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DreamBIG Children's Festival – when, where, activities and resources

The DreamBIG Children's Festival is an iconic arts festival for children and young people held every 2 years in South Australia.

The festival was originally known as Come Out Children's Festival, and started in 1974. Since then it's become an important part of South Australia's preschool and school calendar.

The festival includes:

  • a poster competition, where the winning entry is used in festival materials
  • an opening event involving around 2,000 children
  • performances
  • workshops
  • statewide projects
  • activities
  • film
  • exhibitions
  • storytelling experiences
  • teacher professional learning opportunities.

The festival has:

  • a schools program, where students take part in events and performances through their school
  • a general public program for families.

2023 DreamBIG poster competition 

Entries close Friday 13 May 2022 for 2023 festival poster competition

Entries are now open for all reception to year 12 students to participate in the DreamBIG Children’s Festival Poster Competition. 

The winning entrant will receive the opportunity to observe a professional designer create the final poster image, as well as a $500 gift voucher.

Does your school have keen visual artists?

You could use the DreamBIG Children’s Festival 2023 poster competition towards teaching and learning in the Australian Curriculum: The Arts and/or across other learning areas of the curriculum during term 1 and early term 2, 2022.

The winning entrant will have their artwork professionally incorporated into a poster for the DreamBIG Children’s Festival 2023. 

Entries are to be created during term 1 and early term 2, 2022 and must be submitted by 4pm Friday 13 May (term 2, week 2). 

To enter, review the competition information (PDF 172KB), download a consent form (PDF 154KB) and visit the DreamBIG website

When and where

The next festival will be held 17 to 29 May 2023. The festival ties in with the UNESCO International Arts Education Week, which is 22 to 28 May 2023.

Events will be held all around the state, including at the Adelaide Festival Centre, Elder Park and throughout Adelaide. 

In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, the program and schedule may be altered in response to the advice of the Chief Medical Officer.

DreamBIG teaching and learning resource

A teaching and learning resource is produced by the Department for Education to support each DreamBIG Children’s Festival. Each resource is deliberately designed to be used any time of year and not only alongside the festival. 

Using a learning design approach, resources are aligned with the arts section of the Australian Curriculum, the general capabilities including literacy and numeracy, and the artistic program of the festival. They contain many learning experiences, all based on each festival’s theme.

Each resource (and the school’s program) becomes available towards the end of term 3 in the year before the festival year, eg around September 2022.

DreamBIG teacher workshops

As part of the DreamBIG Children’s Festival, the department offers a range of practical workshops across metropolitan and regional centres in the few months prior to each festival. 

For notification of the workshop program, register your details (name, school and contact details) to education.DreamBIG [at] sa.gov.au

DreamBIG statewide projects

As part of each festival, a range of statewide activities will be on offer.

For notification of the statewide program register your details (name, school and contact details) to education.DreamBIG [at] sa.gov.au.

Consent forms

Any student materials submitted must be accompanied with the necessary consent form:

Become an arts ambassador

Arts ambassadors are educators in schools and preschools in South Australia who are interested in or are teaching the arts.

They receive email news with up-to-date information about DreamBIG, teacher professional learning, events, and the arts section of the Australian Curriculum.

Registration is free.

To register, email your name, school and contact details to education.DreamBIG [at] sa.gov.au.

DreamBIG Children's Festival

Phone: 8463 5994
Emaileducation.DreamBIG [at] sa.gov.au