Sunday, August 9, 2009

Museum Trips

28th & 30th July
Our trips to the Nelson Provincial Museum to participate in a programme that celebrated Maori language and culture could not have been timed better as they took place during Maori Language Week, Te Wiki o te Reo Maori. For some children it may have been a first time visit to the museum and how special it was to be invited in by the powerful karanga from the educators on site at the museum. Lynne and I took our groups on the Tuesday and it was Cindy who welcomed us with a very powerful and emotive karanga. The children were very respectful of this formality and observed the necessary protocol that was explained to them prior to entering the lower level of the museum. Once in there they heard Cindy's mihi and a waiata, again a new experience for many, both children and some of our parents present. It seemed appropriate towards the end of our visit to be able to reciprocate and show our appreciation by singing our own waiata to Cindy. During the course of the session we learnt about the structure of the whare and the significance of this to Maori culture, we listened to two legends that Cindy related so very well, learnt some waiata and then made a little wheke, octopus, from pipe cleaners. Teachers all thought that this visit was a wonderful experience for children and adults alike and we have since received some great feedback from some of the parents that went on this excursion. And the significant learning for children has been very evident in their recall of the legends and some of their play.

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