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Source: Eastern Institute of Technology – Tairāwhiti

14 mins ago

A Tairāwhiti Te Reo Maori learning umbrella is behind many firsts.

Later this year 24 EIT Tairāwhiti Te Whatukura tauira (students) and kaiako (teachers) will set off on a cultural exchange stepping onto the islands of Hawaii  – a first for them all. 

It is also the first time EIT Te Whatukura have offered an overseas cultural trip.

But it is not a first for Te Whatukura tutor Jojo Rangihaeata, who has had the experience of taking groups overseas such as Japan and Hawaii in her previous work. 

“This is not foreign ground to me so I thought I would give the opportunity to these EIT students. It will be an experience of a life time to be able to share their language and culture with our Hawaiian relatives.”

She says the purpose is to expose tauira to other forms of indigenous learnings through language acquisition and cultural enhancement.” 

They will see the  similarities to the Maori language and culture with the Hawaiian people. 

“We will visit educational institutes such as immersion schools, charter schools, University of Hawaii, Community Colleges, cultural events go share our language and culture. 

“The students will come away with rich fulfilment of the diverse ways in how indigenous languages are being recognised within the Pacific, says Jojo.

The 24 students are now busy fundraising to pay for the trip which is happening in April this year. 

As well as personal contributions, the tauira are fundraising to cover the costs of the trip. 

Enrolments are being taken now for this years’ Te Reo Maori courses at EIT Tairāwhiti.

Te Reo Maori level two to level four are offered and as part of learning the language, tauira learn waiata (songs), pohiri (welcome ceremony ritual), korero tuku iho (myths and legends), whakatauki (proverbs) and kiwaha (colloquialism).

A unique difference of the EIT Te Reo Maori programmes is that the Tairāwhiti dialect is taught, and includes waiata of this district. 

To find out more information and enrol for courses at either Ruatoria or in Gisborne, go to EIT Tairāwhiti website or call into the main office in Palmerston Road.