Junior School Harmony Day Celebration

Mr Heinrich and students at last year's Harmony Day.

Mr Heinrich and students at last year's Harmony Day.

By Belinda Reitstatter, PYP Coordinator PK?2

National Harmony Day takes place this Friday, 18 March. This is an opportunity for Australians to celebrate the rich cultural heritage and identity of our country. It is about inclusiveness, respect, national pride and a sense of belonging for everyone.

We have chosen to mark this occasion in the Junior School by inviting students to explore their connection with a country of their choice and come to school dressed in a national costume of some kind. We are aware that the request to wear a 'national costume' may be interpreted differently by families and we encourage creativity and individuality on this occasion. In our increasingly global society we are conscious that one child may identify with 'an Australian' quite differently from another. Perspective is a very important concept in every investigation in an International Baccalaureate setting and we look forward to discussing this with students on this day.

We know that children connect with different countries due to various reasons, including their country of birth, their ancestors' country of birth, interests in sporting teams, bands and singers, travel, languages and the arts. We invite you to encourage your child/children to select their own country ? the one they most willingly connect with ? for this occasion. They may wish to create a flag to hold, paint a flag on their face or wear a national costume or a t-shirt that represents a sporting team from a particular country. Australia is also a country with which many of us connect and we warmly welcome students to explore it on Harmony Day.

At lunch time students will eat together from their own lunch boxes as usual. Any families who would like to share more actively on this occasion are welcome to bring a plate of international food to enjoy with the class. Should you wish to do this, please contact your child's classroom teacher directly so we can ensure you are aware of the food allergies specific to that class. Year 5 and 6 students will also be invited to purchase something from the International Food Stall in the senior quad on this day, if this is something that interests them.

Should you require further information please contact me at Belinda.Reitstatter@radford.act.edu.au.

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