Rain, hail or shine! Learning about Indigenous Weather Systems
Children are naturally fascinated by the weather. It constantly changes, it’s all around them, they can watch it and experience it, which makes it a topic they can easily relate to! Weather also provides a perfect STEM opportunity to talk to your children about Indigenous knowledge systems and how Indigenous people have developed intricate, incredibly complex and amazing understandings of the weather and climate of our country.
This knowledge is passed on primarily through oral storytelling, song and dance. Indigenous weather knowledge systems are based often around observations of the world around them; seasonal changes are marked by changes in plant or animal lifecycles, reflecting the cyclical thinking of ‘all things are connected’.
Australia's climate is diverse. We have everything - monsoon tropics, desert, savannah, alpine and temperate regions. As a result, in some regions, Aboriginal people do not divide the seasons into four seasons like the European calendar, but rather can be 2, 4, 6 or even 8 different seasons based on changes in the environment. Big Fella Rain is a wonderful example of these changes, and pays homage to the transition from dry season to wet season through beautiful, evocative illustrations and descriptions.
You can learn more about Indigenous Weather Systems here: