One of my goals for this year is to learn some basic te reo Māori and incorporate it into my professional practice and general day-to-day life.

I had the privilege earlier this year to work through the Te Reo Puāwai Māori Empower course offered by CORE Education. It is run online for 10 weeks with a kanohi ki te kanohi (face to face) day at the beginning and end of the course.

The three goals of the course are:

  1. How to pronounce Te Reo Māori
  2. Teaching and learning strategies to use in your practice
  3. How to use technology to support your Te Reo Māori programme.

One of the great features of the course is the facilitation by Gemma Stewart (@gemsteww). Learning a language is a challenge for many of us and Gemma took us through at a good pace, supporting us all in a non-judgemental and very patient way. Thanks Gemma!

Some of the things that we learnt or were supported with:

  • development of our pepeha
  • commands and phrases to use in the classroom
  • phrases to use in facilitation
  • karakia to open/close a day or meeting
  • the structure of some basic phrases (in order to swap out appropriate words)

I learnt a lot more than I can remember but have a stack of notes that I regularly refer back to and so am continuing to learn. I'm more confident in my pronunciation but I still have to push myself to both listen carefully to understand, and to use te reo in my professional work as well as at home. This is why I have purposefully chosen to introduce some Māori kupu (words) into this new blog site.

social media kupu

One online tool that is now in regular use by me is the Māori Dictionary. This is a fantastic resource which not only gives the translation of words but some clear examples of their usage. There is also an excellent app which is linked from the site.

The next step that I need to take is to choose one word/phrase each week that I can incorporate into my work/life. I have to keep pushing myself to use what I have learnt and make it a part of my normal day-to-day activity.

I would highly recommend the Te Reo Puāwai Māori course!