Monday, June 4, 2012

Maori Language Teaching Resources

Maranga Mai! by Sharon Holt, illustrated by Deborah Hinde (published by Edumaxi Ltd)

He aha te tangi a te kau?
He aha te tangi a te hau?
Mu, mu, mu ... mu, mu, mu. Te tangi a te kau.

What does the cow say?
What does the cow say?
Moo, moo, moo ... moo, moo, moo. That's what the cow says.

The second book in the series:

Kei to Peke Ahau, by Sharon Holt, illustrated by Deborah Hinde (published by Edumaxi Ltd)

Kei te peke ahau, kei te peke ahau.
Peke, peke, peke.
Kei te peke ahu, kei to peke ahau.
Peke, peke, peke.
Ano nei he rapeti.

I am jumping, I am jumping.
Jump, jump, jump.
I am jumping, I am jumping.
Jump, jump, jump.
Like a rabbit.

Children can sing along with the CDs (sung by Stacy Walker and Graeme Stewart) in each book while looking at the pictures and and reading the Maori words to a song. In the first book it is about what the farm animals say. In the second book it is actions children perform that resemble animal movements.  The Maori version is illustrated with pictures and at the back of the book on page 22 is a loosely translated English version. On the left are pictures with Maori verbs and nouns to help children learn those Maori words. On page 23 are guitar chords and on the last page are ideas to use the book/song in the classroom. 

The pictures in both books are bright and colourful and are spread across the double page spread.  I would like to have seen more Maori children in the book, as all the children are European except for one boy who has European features and tanned skin.

The blurb on the book says that Te reo singalong books can help you and your children learn te reo Maori the easy way.  There is a real need for resources that teach Maori language and these two books make it fun and educational.  Junior and Middle school teachers will find these books very handy. I hope there are more...

Reviewed by Maria Gill

1 comment:

Word Imp said...

Thanks for your review Maria. Yes, there are definitely more books coming. Book 3 is due out in August and I plan to have a new book in the series released at least every six months. The uptake by early childhood centres and schools that I approach is always very high and teachers and children are loving them. It was a deliberate choice not to have lots of Maori faces in the books. One Maori boy and one Asian girl were deliberate. My reasoning was that I wanted the books to be "owned" by all the children of New Zealand, who see Maori faces in their picture books all the time. I thought it would be nice for them to see non-Maori children enjoying Maori stories. Interestingly, the kura kaupapa and kohanga reo children who have these books are very happy with the children in the books too. However, point taken and I will make sure that the ratio is a bit higher in book 3. Thanks again. Sharon.