Wayapa Wuurrk (Connect to the Earth)

The Wayapa in Education Program supports services to embed practices of holistic wellbeing, connection and inclusion for staff, children and parents/carers.

Program details

  • Priority area: Wellbeing (social and emotional), access and inclusion
  • Primary audience: Educators, parents/carers, children
  • Delivery mode: Group training, online, resources (books, kits, manuals), coaching
  • Strength of evidence: Level 5 Foundational research evidence
  • AEDC sub-domains:
    • Emotional maturity anxious and fearful behaviour
    • Social competence responsibility and respect
  • Item cost: Variable

Program description

Wayapa is an internationally-accredited and trademarked earth connection wellness modality based on Indigenous and ancient peoples' wisdom, from Australia and around the world, that focuses on taking care of the environment as the starting point for wellbeing. Combining earth mindfulness, narrative meditation, physical movement storytelling and earth reciprocity, Wayapa Wuurrk creates holistic wellbeing and sustainable behaviour.

Wayapa Wuurrk translates to “Connect to the Earth” in the languages of the Peek Whuurrung and Gunaikurnai, respectively, and was co-founded in 2014 by Gunaikurnai & Peek Whuurrung Jamie Thomas and his partner Sara Jones, a Welsh Canadian Australian. A First Nations-led organisation with Cultural Elder Patrons, Wayapa aims to reconnect all people back to their reciprocal relationship with the environment as earth stewards.

Wayapa is an inclusive modality inviting everyone to learn how to tap into their own ancestry of earth connection.

There are over 250 certified Wayapa Wuurrk Practitioners, from a range of backgrounds including Australian First Nations. Wayapa has been shared with thousands of people around the world for intergenerational wellbeing.

The Wayapa in Education Program has been specifically designed to increase educator capacity to embed practices of holistic wellbeing, connection and inclusion for all staff, children and families/carers.

The program consists of:

  1. Wayapa Discovery Workshop for Service Leadership Teams: a 75-minute in service or live online Wayapa introductory workshop for leadership teams. Discover how Wayapa fosters wellbeing pathways and aligns with service quality improvement goals.
  2. Wayapa Professional Development Level 1 Workshop for Educators: a 3-hour in service or live online workshop that explores how Wayapa can enrich earth connection and holistic wellbeing for services, educators and children. This workshop will support educators to embed Indigenous perspectives and prioritise wellbeing pathways in preparation for school transition.
  3. Wayapa Introductory Incursion for Children: a 4560 minute in service experiential learning session for children with their educators that uses storytelling to introduce Wayapa in a fun and meaningful way.
  4. Wayapa Incursion Packages for Children: a series of sessions for children that connect to and explore more deeply the Wayapa Elements. Wayapa practitioners provide a range of earth connection experiences that introduce custodial responsibility, rhythm, movement and song, gratitude and environmental action.
  5. Wayapa Action Research & Mentoring Program for Educators: provides guided support across an action research project, including 10 one-hour group mentoring sessions. The program facilitates opportunities to prioritise holistic wellbeing and integrate Indigenous Wisdom into every day learning using Wayapa. Educators will cultivate their learning journey through an action research project that identifies ways to contextually embed Wayapa perspectives and processes across the service.
  6. Wayapa Platinum Program: features the following modules as a means to collectively embed Indigenous ways of knowing and being, holistic wellbeing and environmental sustainability:
    • Wayapa Professional Development Level 1 Workshop for the entire centre
    • Wayapa Incursion Package for Children 9 sessions
    • 10 session Action Research & Mentoring Program for Educators.

It is recommended the Wayapa Introductory Incursion Program for Children is delivered in conjunction with the professional development workshop.

Detailed cost

All professional development components of the program have been designed and priced for in-service or online delivery. Please note that additional costs may apply for engagements where a Practitioner is required to travel for in-service delivery. A quote will be provided if travel and/or accommodation is applicable.

All pricing presented is inclusive of GST.

Wayapa Discovery Workshop for Service Leadership Teams: $825 (including GST) for online delivery for up to 10 team members and $990 (including GST) for in-service delivery for up to 12 team members.

Wayapa Professional Development Level 1 Workshops for Educators: Dedicated team workshops $1,650 (including GST) per workshop for online delivery for up to 6 educators, with follow up reflective resources. $1,980 (including GST) per workshop for in service delivery for up to 8 staff with follow up reflective resources.

For greater flexibility, request a copy of our online open workshop schedule that has pre-set dates, where single participant registrations are available $330 (including GST) per participant for 1 to 5 registrations, $275 (including GST) per participant for 6+ registrations. (Minimum registration numbers apply for any of the pre-set workshop dates to proceed).

Wayapa Introductory Incursion for Children: $605 (including GST) per group for in-service delivery.

Wayapa Incursion Package for Children:

  • $2,200 (including GST) for 4 sessions
  • $3,168 (including GST) for 6 sessions
  • $4,048 (including GST) for 8 sessions.

Each package is priced per room of up to 22 children. Larger groups can be accommodated with the active support of the educator team. Each session needs at least one educator actively participating in the session. For services with large groups, it is important to have additional educators to support the children in maintaining a large learning environment.

Wayapa Action Research & Mentoring Program for Educators:

  • $5,390 (including GST) for 2 educators/staff members
  • additional participants quoted on request.

Price includes an online-self-paced action research project, 10 group mentoring sessions (one hour), and educator online access for 3 months. The Wayapa Professional Development Level 1 workshop is a pre-requisite to this program. Refer to the Wayapa Professional Development Bundle if you have not attended the Level 1 Training.

Wayapa Professional Development Bundle for Educators: $5,775 (including GST). This bundle is for 2 educators and includes the Wayapa Professional Development Level 1 Workshop and 10 session Action Research Mentoring Program.

Wayapa Platinum Program: $11,154 (including GST) priced for online Professional Development delivery and in service children's incursions.

This price includes:

  • Wayapa Professional Development Level 1 Workshop for the entire centre (Live online session)
  • Wayapa Incursion Package for Children - 9 sessions
  • 10-session Action Research and Mentoring Program for 2 educators.

Implementation considerations

  • Target population: educators, educational professionals, and children.
  • Program/practice descriptions and details: the program has been developed as stand-alone modules which can be built upon or purchased as a platinum program.
  • Program adaptability: the program is a blended program that is able to flexibly accommodate aspects of the training in ways that can better meet the service community needs throughout the duration of the program.
  • Staffing: services should account for backfill by considering the time commitments of the program components.
  • Training requirements: no previous Wayapa experience necessary. Wayapa movements can be differentiated.
  • Australian experience: the program can be conducted in both the metropolitan and regional areas across Victoria. Additional costs may be incurred where travel is required.
  • Factors to consider: please understand that we have many different certified Wayapa Wuurrk Practitioners, each with their own cultural background and connection to earth. Not all of our practitioners are of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent.
  • Tools and systems: to access the online components of the program, participants need a computer or smart phone with internet access. A large space and a data projector and screen is required for in-service delivery of the educator/staff member professional development workshop.

VEYLDF alignment

Item uses these practice principles

  • Partnerships with families
  • Reflective practice
  • Equity and diversity
  • Respectful relationships and responsive engagement
  • Assessment for learning and development
  • Partnerships with professionals
  • Integrated teaching and learning approaches.

Item responds to these sub-outcomes

Children become strong in their social, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.

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