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Unit plans

He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora explores eight learning contexts:

  • Ko au (I, me, myself)
  • Taku akomanga (My classroom)
  • Kai (Food)
  • Te huarere (The weather)
  • Hauora (Health)
  • Ngā tau (Numbers)
  • Ngā hākari (Celebrations)
  • Te marae (The marae).

These may also be referred to as “topics” or “units”. You don’t need to cover them in a particular order.

Unit plan overview

Each unit plan is set out as follows:

  • tikanga
  • achievement objectives
  • learning intentions and success criteria
  • tasks and activities
  • assessment opportunities
  • vocabulary
  • resources and references
  • related topics.


This section begins with a whakataukī. It suggests aspects of Māori culture, relevant to the unit, to explore with your students.

Remember that a principle in The New Zealand Curriculum is respect for cultural diversity and the identity of every student. Learning about aspects of a culture is different from adopting a cultural practice or religious belief.

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Achievement objectives

The achievement objectives are those in Te Aho Arataki:

  • For level 1, see page 42 in Te Aho Arataki.
  • For level 2, see page 43 in Te Aho Arataki.
  • For level 3, see page 46 in Te Aho Arataki.
  • For level 4, see page 47 in Te Aho Arataki.

He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora covers the level 1–4 achievement objectives in Te Aho Arataki.

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Learning intentions and success criteria

In each unit, the learning intentions and success criteria are presented in the form of components you will need to make an assessment rubric. The learning intentions are not in any particular order. They are offered only as suggestions. You will often want to adapt a learning intention from one unit to use in another. Use the rubric components in the units to create age-appropriate ones to use with your class. Work with your students to:

  • select learning intentions to focus on
  • develop success criteria to meet their specific learning needs.

This will help to ensure that they know what is expected of them and what success will look like. It will enable them to monitor their own progress and make the most of the feedback that you and their peers give them. It will enable them to work out what their next learning steps should be, in consultation with you.

The learning intentions provide opportunities to explore the six modes of language identified on page 24 in Te Aho Arataki:

  • whakarongo (listening)
  • kōrero (speaking)
  • pānui (reading)
  • tuhituhi (writing)
  • mātakitaki (viewing)
  • whakaatu (presenting).

At curriculum levels 1 and 2, put more emphasis on whakarongo and kōrero and, where appropriate, mātakitaki and whakaatu.

To obtain useful information on your students’ learning of te reo Māori, gather and analyse evidence regularly. Though much of this will be of the moment, a rubric will help you. There is provision to record three occasions of self-assessment, three of peer assessment, and three of your assessment. In some cases, you may decide to create assessment rubrics that contain more.

You might like to use the following as a template. You can download it from the online pātaka.

Instead of smiley faces, you could use traffic lights, but see what your students suggest.

Learning intentions for extension

Extension. There are additional ideas in each unit for extension learning. Use these suggestions when you are working with students who are capable of achieving at curriculum levels 3 and 4. These are not exhaustive lists. Work with your students to determine the actual learning intentions that will extend their learning. They will contribute their own ideas. Work with them to develop appropriate success criteria.

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Assessment opportunities

This section illustrates how you and your students can use tasks and activities to assess learning, informally and formally.

To improve student learning in te reo Māori, assessment is best seen as an ongoing process that arises out of the relationship between teaching and learning – where the gathering and analysis of evidence, much of it of the moment, provides useful information on your students’ acquisition of te reo Māori. Through the gathering of such evidence, you will gain insights that will shape your practice, and your students will gain insights that will shape their learning.

Internet. In the Māori language curriculum guidelines, Te Aho Arataki, there are suggestions for possible learning and assessment activities at curriculum levels 1–2, curriculum levels 3–4, and information about monitoring achievement. Internet. In addition, there is helpful material collected online in Te Whakaipurangi Rauemi. This collection elaborates on some of the communicative tasks provided in each unit plan.

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Tasks and activities

The second-language tasks and activities in the units are at varying levels of difficulty, in order to give you the flexibility you will need to meet the diverse needs of your students. They can be done individually, in pairs, or in groups.

Alongside the examples of te reo Māori, English translations are provided. They are not always literal translations.

Having the translations does not mean that you should necessarily say the English to your students. It will depend on the task or activity – and your students' needs.

To reduce the chance of a communication breakdown during the tasks and activities, pre-teach phrases such as the following:

Anō. Say (it) again.
Ehē. That’s not right.
Āta kōrero. Can you speak more slowly/clearly (please).
He aha te kupu Māori mō ...? What’s the Māori word for ...?
Aua. (I) don't know.
He aha? What?
Kei te mārama? Understood?

During the tasks and activities, keep using classroom expressions, such as:

E tū! Stand up!
E noho! Sit down!
Taringa whakarongo! Listen!
Kia tere! Hurry up!
Kaua e ...! Don’t ...!
Taihoa! Wait!
Kia tau. Settle down. Be still.
Me whakarongo koutou. Listen up. (to three or more people)
Anei. Here.
Kia ora. Thank you.
Ka pai. That’s good.

You will find additional expressions to use in your classroom by clicking here.

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This section provides vocabulary you might need during the unit. Look for opportunities to incorporate this vocabulary into other units too – to consolidate.

Resources and references

This section identifies resources you could use during a unit, including waiata and stories – as well as reference material.

Related topics

This section suggests opportunities for incorporating elements of a unit into other learning areas.

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