SBS Learn is celebrating Diwali in classrooms with a ready-to-go resource for teachers across Australia – SBS Learn is celebrating the Festival of Lights for the second year with an exciting creative educational video resource to help share the festivities of Diwali in classrooms.  

Filmed in collaboration with Primary School teacher, Vakula Bhattar, this multilingual ‘Celebrate Diwali’ educational resource is based on creating a kolam /rangoli artwork for the Festival of Lights, an important celebration in the South Asian cultural calendar. The resource includes inclusive practical activities in seven languages – including English – to reflect the cross-cultural connections which define the spirit of Diwali/Deepavali. 

SBS Learn is celebrating Diwali in classrooms with a ready-to-go resource for teachers across Australia
Primary School teacher Vakula Bhattar displaying a rangoli to make in classrooms.

Primary School teacher at Girraween Primary School, Vakula Bhattar, said:

“Diwali is an important time for many Australians and is marked as one of the biggest and most important days of the calendar for many South Asian households. It’s a time of religious rituals, community bonding and a moment to share traditions with the younger generation, with stories that I’m excited to extend to my classroom.”  

“Building on the strength from last year’s resource, I had many people from the community, even those who weren’t teachers, use the resource and feel a sense of pride in our work. I was beyond happy.” 

To connect with more communities and classrooms across Australia, SBS Learn has also translated the step-by-step instructional videos across seven languages – Bangla, Gujarati, Hindi, Malayalam, Nepali, Punjabi and Tamil, as well as captions in English. 

SBS Learn is celebrating Diwali in classrooms with a ready-to-go resource for teachers across Australia
A kolam being drawn on the ground. Source: IStock by Getty Images: Aroybarman

The resource is based around an art activity to create a kolam – meaning beauty in Thamizh (Tamil) which morphs into a rangoli of geometric patterns and curved loops. Guided by Vakula, students learn how to create their own kolam and rangoli whilst also learning key differences between the two. The resource on kolam / rangoli artwork also includes context about how Diwali is celebrated in Australia, and the different rituals people undertake to prepare for the festivities.  

About SBS Learn  

SBS Learn is the educational arm of the wider SBS Outreach Initiative, focusing on creating quality materials for teachers aligned to the Australian Curriculum based on SBS/NITV programs and key cultural celebrations. Resources are designed with the values of diversity, inclusion and connectedness in mind to help prepare young minds for the world beyond school gates, covering all Learning Areas, Cross-curriculum Priorities and General Capabilities tailored to the Australian Curriculum throughout Foundation to Year 12. Visit the SBS Learn here: 

About the Celebrate Diwali resource 

This resource is based around an art activity to create a kolam that will morph into a rangoli which is one of many ways to celebrate Diwali or Deepavali, a cultural celebration in South Asian culture. The activity is guided by Primary School teacher, Vakula Bhattar. Vakula will show your students how to create your own kolam and rangoli. Please note that both these designs hold equal value in sharing the beauty of South Asian cultures. This resource will show you how to create your own kolam and rangoli in the classroom with your students. 

Meet the Author, Vakula Bhattar 

Vakula Bhattar is a Sydney-based primary school teacher who takes pride in her responsibility to shape the young minds of Australia’s future. Outside of her teaching practices, Vakula spends her time playing competitive netball, practises Bharatanatyam and enjoys going for nature walks.   

For further resources for Diwali, see here:  

What is Diwali? | SBS Hindi 

5 Days of Tihar | SBS Nepali 

Content collection | SBS Bangla  

Recipes with Kishwar Chowdhury  

Diwali kids artwork photo compeition | SBS Gujarati  

Draw a lamp competition | SBS Malayalam  

Recipes with Chef Chowdhury | SBS Punjabi  

Diwali without firecrackers | SBS Tamil  

Watch a collection of movies inspired by the themes of the festival on SBS On Demand  

For more information, visit 

Media Release – SBS

TV Central SBS content HERE