He Tohu: a new exhibition exploring stories of our nation

He Tohu: a new exhibition exploring stories of our nationHe Tohu — A declaration. A treaty. A petition. He Tohu has many meanings. All rights reserved

In Term 2 2017, He Tohu opens at the National Library of New Zealand in Wellington. This exciting new permanent exhibition features 3 of the documents that have shaped our nation:

  • 1835 He Whakaputanga o te Rangatiratanga o Nu Tireni — Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of New Zealand 
  • 1840 Te Tiriti o Waitangi — Treaty of Waitangi 
  • 1893 Women’s Suffrage Petition — Te Petihana Whakamana Pōti Wahine. 

National Librarian, Bill Macnaught, who is responsible for the National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa and its Services to Schools programme, says He Tohu is being created “with young people in mind”. The target audience of the exhibition is 10 to 15-year-olds.

“The exhibition will tell the stories of the documents, explain their significance, and encourage debate about how they will influence our future as a people and a nation. Our hope is that all young New Zealanders will be able to visit this exhibition at least once during their school years.”

National Librarian, Bill Macnaught

He Tohu learning resources 

Learning specialists at Services to Schools are guiding the development of Māori- and English-medium learning resources. 

The resources will support teachers and students to explore contemporary issues related to themes underpinning the 3 documents in the exhibition, for example, tino rangatiratanga, justice, democracy, and equality. 

These resources will be available online in 2017.

Book your visit now!

School groups visiting the exhibition will have access to educator-led learning programmes. These programmes will align with Social Sciences achievement objectives  in The New Zealand Curriculum. 

For example, students will be able to explore different responses to Te Tiriti o Waitangi over time or explore ways that ordinary people can influence people in power. There will also be an option of a more general introduction to the 3 documents, focusing on the contexts in which they were created and signed and their significance to us today.

For more information or to book a visit to He Tohu, contact Kate Potter at National Library: kate.potter@dia.govt.nz

By Jo Buchan

Jo is the Senior Specialist (Developing Readers) for Services to Schools.

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