4072, Australia. Tel: +61-7-3365-1969; Fax: +61-7-3365-6855; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia