About our school

Neville Bonner Primary School is named after Neville Bonner, who was the first Aboriginal member of the Australian Parliament. Neville Bonner's legacy is central to our school ethos. His principles of fairness, integrity, kindness, determination and negotiation to achieve a sustainable future of dignity and equity for all, inspires our school in all that it does.

Our school 'Welcome Song', written by Kimberley Steele and Georgie Green, encapsulates Neville Bonner's ongoing influence on our school.

Neville Bonner Matters

Welcome here everyone,

Neville Bonner matters.

Inside beauty,

Neville Bonner matters.

We make friends and help each other,

Neville Bonner matters.

School Logo

Neville Bonner was born on Ukerabagh Island, located at the mouth of the Tweed River, country of the Jagara people.

He was born under a palm tree on the island on 28 March in 1922.

Our school logo was designed by Yuggera (Jagara) elder, Aunty Joyce Summers.  Aunty Joyce is the last living person to also have been born on Ukerabagh Island.  The blue section of the logo is the shape of Ukerabagh Island and the palm fronds represent the tree under which Neville Bonner was born.

School Song - Yunggaballi (Sing)

The Neville Bonner Primary School Song was kindly commissioned by the school and Principal, Fran Dawning. The students of Years 5/6 of 2013 and with the assistance of staff member Jenny Halpin formed part of the process in producing the words of the song. The Australian composer James Madsen worked with the students in order to gain an insight into the ethos of the school, and then went about composing the song for the new school with the ideas shared.

The song makes reference to a river, a natural symbol used often in indigenous culture. Neville Bonner is also said to have been born on an island on a river in northern New South Wales and then had an inspiring life journey to become the first Aboriginal senator of Australia’s Federal Parliament.

The chorus of the song uses Ngunnawal language, a traditional indigenous language of the area of the school and surrounding country on which Canberra was built.

Murranga – hand

Gadi – search for knowledge

Yunggaballi – sing

The idea of using these words is that learning involves the three connected aspects of the body, mind and spirit. Murranga represents the hands of the learner, as well as the guiding hands of teachers; Gadi represents the mind being inspired and the search for knowledge; Yunggaballi represents singing together with joy in the heart. The body percussion used in the song should reflect the use of these three aspects of learning- the hand with claps, the mind with clicking fingers beside head and the heart by patting chest with arms crossed.

Yunggaballi (Sing)

Like a river that flows through this land
Show me a path with your guiding hand
Like a river that flows through this land
Show me a path with your guiding hand
And together we can all sing with joy in our hearts
And together we can all sing as we reach for the stars
Yunggaballi, murranga, yunggaballi, gadi
Yunggaballi, murranga, yunggaballi, sing, yunggaballi, sing!
(body percussion)
Yunggaballi, sing!
May this river of knowledge flow free
And inspire my mind on this journey
May this river of knowledge flow free
And inspire my mind on this journey
And together we can all sing with joy in our hearts
And together we can all sing as we reach for the stars
Yunggaballi, murranga, yunggaballi, gadi
Yunggaballi, murranga, yunggaballi, sing, yunggaballi, sing!
Yunggaballi, murranga, yunggaballi, gadi
Yunggaballi, murranga, yunggaballi, sing, yunggaballi, sing!
(body percussion)
Yunggaballi, gadi, yunggaballi, gadi
Yunggaballi, sing!
(clap, click, click, pat)

Music by James Madsen

Words by James Madsen with assistance from Jenny Halpin and students from Years 5/6 of 2013

Houses

In 2014 community consultation was held to determine the names of Houses for our new school.  The vote was narrowed to three categories:

  • Important Aboriginal leaders
  • Trees - using the Ngunnawal language
  • Weather elements – using the Ngunnawal language

When the category was identified by vote as Weather Elements, our Year 6/5 Soaring Stars Learning Group nominated and voted for the names and colours of our four Houses.

HOUSE
(Ngunnawal Language)
MEANINGCOLOUR
Kanbi Fire Red
Garrit Rain Blue
Winyu Sun Yellow
Murungal Thunder Green