Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Te Tiriti o Waitangi

First of all I want to give props to my buddy class teacher Sonita who sent us these notes of the day.  It was a massive day and I really enjoyed it.  Sonita, you have given an excellent summary of the day so thank you.

I think I was asked in all of my teaching interviews about the Treaty of Waitangi and what it means to me as a teacher?  Are there other job positions where you have to have some knowledge of the Treaty and apply the underlying principals?  Crazy really.

How it all unfolded was intriguing.  And it makes me want to inquire more into the rich history this country has.  Particularly the musket and land wars.

Another fascinating aspect that Vicky bought up was the 'urban marae' where new people living in a place are setting up their own marae for their community; in NZ and in Australia.  The argument is that that place is not the place of the olden days or the place of the hapu/iwi pre- 1800 so it's a bit controversial.  But, if people who choose to live that way want to, should have the right to, don't you think?  What's the deal with the Teachers' College marae?

My heart was wrenched out to hear that the Treaty was ignored for 100 years.  Shit man, 100 years.  It's embarrassing.

As New Zealander's how unique is our Maori language?  I remember singing Tu tira mai nga iwi in a bus in London, and hijacking a busker in Chicago to sing Hei konei ra, and rolling down the street in Guatemala performing the haka.  I am very proud of our language and culture; it defines us.

So what does it mean for me?

Turangawaewae: the place where your whanau stood, the place where you stand, your place to be: it's our story and we are all connected to this.


James @ Russell Street School said...

Thanks for sharing your reflections Nic. I got the NZ land war dvd out from National Library one holiday. It was awesome and really gave me an insight into some of those historical grievances. James Bellich is the Narator.

Nic Mason said...

Oh nice, will have to do that!

David Reardon (Principal, Russell Street School) said...

Couple of questions -How is the teaching in your class (and our school) effective for Maori learners? How do the learning contexts (and systems) in our school acknowledge local environment, culture, tikanga and roe? What more can we do to accelerate progress in these areas?

Nic Mason said...

The teaching in my class is effective for Maori learners because I operate a kotahitanga approach to learning and systems. We are stronger and in fact learn better when we are all working together toward a common goal. Also I acknowledge tikanga and reo through daily waiata and conversations. The reading resources recently are excellent because they have learning contexts through a Maori lens, which accelerates all learners but particularly Maori.

I think Rosie and I are developing a strong Maori culture with our kapahaka and whanau Roopu. Maori leaders are nurtured, supported and encouraged to lead. We are experiencing success with Maori learners at Kapahaka and in the classroom.

So I think we should keep developing our kapahaka group and making sure staff are encouraged and supported to use te reo and tikanga in daily routines.