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MELC supported projects for students

MELC supported projects for students are designed to support contemporary and innovative initiatives that engender experimentation and renewal in languages education, multicultural education and the internationalisation of education.

Each year MELC provides funding for contemporary and innovative school-based projects that provide opportunities for students to actively engage in and reflect upon linguistic and cultural diversity, and to consider their own linguistic, social and cultural practices and identities.

MELC projects are based on the principles of:

  • Engagement – fostering direct engagement with linguistic and cultural diversity
  • Learning in diversity - ensuring that students are engaged in experiences that promote learning about themselves/others and their learning in the context of diversity
  • Identity formation - ensuring that students are invited to reflect on their own perspectives, identities, belonging and to develop  self-awareness of their education and life experience in the context of diversity
  • Experience – are experientially focused
  • Imagination  - fostering imagination and creativity
  • Participation – inviting participation in early childhood centres, schools and the wider community
  • Opportunities – affording opportunities for participation of marginalised young people
  • Reflection – including opportunities for evaluating and reflecting on experiences of linguistic and cultural diversity

Schools from all schooling sectors are invited to apply to participate in MELC projects. 
Opportunities for schools to apply for the next round of MELC supported projects for students will open in early Term 3 2018.

New projects - applications now open

Each year MELC invites project providers to submit, for consideration, a project proposal based on the MELC principles. Projects are assessed according to MELC project principles and published assessment criteria.

Applications are now open to project providers to submit project proposals for 2018/19.

For more detailed information please refer to the information sheet for project providers

To apply for a grant, please complete the application form and email it to education.mecs [at] sa.gov.au

Applications close at 5pm Friday 25 May 2018.

Current Projects

The following are projects that MELC are undertaking in schools throughout 2018.

Young Cultural Leaders program – ActNow Theatre

The Young Cultural Leaders program is designed as a theatre residency that brings a team of professional artists to work with groups of linguistically and culturally diverse young people in secondary schools.

Students will actively participate in and reflect upon linguistic and cultural diversity, and consider their own linguistic, social and cultural practices and identities through a series of theatre workshops. The project aims to build and develop students’ intercultural capabilities, communication and leadership skills to enable them to become cultural ambassadors within the school and wider community.

The project is specifically designed for 2 separate focus groups:

  • focus group for project A: Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students
  • focus group for project B: Muslim girls

This project is provided by ActNow Theatre.

Find out more about ActNow Theatre.

Schools selected to be involved in the Young Cultural Leaders program include:

  • Paralowie R-12 School

My Journey

Project provider: Elyas Alavi

The My Journey project is designed for students to actively participate in and reflect upon linguistic and cultural diversity, whist considering their own linguistic and cultural practices and identities through a series of visual art and poetry workshops. The workshops will be help with award winning visual artist and poet Elyas Alavi.

Students will explore art making techniques across a range of cultures; participate in storytelling, share their own languages, cultures and stories with one another; and express themselves creatively through visual art, poetry writing and performance.

The project links to the curriculum areas of visual art, science, English and history.

Find out more about Elyas at his website and on his instagram.

Schools selected to be involved with the My Journey project include:

  • Norwood-Morialta High School
  • Elizabeth Vale Primary School
  • Elizabeth Grove Primary School

My Kitchen - James Parker

The My Kitchen project encourages preschool and junior primary students to investigate cultural differences and similarities using food as a metaphor.

Students investigate who does the work in their family kitchen, and will learn about the kitchen’s place in different communities and cultures. Students will develop visual art representations of their family kitchens and pantries.

The project is led by South Australian artist James Parker. You can find out more about James on his website or facebook page

This project was first offered in 2017, however due to the success of the project and the extent of interest from schools, the project has been extended to include the following schools:

  • Christ the King Catholic School
  • Flinders View Primary School
  • Marion Primary School
  • Playford College

In 2017 the My Kitchen project had the following schools participate:

  • Campbelltown Preschool
  • Klemzig Primary School
  • Para Vista P-7 School
  • St Bernadette’s School


An iBook was developed as an artefact from the project.

The iBook is narrated by two students from Klemzig Primary School and captures workshop activities, galleries of portraits, food and cooking utensils, games, investigation questions and reflections by students involved.

The iBook is available from the Itunes store and can be downloaded free of charge.

Youth Music Identity Profiles

Project Provider - Dr Daniela Kaleva

The Youth Music Identity Profiles project aims to increase cultural awareness and support positive identity building for secondary students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Students explored their most memorable encounters with music and how music best expresses their individuality. They will use digital technology to develop an individual music identity profile.

The project is led by Dr Daniela Kaleva and sound artist Philip Rene van Hout. 

Due to the success of the project and the extent of interest from schools, the project has been extended to include the following schools:

  • Tenison Woods College jointly with North Gambier School
  • Playford International College

In 2017 the Youth Music Identity Profiles project had the following schools participate:

  • Woodville High School
  • Paralowie R-12 School.

Celebration and exhibition

Each year there is a celebration of the MELC supported projects to publicly acknowledge the culmination and success of the projects.

2017 Celebration

An Exhibition of Innovative School Based projects –My Kitchen and Youth Identity Music Profiles was held on from Tuesday 25 July 2017 until 10 August 2017 at the Department for Education Gallery, Flinders Street, Adelaide. The Exhibition was part of the annual South Australian Living Artists (SALA) Festival.

Each participating school in the two projects contributed to the interactive exhibition which included digital, drawings, installations of dioramas, multimedia, sound and video mediums. Colourful posters provided information about the two projects. The Exhibition was curated by the two project providers.

Previous projects

The Exquisite I

Project provider: SA Writers Centre

The Exquisite I, run by the SA Writers Centre, was a collaborative project where young people from diverse backgrounds engaged with and reflected on how they constructed their identity.

The participants illustrated and narrated their experiences through story and the written word, capturing a diverse range of languages and literacies and culminated with the production of a professionally produced anthology.

The Exquisite I teaching resource (PDF 122KB) is a guide to help educators who would like to run the project themselves.

Cultural and linguistic diversity: youth stories project

Project provider: Dr Rosie Roberts and Larrissa Pick Pickalla

This experiential project run by Rosie Roberts of the University of South Australia worked with one urban and one rural secondary school through a series of workshops. They developed young people’s autobiographical stories that represented everyday experiences of linguistic and cultural difference in contemporary Australia.

The youth stories project teaching resource (PDF 968KB) is a guide to running the program, as well as background and pedagogical information.


MELC Secretariat

Phone: 8226 1191
Email: education.mecs [at] sa.gov.au