The Honey Ant Readers (HAR) is an exciting literacy program that Indigenous learners can relate to and succeed with.
It is the first ever early reading program in Australia to be developed in collaboration with, and at the request of, Indigenous elders and community and written specifically for speakers of Aboriginal English. It is underpinned by sound pedagogy and second language acquisition theory and supported by songs and rhymes which teach Standard Australian English.
Honey Ant Reader 13, 'Gotta get the Baby' is the nerve wracking recount of Trudy Inkamala's community held story, as told to the author in 2009.
Three women go looking for bush tucker, one taking her baby along. A 'boogie' woman sneaks up to the baby when the women are focussed on digging for honey ants and takes it away. A few anxious pages later the baby is reunited with its mother.
One song at the end of the book, 'Find the Baby', serves as a rhyming musical recount of the story and the other, 'What am I?' teaches Standard English 'bush' vocabulary through the reply 'I'm…' There are 204 words being used in this book, and 6 activities at the back of the book to reinforce the learning.