He Uri Whakaheke

Issue: Volume 101, Number 5

Posted: 27 April 2022
Reference #: 1HATpe

He Tamaiti Hei Raukura recognises ākonga as ‘he uri whakaheke’ (as a descendant), ‘he tangata’ (as a person), ‘he puna kōrero’ (as a communicator), and ‘he ākonga’ (as a learner). This article explores what He Uri Whakaheke can look like within Te Takanga o Te Wā and how it can contribute to the overall outcomes of He Tamaiti Hei Raukura.

He Tamaiti Hei Raukura recognises ākonga as being Puna Reo (competent communicators), Uri Whakaheke (grounded in their identity), Tangata (confident contributors) and Ākonga (skilled learners).

He Tamaiti Hei Raukura recognises ākonga as being Puna Reo (competent communicators), Uri Whakaheke (grounded in their identity), Tangata (confident contributors) and Ākonga (skilled learners).

Our vision is to ensure we meet the expectations and aspirations of whānau, hapū and iwi for their children. Our desire is that our mokopuna know who they are, that we value and protect who they are as Māori and that they lead positive, successful lives that contribute to a global and Māori world,” says Hineihaea Murphy, member of Te Rōpū Whāiti, the advisory group for the redesign of Te Marautanga o Aotearoa.

This outcome for ākonga of reo Māori education is the aim of He Tamaiti Hei Raukura, the foundation paper for the redesign of Te Marautanga o Aoteaora

“This means developing the skills, attributes, knowledge and dispositions that will position ākonga positively and successfully for their future, but which also recognise that our learners today will become the leaders, parents, and ancestors of tomorrow. They are a part of a longer story,” says Hineihaea.

He Tamaiti Hei Raukura describes ākonga as being Puna Reo (competent communicators), Uri Whakaheke (grounded in their identity), Tangata (confident contributors) and Ākonga (skilled learners). The vision is to have a curriculum that enables teaching and learning programmes to be focused, in an authentic way, on achieving these outcomes.

Hineihaea Murphy

Hineihaea Murphy

Hineihaea says the obvious link is to the outcome of He Uri Whakaheke which outlines the vision for ākonga who understand who they are, and where they are from – but that in reality, Te Takanga o Te Wā contributes to each of the He Tamaiti Hei Raukura outcomes. “Their identity – nō wai rātou, nō tēhea iwi, nō tēhea whenua, nō tēhea kāwai whakapapa – and the stories, connections, and mātauranga that go with understanding who they are, and how we have come to be who we are.”  

He Uri Whakaheke acknowledges that identity, and the mātauranga that goes with that, is important for being a contributor in the whānau, hapū and iwi, but also as the foundation for being successful, resilient, and innovative as Māori in the future, says Hineihaea.

He Uri Whakaheke in action at Te Wharekura o Mauao

“He Tamaiti Hei Raukura places our ākonga at the centre of their teaching and learning programmes,” says Jo Cameron, Tumuaki Tuarua – Tumu Ako (Deputy Principal – Leader of Learning) at Te Wharekura o Mauao in Tauranga Moana.

“Ākonga thrive in kura ā-iwi such as ours where their whakapapa, whānau, kōrero tuku iho and values are esteemed by their kaiako and the marau ā-kura. Te Takanga o Te Wā contributes to this ākonga-centred approach by intentionally teaching the histories of Aotearoa New Zealand to all ākonga. The stories and whakapapa of our ākonga and their communities are valued and shared.

Former students of Te Wharekura o Mauao.

Former students of Te Wharekura o Mauao.

“An Uri Whakaheke is a tamaiti or rangatahi who understands that they are eternally connected with their tīpuna who have gone before them. They recognise the importance of mātauranga handed down through the generations and have a strong sense of cultural identity and connection to their people and place.”

Jo is spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing an example of how He Uri Whakaheke is integrated into their teaching and learning programme.

“One that comes to mind was marking the 150th anniversary of the final armed conflict in Tauranga Moana in 1867, where the Crown sought to enforce land confiscation and clear local iwi from their whenua. The memories of the iwi of this scorched earth campaign, named Te Weranga, are deeply painful and knowing about this final armed conflict is important to understanding ongoing dislocation and the impacts of colonisation in Tauranga,” says Jo.

“Te Wharekura o Mauao partnered with local marae, hapū and iwi to plan and put on commemorations of Te Weranga, with our students learning the history of what happened, researching archival materials, interviewing kaumātua, composing haka and planning the event.
We had wānanga with other local kura and stayed on the whenua where one of the final attacks took place, walking up the Kaimai Track that was used by the ancestors to escape to safety. 

“We attended the dawn ceremonies held by each hapū who held commemorations of their own date, and erected carved pou. Our tauira prepared kai for the hakari, cleaned the marae and participated in the haka pōhiri and ceremonies on the day of the event at Whakamarama that our kura was responsible for helping organise.”

Four hundred people attended, including 200 Pākehā community members from the Whakamarama rural area who learned what had happened on their whenua 150 years ago. 

“Our tauira were active participants in researching and retelling those stories. They then wrote essays, performed speeches and kapa haka that told the history of Te Weranga for NCEA assessment.”

In another example, Jo shares how ākonga marked whakapono Māori in 2018, which was a year of spiritual significance: ‘He tau wairua te tau – The year is a spiritual year’. It encompassed the 160th anniversary of the coronation of the first Māori king, Potatau Te Wherowhero, whose people converted to the Pai Mārire faith and follow to this day; the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Ringatū faith by the prophet Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Turuki; and the centennial year of the establishment of the Rātana faith by Tahupōtiki Wiremu Rātana in November 1918.

“All of these three whakapono Māori helped our local iwi in Tauranga Moana in the darkest days of the land wars, land confiscation, death by disease, the poverty of post-World War I land loss and government policies. All three of these whakapono Māori are followed by different whānau and marae in Tauranga Moana today.

“Our tauira learned about all three whakapono Māori and the historical contexts of their prophetic leaders’ emergence, learned karakia and hīmene from each, held wānanga, and attended commemorative events. They produced a huge range of learning outcomes, across music, history, art, rēhia, te reo Māori, tikanga ā iwi curriculum areas and gained credits for that work. We held an exhibition of their work at the end of the year.

“The outcomes at our Wharekura are many,” reflects Jo. “We have seen a couple of hundred ākonga Māori graduate from our Wharekura since our first cohort of Year 13 ākonga of 2014, emerging as young adults who are fluent in their reo, strong in their culture and sure of their pathway forward. These young adults are already playing important roles in their whānau, marae and communities, as well as gaining tertiary qualifications and meaningful employment. They are proud of being from Tauranga Moana.” 

Tauira at Te Wharekura o Mauao are active participants in retelling the stories, including through kapa haka.

Tauira at Te Wharekura o Mauao are active participants in retelling the stories, including through kapa haka.

BY Education Gazette editors
Education Gazette | Tukutuku Kōrero, reporter@edgazette.govt.nz

Posted: 1:37 PM, 27 April 2022

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