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DISPLAYING POSTS TAGGED: children (6)

Kids Fest - PLAY!

Author
by Phil
Publish date
30 June 2014
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It’s that time of year again, when we get incredibly excited about the amazing visitors coming to our Winter Kids Fest at the Immigration Museum - and this year they will be coming to PLAY! This year’s festival provides children and parents with the opportunity to experience a range of fun and exciting indoor and outdoor games, toys and activities from many cultures.

Children everywhere like to play with balls, jump, run and chase each other.  However the rules and equipment they use may be different depending on their own cultural traditions. Some games were originally based on religious ceremonies, while other games were based on mythology, folk customs and the routines of everyday life. On Sunday 6 July, children and their families will get the opportunity to discover these and many more for themselves.

Crowd of visitors in the Immigration Museum Theatrette. Crowd of visitors in the Immigration Museum Theatrette.
Image: Jon Augier
Source: Museum Victoria
 

On the ground floor we will have performances of Indigenous hip hop dancing along with a Punch and Judy Magic Show, while roving performances from the King Marong African drumming group will keep us entertained throughout the day.

  Children participating in workshops and activities during Kids Fest Punch and Judy during Kids Fest
Image: Jon Augier
Source: Museum Victoria
 

Upstairs we will be discovering traditional children’s games with the Play Lady in our Community Gallery and play traditional games enjoyed all over the world, including jacks, marbles, elastics, and spinning tops. In the Long Room there will be an opportunity for the children to make their own toys, in particular a kite to fly outside or decorate a set of babushka dolls. There will also be a treasure hunt challenge to find toys in our exhibitions – how many will your family find? 

Girl playing with babushka dolls Girl playing with babushka dolls
Image: Jon Augier
Source: Museum Victoria
 

In the Immigration Discovery Centre children will be able to challenge friends and family to a battle of tic tac toe, chess, snakes & ladders, or dominoes. There will also be a selection of online multicultural games available on our computers.

School Visitors Immigration Museum Children playing chess
Image: Rodney Start
Source: Museum Victoria
 

Meanwhile the fun will continue outside in the Festival and Market Street Courtyards for children to get active with skipping, quoits, bucket stilts, bocce, hopscotch and much more.

  Two children, a girl and a boy playing with coloured balls Two children, a girl and a boy playing with coloured balls
Image: Jon Augier
Source: Museum Victoria
 

Join in the revelry and celebrate worldwide games, toys and activities at this special one day festival.

Let the games begin!

In-Flight at the Royal Children’s Hospital

Author
by Alex
Publish date
25 March 2013
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Alex Price is a Programs Officer at the Immigration Museum. She has a passion for Cultural Diversity education and Early Learning.

In celebration of Cultural Diversity Week, the Immigration Museum Education and Community Programs team took the In-Flight installation to the Royal Children’s Hospital on Tuesday 19 March 2013.

Originally part of the Another Country artist in residence series held at Immigration Museum, In-Flight is an installation conceived by Filipino-born and Brisbane-based artists Isabel and Alfredo Aquilizan.  The installation references a transitional place of leave-taking and homecoming and due to popular demand, it has continued to grow in the second floor foyer of the Immigration Museum.

group of people sitting around a table making planes from recycled material In-Flight at the Immigration Museum
Image: Rodney Start
Source: Museum Victoria

Visitors are invited to rummage through recycled plastic bottles, cardboard boxes, felt, string, icy-pole sticks and much more to gather materials to make a mini aeroplane. Once completed, the planes are taken home or added to the large overhead structure. Constructions range from conventional bi-planes to more creative interpretations of the most common form of transport used to immigrate today.

The Education Institute of the Royal Children’s Hospital invited the Immigration Museum to partner with them during Cultural Diversity Week by setting up a smaller scale version of the installation in their ‘Main Street.’ 

I assisted and spent a day at the hospital meeting families and encouraging them to participate. We brought two big containers of assorted materials, scissors, elastic and string but no stickytape or glue were allowed, in keeping with the original concept to encourage creative thinking.

children working on in-flight In-Flight at the Royal Children’s Hospital
Image: Alex Price

Children who created aeroplanes included those visiting outpatient clinics as well as long term patients who came down from the wards. Some spent over an hour making planes, assisted by their relatives who had come to visit, and the hospital teachers.  Five children from the Early Learning Centre also joined in and departed excitedly with their creations.

plane made from recycled material In-Flight at the Royal Children’s Hospital
Image: Alex Price

Visitors to the hospital were encouraged to also come along to the Immigration Museum and participate in the larger In- Flight installation, an ongoing and ever-changing activity.

Links:

In-flight at the Immigration Museum

Junior entomologists get the bug

Author
by Wayne
Publish date
18 March 2013
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Chauliognathus lugubris. The Plague Soldier Beetle. This wee beast accounts for hundreds of insect identification requests we receive at the Discovery Centre during the summer. At this time of year these little pollinators descend from the crowns of flowering trees to indulge in seething masses of mating activity triggered by hot weather.

This frenzied 'coupling' activity rarely goes unnoticed, especially because of the numbers in which the beetles congregate– we often get calls from people describing masses of these little cigar-shaped critters with their distinctive orange collars in their gardens; regular readers will have read our earlier post about Plague Soldier Beetles.

Last week, however, it seems this beast and its plaguing behaviour caught the attention of the Rainbow Lorikeet class at Dame Nellie Melba Kindergarten in Richmond. The Lorikeets' teacher Adam contacted us with an identification request, accompanied by some photographs and observations of the insects in question from the students, some of which I’ll share below:

  Grace from Dame Nellie Melba Kindergarten holds the 'mystery beetle' for a photo Grace from Dame Nellie Melba Kindergarten holds the 'mystery beetle' for a photo
Image: Adam Shrivell
Source: Adam Shrivell
 

It has 3 legs and 3 legs (from Sylvie). They have two antennae (coming) out of their head (from Andrew and Hugo) 

A great start for young eyes – these are key characteristics of insects that separate them from other arthropods

I think it's a stink bug (from Ralph) and I think it's a beetle (From Taj) 

These are also good observations. Like the animals we call 'stink bugs', they can emit an unpleasant liquid as a defence mechanism.

I think it's a grass hopper (from Harry) 

Harry isn’t quite right here, but the plague behaviour is similar to locusts, so still a good observation.

It's a beetle and he flies away and he has the mummy and the daddy and the baby and the dog (from Jed) 

Apart from the bit about the dog, Jed is also on the money.

I think they only come out once a year in summer (from Grace) 

Grace has also hit the nail on the head – clearly we have some budding entomologists here!

They carry each other (from Lucas) 

In a manner of speaking, yes they do – but we may leave this to Lucas's guardians to explain further if required.

Alexander, Lucas and Grace gathering a specimen Alexander, Lucas and Grace gathering a specimen
Image: Adam Shrivell
Source: Adam Shrivell
 

As seasoned respondents to enquiries of all types from the public, we thought the Rainbow Lorikeets were particularly clever in separating their observations into 'what we think' and 'what we know' – in doing so, they were more than half-way there with their identification by the time it reached us. This, along with the photos, made our entomologist’s job quite easy in providing the identification as Plague Soldier Beetles.

Dame Nellie Melba Kindergarten's Rainbow Lorikeets, with teacher Adam Dame Nellie Melba Kindergarten's Rainbow Lorikeets, with teacher Adam
Image: Adam Shrivell
Source: Adam Shrivell
 

Well done Rainbow Lorikeets, we in the Discovery Centre are impressed with your entomology skills!

There Once Was An Irish Kids Fest…

Author
by Siobhan
Publish date
30 January 2013
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There Once Was An Irish Kids Fest…

On Sunday 18 January we hosted 1,952 people here at Immigration Museum for the Irish Kids Fest, and what a fabulous day it was!  So much of the dialogue around the Irish diaspora at the moment is focused on the harsh economic conditions that make a life away from home more viable, but this was a day to revel in what we love about being Irish and to share the fun of Irish culture and arts.

Céili and set dancing workshop Céili and set dancing workshop
Image: Justine Philip
Source: Museum Victoria
 

In the courtyard, dancers of all ages from the Christine Ayres School of Irish Dancing displayed their intricate footwork and helped children find their feet during céili and set dancing workshops.

Learning céili dance moves Learning céili dance moves
Image: Justine Philip
Source: Museum Victoria
   

Throughout the day, children and families heard Irish tales from storyteller Oisín McKenna, found the lost treasure of Ireland during interactive theatre performances with Jack and Molly (Vince and Margie Brophy) and also had fun playing our Federation handbells, making Claddagh crowns and illuminated bookmarks.

Irish storytelling session Irish storytelling session
Image: Justine Philip
Source: Museum Victoria
 

Here at the Discovery Centre, Simon and I helped people to get started on their family history journeys, using the resources available through the National Archives of Australia and the Public Records Office of Victoria.  But best of all, we hosted a limerick writing competition, with a sweet or sticker for every entry, and hourly main prizes for the best ones.  There were LOTS of amazing entries, and it was really hard to choose between them!  We displayed the rest of our favourites on our board for the rest of the week for people to enjoy.

  One of the fantastic limerick competition winners One of the fantastic limerick competition winners
Image: Phil Morrissey
Source: Museum Victoria
 

I’m sure it will come as no surprise that we had a few limerick entries from grownups – they certainly made us laugh, but I’m afraid I can’t share them here.  My favourite was about a young sailor and his predilection for dancing. I’ll leave the rest of that one as an exercise for the reader! 

  Learning to play the bodhrán (Irish drum) Learning to play the bodhrán (Irish drum)
Image: Justine Philip
Source: Museum Victoria
 

A busy day full of great craic – can’t wait to see you all again at the next Kids Fest!

Nitty Gritty Super Kids

Author
by Alexandra
Publish date
31 October 2011
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Comments (1)

Alexandra is the Early Learning Program Coordinator at Scienceworks. She loves exploring the ways in which science engages young children.

As part of a fabulous partnership with DEECD Western Metropolitan Region (WMR) Laverton Community Children's Centre recently made their very first visit to Nitty Gritty Super City. These children hail from the fastest-growing region in Australia, as well as being amongst the most culturally and linguistically diverse.

This is what it looked like on the big day:

Finding clothes to wear on a sunny Melbourne day Finding clothes to wear on a sunny Melbourne day.
Image: Kimalee Reid
Source: DEECD
 

Using the lever to operate the digger Using the lever to operate the digger.
Image: Kimalee Reid
Source: DEECD
 

We-hoisted-the-bricks-up-using-the-rope-and-pulley-web We hoisted the bricks up using the rope and pulley.
Image: Kimalee Reid
Source: Museum Victoria
 

We played in the Scienceworks playground We played in the Scienceworks playground.
Image: Kimalee Reid
Source: DEECD
 

The kids had a great time and the day's event was a great first step to encourage an interest in science for these early learners. We hope to see them back again soon! 

Links:

Department of Education and Early Childhood Development

Education programs for Nitty Gritty Super City

30th anniversary of Play and Folklore

Author
by Kate C
Publish date
14 May 2011
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I loved the Far Out, Brussel Sprout books when I was a kid. Do you remember them? They stood from the other children’s books because they were filled with all the cheeky rhymes and sayings that kids actually used in the playground, rather than the sterilised stuff that teachers and parents wanted us to read. These books were compiled by Dr June Factor, writer and folklorist, and founding editor of the journal Play and Folklore.

Play and Folklore is devoted to recording and discussing what children do when largely free of adult direction or control—their colloquial speech, songs, games, rhymes, riddles, jokes, insults and secret languages. Established in 1981, it has been published online by Museum Victoria since 2001 and the April issue just released celebrates the journal’s 30th anniversary.

newspaper football Paper football made from newspaper was constructed at Carlton North Primary School in the mid-1980s. Footballer Peter McKenna describes playing with a newspaper footy as a child in the 1950s in the April 2011 Play and Folklore.
Image: Jennifer McNair
Source: Museum Victoria
 

Dr June Factor and Dr Gwenda Davey began publishing the then-titled Australian Children’s Folklore Newsletter out of the Institute of Early Childhood Development that later became part of the University of Melbourne. Keen observers of children, Dr Factor and Dr Davey began collecting and preserving their folklore in the 1970s. This became the Australian Children’s Folklore Collection (ACFC) which they donated to Museum Victoria in 1999. In 2004, it became the first MV collection to be placed in on the prestigious UNESCO Australian Memory of the World register.

Slingshot Slingshot made from a tree branch, circa 1980-1983. Found on the steps of the Institute of Early Childhood Development, Kew, by Dr June Factor. It had been left there by children who often used the empty car park as a playground at weekends. In the background are index cards used by Dr Factor to record children's rhymes.
Image: Michelle McFarlane
Source: Museum Victoria
 

Deborah Tout-Smith, Senior Curator of Cultural Diversity, is the curator for the ACFC and oversees the production of Play and Folklore. “Children’s folklore is amazing repository of cultural information. In the past a lot of study into children has been adults looking at children [whereas] children’s folklore is a cultural world children themselves preserve and articulate,” said Deborah. “June Factor pointed out that information is handed on between children and never enters the adult world. Sometimes we see remnants of old ideas and practices that have disappeared in the adult world but still continue in children’s folklore.”

The study of children’s folklore has been important while researching the newly-opened exhibition at the Immigration Museum, Identity: yours, mine, ours. “We find the roots of prejudice in the ways children start to notice difference,” explained Deb. “There are distinct phases of understanding that can end up hardening into prejudice, or can become part of embracing difference.” Both the ACFC and Play and Folklore capture children’s culture from around the world and while they have a distinctly Australian flavour, they include the layers of influence from migrant children over the decades.

Links:

Play and Folklore archive (1981-current)

Collections Online: Australian Children's Folklore Collection

Infosheet: Australian Children's Folklore Collection

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Updates on what's happening at Melbourne Museum, the Immigration Museum, Scienceworks, the Royal Exhibition Building, and beyond.

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