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Encounters. Indigenous contact and culture: a classroom resource

Caution: This website includes images and names of deceased people that may cause distress to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Dieri country

Killalpaninna, South Australia

Lake Killalpaninna, in the arid interior of South Australia, has always been a sacred place for Dieri people, and in the 1800s attracted pastoralists and missionaries. Explore the Dieri people's ongoing connection to the lake, their language and children's games.

  • Map of Australia showing location of Killalpaninna, South Australia.
    Killalpaninna, South Australia
  • Photograph of small green shrubs in a sandy landscape.
    Setting the scene
  • An inscribed wooden boomerang.
    Kira (boomerang)
  • An oblong shaped solid wood shield , incised with patterns that include dots, lines and two concentric circles.
    Ancestral Journey shield
  • Willie Dawson with a shield.
    Shield maker Willie Dawson
  • Three smooth edged circular and oval shaped pebbles.
    Pirkini marda children's game pieces
  • A red tennis ball with text printed on it in black that reads 'SCHOOL / PROPERTY'. The letters 'JP1' also appear handwritten in black marker on the ball. Two small orange witches hats. The letters 'WPS' Have been written on the side in black marker but they are worn and scratched.
    Tennis ball and witches hats


Match the ideas

What do you know about Killapaninna?

Video story

Learn about wild peaches 

Watch this video of Dieri woman Skye Miklavek talking about wild peaches.

Activity: List the things that Skye reveals about wild peaches, or quandongs. Where do you think Skye learnt about wild peaches? Learn some more about the quandong. What does it look like? What might it taste like? How could you cook with it? Can you use it for medicine? How else could you use it? You can find more information on the Black Olive website or ABC Alice Springs. If you have time, you could cook a quandong recipe and enjoy!

More activities

Pirkini marda children's game pieces

Activity: Watch this Behind the News clip on Indigenous games to find out some more about traditional Indigenous games. You could play some! Break into small groups and have each group learn a game to teach to the rest of the class.

Ancestral Journey shield

Activity: Willie Dawson’s shield is decorated with a map that tells a story. Create an artwork or design an object that features a map of somewhere you know or that tells a particular story.

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