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Cross-curricular — English

Photograph showing the underside of a silver fern.
Poems are a powerful way to explore themes related to cultural interaction, identity, and names. Use these poems and teacher notes in the social studies classroom or as part of the English curriculum.

'The shame of Tāneroa', Marewa Glover

Jack is a young Māori boy of seven.
He lives in the child cancer unit in Hamilton.
He’s a happy child despite his condition
‘cause his mother full of aroha
visits him often ...

A powerful poem about the importance of names.

Download 'The shame of Tāneroa' with teacher notes (pdf, 126KB)

'Our tūpuna remain', by Jacq Carter

Nothing like a lone-standing nikau
In the middle of some paddock
Owned by some Pākehā
To make you feel mamae ...

This poem gives voice to both the pain and resilience of a people who have observed and experienced dramatic changes as a result of cultural interaction.

Download 'Our tūpuna remain' with student activities (pdf, 150KB)

'Our watch now', by Witi Ihimaera

If New Zealand had been Aotearoa
            just imagine ...
The Treaty would have been honoured in 1840 ...

Consider what Aotearoa might have been and what it could become, as well as the role students might play in this unfolding story.

Download 'Our watch now' with teacher notes (pdf, 182KB)