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Storytelling Adventures at The Art Gallery of Western Australia

Home > Perth > Art | Family | Free | Indoor | Public Lectures
by Marina & Elizaveta (subscribe)
My 7yo co-author and I are freelance writers living in astounding Western Australia. We love where we live, we explore it, we embrace it, and we write about it.
Published July 4th 2016
If you are still chasing some ideas of how to entertain your children during these school holidays, then don't miss this one: the Gallery of Western Australia offers many inexpensive (gold coin, but more often free) options to consider. Our kids have previously attended a puppet making course, and also the 'Jackson Pollock style' painting workshop, both of which were great fun (although very messy, especially the latter one!). This time, we've gone to a "Story Telling Adventure", which deserves a couple of special comments of appreciation.

The story came all the way from Derby. The story teller was an amazingly eloquent and friendly aboriginal man, who was raised in the Derby region and who lived and hunted there for many years with his people. Kids loved him and the workshop was positively interactive. All attendees, from young to mature, to our great fascination, learned how to cook a lizard (the secret is in its tail), how to make the oysters open without touching them, how to catch a duck in the billabong, what's growing on top of the cashew nut, how to work out whether the crab is meaty or empty, how to make a didgeridoo, where to go spear fishing (and why do you need yours years for that), what to do if you get bitten by a crab (wood or food?) and many other fascinating stories and tips of survival in the bush.

If you wish to find out the answers to all those questions, then wait no more. Call the AGWA and book your next trip. The workshops are absolutely free and run for approximately 45 minutes. These storytelling adventures are run on the first Sunday of every month. Due to popularity, these sessions fill up pretty quickly. So, call today if you don't want to miss out on the next session!

My co-author Elizaveta (7yo) did quite an essay, which is presented in its native format, "as is". Here is what Elizaveta said:

"On Sunday I went to the Art Gallery to listen to an aboriginal person. I learned that cooking a lizard is not that hard. All you have to do is dig a hole on the ground, catch a lizard, put a fire in the hole and cover the top with sand and leafs and leave it to cook. You need to leave the tail of the lizard sticking out of the ground. Keep on coming back and wiggle the tail, and when the tail breaks off – the lizard is ready to eat!

I also learned that if the crab pinches you, then you need to stay still and then it thinks that you are a piece of wood and will let go, but if you move, the crab will think that you are food and will try to eat you.

Oh, also, in the olden days, when they had no guns to shoot ducks, the aboriginal people used to dive into the billabong, and pull the ducks down by their legs. That's how you catch the duck.

To catch fish, this is what you need to do: you need to throw a stick into the sea, then you need to splash water into some rocks to make a rock-pool, and then you take the fish that was there. You can only take the fish that you can eat, and no more, because that would be greedy.

To check if the ocean is safe, you need to throw the rock into the ocean, and if it bounces back then it means that someone is there and it's not safe to go in. But if the rock does not bounce back, you can go for a swim.

Finally, if you want to eat a crab, you have to check if it's full. Otherwise you won't get much food. You check it by squishing your fingers near the [crab's] legs, if it's squishy, you can let it go because the crab is empty, but if it's hard, you can take it because it's very full!

There are also empty trees called baobabs. They were used to prison the people.

I think it was a very good outing because it was very fun and because Jeremy's voice was very clear. Jeremy was a person who taught us all about it."

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Phone: (08) 94926600
Where: Art Gallery of Western Australia
Cost: Free
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