The production and distribution of Burarra talking books
journal contributionposted on 2008-01-01, 00:00 authored by R Darcy, Glenn AuldGlenn Auld
The use of ICT’s to support literacy in a minority Indigenous Australian language is an important domain of pedagogy that is often overlooked by teachers in these contexts. The development of new technological configurations in remote communities can be highly supportive of Indigenous languages spoken by a small number of people. This paper reports on a case study in which talking books were constructed in Burarra, a language spoken by approximately 1000 people in Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory. The research adopts a critical approach to technology to follow the construction of Burarra talking books in a remote homeland context and the display of these texts on computers in a home environment. Examples of the talking books and video of the interactions with these texts are included to highlight the technological configurations that surround the production and consumption of Burarra Talking Books. This paper explores the learning opportunities surrounding drill and practice software that contain highly valued images of everyday social practices mediated in an Indigenous Australian language in a remote location. We suggest that simple talking books used in an off-line environment at home can be highly effective in providing Indigenous children with connectedness to places of significance and offer the children with opportunities to develop their literacy pathways in their first language.