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National Sorry Day (Education Kit)

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Brand: ATOM
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SKU: EK0002
Year Levels: 6-12

ATOM Education Kits (eKits) consist of downloadable teaching and learning resources to support educators with delivering Australian Curriculum learning outcomes by using media as teaching tools in the classroom.


National Sorry Day is commemorated in Australia on the 26 May each year, in acknowledgement of the mistreatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who were forcibly removed from their families and communities, which we now know as 'The Stolen Generations'. A day to acknowledge the strength of Stolen Generations Survivors, and reflect on how all Australians can play a part in the healing process of reconciliation.

The learning resources in this e-Kit consist of six ATOM study guides covering Australian films and documentary programs about the Stolen Generations.

Year Level: Suitable for primary level (Grade 6), secondary (Year levels 7–12) and tertiary learning.

Curriculum Links: English, Media, Studies of Society and Environment (SOSE), Australian History, Cultural Studies, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures, Media, Religion and Society, Civics and Citizenship, Film Studies.


1. Stolen Generations (3-in-1 ATOM Study Guide)

This study guide covers a trio of programs (Lousy Little Sixpence, Stolen Generations and Land of the Little Kings) about the removal of Aboriginal children from their families for no reason other than the fact of their Aboriginality. All three programs explore the common theme of the social and emotional dislocation caused to Aboriginal families and communities by the removal of children, but each film takes a different focus. From the earliest years of the twentieth century to the present struggles for Land Rights and Reconciliation, these films examine the personal fallout from a policy whose impact is still being felt in Aboriginal communities today.

2. Rabbit Proof Fence (ATOM Study Guide)

Based on the true story and experiences of three young Aboriginal girls, Molly, Gracie and Daisy, who were forcibly taken from their families in Jigalong, Western Australia in 1931. Focusing on the escape of the three girls from Moore River in the 1930s, the film highlights the despair experienced by mothers whose children were taken, and the terror and confusion of those children, snatched from familiar surroundings and forced to adapt to European ways. The film puts a human face on the 'Stolen Generations', a phenomenon which characterised relations between the government and Aborigines in Australia for much of the 20th century. 

3. Croker Island Exodus (ATOM Study Guide)

A true story that weaves historical footage with interviews and re-enactments to paint a surprising and uplifting portrait of children who were part of the stolen generations and grew up on Croker Island Mission. During World War Two before and after the bombing of Darwin in the Northern Territory, ninety-five Indigenous children and three missionary women fled Croker Island off the north-east coast of Arnhem Land and travelled 5000 kilometres by boat, foot, canoe, truck and rail to safety in Sydney.

4. Wash My Soul in the River's Flow (ATOM Study Guide)

A documentary on the cinematic reinvention of a legendary concert, Kura Tungar – Songs From The River, which premiered in 2004 and was staged in the spirit of Reconciliation at a time when the Australian government had not yet apologised to the Stolen Generations. First Nations singer-songwriters Archie Roach and the late Ruby Hunter collaborated with celebrated composer-conductor Paul Grabowsky and the 22-piece Australian Art Orchestra (AAO) to create this astonishing work that premiered at the Hamer Hall in Melbourne. Telling onstage stories about their lives with songs about the Murray River and Ngarrindjeri Country – where Ruby spent her early childhood with her grandparents and siblings before she was stolen – the concert received a rapturous standing ovation in a full house of over 2000 people.

5. Bringing Uncle Home (ATOM Study Guide)

A surprising twist to the legacy of the Stolen Generation, an Aboriginal Elder re-buries his long-deceased uncle in 'Country'. This is the story of one Indigenous family's search for reconnection – a generation after it was torn apart by an Australian government policy of forcibly removing Aboriginal children from their parents. We follow the journey of ailing Norm Brown who is embarking on a quest to right a wrong and return his Uncle Kitchener to 'Country' and the place from where he was stolen. A powerful story about family and belonging, about the importance of being buried in your own country.

6. From The Western Frontier - Series 3 (ATOM Study Guide)

The third instalment of the From the Western Frontier documentary series examines the legacy of the Stolen Generations policies through the eyes of young Aboriginal women. Eighteen-year-old Brianne Yarran is a talented dancer and in her last year of high school. For her final-year performance she decides to use her Nannas' Stolen Generations experience and story as the inspiration for her solo dance routine.

Please note: Access to view the films is not included in the kit.


1. Watch Lousy Little Sixpence via The Education Shop

2. Watch Rabbit Proof Fence via ClickView

3. Watch Croker Island Exodus via The Education Shop

4. Watch Wash My Soul in the River’s Flow via ClickView

5. Watch Bringing Uncle Home via Culture Unplugged

6. Watch From the Western Frontier (Series 3) via The Education Shop





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