Building Relationships on and with Mother Mountain: Women Incorporating Indigenous Knowledge into Outdoor Learning

  • Lynne Thomas
  • Nicole Taylor
  • Tonia Gray
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Gender and Education book series (GED)


This chapter provides a practical example of how Indigenous Knowledge can be infused into outdoor learning practices made possible by developing a mutually respectful relationship with a sacred site Gulaga (Mother Mountain) and an Aboriginal teacher. Evolving over 15 years, our methods of facilitating outdoor experiences as two white women have been enriched by interweaving these practices. We propose the core teachings involved in Traditional Knowledge involve four pillars: relationships, responsibilities, roles, and respect. These overarching concepts provide a scaffold for re-storying outdoor learning with the intent of intersectionality, thereby creating a relational space with Mother Earth’s wisdom. The pedagogical implications of our collaborative approach are illustrated within a schematic framework to allow practitioners to rethink the synergies involved in the discrete disciplines.


Outdoor learning Place based Indigenous Knowledge Mother Earth’s wisdom Pedagogy Gulaga 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lynne Thomas
    • 1
  • Nicole Taylor
    • 2
  • Tonia Gray
    • 3
  1. 1.Narooma Public SchoolNaroomaAustralia
  2. 2.The University of SydneySydneyAustralia
  3. 3.Centre for Educational Research, Western Sydney UniversityPenrithAustralia

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