Thursday, June 16, 2016

Matariki - what do you know about this time of year?

Kua puta Matariki ka rere Whānui.

Ko te tohu tēnā o te tau e!

I have been thrilled to have my babies come home from their school this week excitedly talking about Matariki.  They are proud to tell me they "know lot's about Matariki" and we have been getting up early to go outside to try and find ngā whetu o Matariki (the Matariki stars).

Matariki is the Māori name for a group of stars known as the Pleiades star cluster. Contrary to popular belief, there are nine stars in the Matariki constellation instead of seven. The Māori New Year is marked by the rise of this star cluster and the sighting of the next new moon. This year, 2016, Matariki started on 6 June.

There are some amazing resources out there to support teachers sharing the kōrero and importance of Matariki. Firstly, try to connect to your local Māori community to find out if there are any events or local tikanga or history you should know about Matariki (like this awesome Matariki celebration happening locally where I live).

All teachers should check out this webpage on New Zealand Curriculum Online too which has an abundance of great links to YouTube clips and supporting websites and resources: 

And if none of that helps you learn about the Matariki story, here is one of my daughters telling you what she has learned about Matariki so far...DISCLAIMER: please don't take it as gospel but rather a super cute version of a 5 year old from Aotearoa trying to summarise all the cool new things they have learned about Matariki this week!  :)

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