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Rotokawa School

Region: Bay of Plenty/Waiariki

Art form: Ngā Toi Māori

Project name: Rotokawa Hononga (Collaborative Mural across the school)

Creative name: Stu McDonald – Moana Moko Creative Natives Ltd

Project information: Rotokawa School is deeply connected and committed to supporting our tamariki/students in building their sense of belonging. Here at Rotokawa School, this is done through a bi-annual curriculum which encompasses key themes that are brought to life through the local pūrākau (stories from the realm of the atua/gods), pakiwaitara (stories from the realm of man, including whakapapa and tīpuna rongonui), and pepeha (including the physical landmarks around us here at Rotokawa School). As a school, we sit in a privileged position to be closely connected to our local iwi/hapū, which enables engagement and the sharing of their experiences and stories about growing up in the area, but also schooling through Rotokawa. 

The artforms that we will use to depict the stories above will include kōwhaiwhai and whakairo, which will translate the stories. Alongside our creative, the intention is that our students, both tuakana and teina, will co-design the mural. This will include their goals and aspirations for the art piece and their perceptions of their connections to the whenua, Rotokawa area, and the ūara (values) of the school. This knowledge will be integral points of reference throughout the entire teaching and learning process. 

We will use the tuakana/teina model, where younger learners are supported and guided through the expertise of older learners, including all age groups and mixes within our community (students, whānau, staff, community members). We know a mural can be an extension of the classroom learning environment and can be created collaboratively. This mural will also visually transform Rotokawa School in a way that reflects our kaupapa, Te Ao Māori, and the central values, principles, and pedagogy of the ākonga, staff, whānau, iwi/hapū, and wider community.

Project starting: March 2022

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