This article was written in collaboration with Te Hiku Media.
School kids in Te Hiku o Te Ika are set to have their teachers, administrators, coaches and grounds staff confidently using te reo Māori and tikanga Māori with the launch of a new wānanga-based initiative.
Following successful pilot programs around the country, ‘Te Hiku Okoro’ is part of the nationwide roll out of Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori, a NZD$108 million initiative funded by the Ministry of Education.
“The idea was around the question: How was … the Ministry of Education going to support the Government’s want and need to ensure that te reo Māori was incorporated into schools,” said Nellie-Ann Abraham, a Muriwhenua woman and Managing Director of education and cultural competency business Takapaukura.
“Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori is really about providing opportunities … to be able to participate and upskill … around te reo Māori, and building confidence but at the same time building competence.”
It also supports the dreams of Te Hiku kaumātua (Elders) who hoped that the next generation would hear, learn and speak te reo o te kāinga (language of home).
Okoro is the local word for maramataka or Māori lunar calendar, hinting at the localised learning participants can expect during their wānanga (seminar).
Based on a te reo Māori competency framework, Ngā Taumata o Te Ahu o te Reo Māori, learning focuses on:
- The use of local dialect
- Practice of reo (language) use for a classroom setting
- Grammar and writing conventions
- Curriculum development
- Language planning for the classroom.
To express an interest in the program, visit: https://www.tehikuokoro.co.nz/.