Poutokomanawa is the central pole of a wharenui (meeting house). It is the heart of the wharenui, supporting the whole house and connecting earth and sky. It is a piece of art, representing ancestry and story. As a name for our collective, it signifies the aim we have for our mahi: to create a space for creativity, growth and learning that supports the heart of the child.

He Poutokomanawa

Tokona te rangi ki runga

Ko Papa ki raro

Ka tū a Tāne Whakapiripiri

Hei whare wānangananga

Hei whare auahatanga

Hei whare tautoko

i te manawa o te tamaiti

e whai ake nei

i tōna ao mārama.

Toi te kupu,

Toi te mana,

Toi te whenua;

Tēnei a toi e hanga whare nei

Tihe mouri ora!


Poutokomanawa is a bicultural collaboration that supports Māori voice, leadership

and decision making in the growth and development of arts based pedagogy in New

Zealand schools. The work aims to acknowledge and support those working in Māori

immersion settings and to honour the expertise and pedagogical knowledge being

developed in these contexts. Our collective advocates for learning that is grounded in:

creativity, artistry, wellbeing, child-led exploration and play, the natural environment

and local place-based curriculum.

Hā Ora

A Poutokomanawa project for

Te Rito Toi

Hā ora means a breath of life. This resource was created to support child wellbeing as they come back into their school communities after a time of challenge. Hā Ora describes having an essence full of vitality and creative energy that is central to this mahi.

In this resource, Hā Ora, you will find three units of work, which are all connected thematically under the concept of Hā Ora. We encourage you to look through all the offerings presented in the wider ‘Hā Ora’ resource, and use the material in a way that suits your learning context.

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