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Whakapakari Tinana / Keeping Fit

Whakapakari Tinana / Keeping Fit

Storyline / Kiko

This story shows children following a range of instructions in physical education. It has been designed to support a video showing students in an English-medium primary school choreographing exercises using te reo Māori.

Achievement Objectives / Whāinga Paetae

Students should be able to:

  • 1.5 communicate about location
  • 3.3 give and follow directions.

Te Aho Arataki Marau mō te Ako i Te Reo Māori - Kura Auraki

Learning Context / Kaupapa

This story relates to the wider topic of Hauora/Health (Unit 5) in He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora.


He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora

Assessment / Aromatawai

Learning intentions and success criteria have been included in these teachers’ notes (see rubrics below) to help determine student progress.


The format of the rubrics is similar to He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora, allowing for student self-assessment, as well as assessment by:

  • other students (tuākana and tēina)
  • teachers
  • whānau (as a way of engaging families and promoting a partnership between home and school).

The three tohu/ symbols in the rubrics indicate different steps of learning, as depicted in this poutama pattern.

Proverb / Whakataukī

Kia tōtoia ngā waewae o taku mokopuna.

Let the legs of my grandchild be massaged.

Cultural Knowledge / Tikanga 

Traditionally, mothers massaged their baby’s limbs, from birth, to make them more flexible and agile for physical activities. The most common Māori words for ‘massage’ are mirimiri and romiromi.


Kori tinana (physical activity) is one aspect of Māori people’s holistic view of well-being. In traditional times, they participated in games and activities to promote agility, dexterity, and fitness such as tī rākau (stick games), poi (light ball made of raupō leaves), kī-o-rahi (a traditional ball game), waewae rākau (stilts), mau rākau (weaponry), and mahi ringaringa (hand games). These activities built up people’s coordination and stamina in preparation for hunting, gardening, fishing, and warfare.


Pre-Reading / I Mua Atu

Before reading the story, talk with students to discover:

  • their previous experiences in relation to the picture on the front cover
  • their prior knowledge of relevant vocabulary, language structures, and Māori concepts.

Flashcards / Whakaahua

You could create flashcards to show images of the following content words:

oma – running
takahi – stamping
hīkoi – walking/marching
hītoki – hopping
paki – slapping (e.g., thighs)
piu – skipping
pūkana – contorting face
huri – turning around
tū – standing
porowhita – circle
ringaringa – hands/arms
waewae – feet/legs
muri – back
mua – front
mauī – left
matau – right
runga – up
raro – down

Other Words / Ētahi Atu Kupu

Additional words related to physical exercise include:

Haere! – Go!/Move!
E peke! – Jump!
Oma atu! – Run away!
Oma mai! – Run back!
Ngaoki! – Crawl!
Kanikani! – Dance!

Grammar / Wetereo

This story includes the following language structures:

  • causative prefix whaka-, as in whakapakari (to make strong)
  • particle ki, indicating movement towards something
  • particle e, used before commands with two short vowels (E oma. Run.)
  • particle me, used to form a weak command when it precedes a verb (Me pūkana! Do a pūkana!)
  • locatives runga (above), raro (down), muri (back), and mua (front). (Although pairs of locatives are listed here, it is best to introduce one locative at a time and consolidate before introducing another one.)

Follow-Up / I Muri Mai

Second language tasks/activities


Once students are familiar with the text, you can facilitate some of the second language tasks/ activities below, working to your students’ strengths and interests. The aim is to extend their proficiency and use of te reo in meaningful contexts.


While facilitating these tasks/activities, remember that you don’t have to be the expert. As conveyed in the Māori concept of ako, you may be in the position of being a learner alongside your students. In fact, some students may want to take the lead.


Ka pai tēnā. Nō reira, kia kaha.


For general information on common task types, see He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora. Choose ‘Using tasks and activities’.


He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora


Physical response – Ask the children to follow your commands (from the story).

For example:

Ringaringa ki runga! (Hands up!)

Haere ki te taha mauī! (Move to the left!)

Mahia he porowhita. (Form a circle.)


Ako – Play some catchy music (such as Poi e) and have the students stand in a circle. Ask each student to call out one command for their peers to respond to physically. Some students may choose commands not in the actions in the story, for example: e hura (hula), pakipaki (clap), pekepeke (jump), hopehope (swing hips), e huri (turn around), kanikani (dance), e rere (fly), waewae whiua (swing legs).


Viewing – Students practise listening and responding to commands in the suggested line dance activity for the song Whakarongo tamariki mā. This waiata introduces more reo kori language, including huri matau (turn to the right) and ringaringa kei waho (hands stretched out). It also has alternative commands for movements in our story, such as hīkoi whakamua (walk forwards) and tītaha te haere (move sideways).


Personalised choreography – After watching an example video, students work in small groups to choreograph their own movements to music.

The video includes the following rhythmic commands:

Waewae takahia – tahi, rua e. (Stamp your feet – one, two.)

Ringaringa ki runga – piu haere e. (Hands up – waving about.)

Ka hura, ka hura – hurihuri e. (Hula, hula – turn around.)

Ka neke, ka neke – ki te taha e. (Move, move – to the side.)

Korikori tinana – kia kaha e. (Move your body – give it all you’ve got.)


Information transfer – Read out various actions that are performed at different stages of circuit training in physical education. Students respond by drawing stick figures that appropriately convey these actions.



Cloze activity – Create gaps in the written text for students to complete. A cloze is a good way to help students notice the grammar of te reo Māori, as well as improve their prediction skills and encourage them to make intelligent guesses from context and picture cues.

For example:

____ pakia.
____ takahia.
Haere ki te ____ mauī.
Hīkoi ____ mua.
____ oma.


The gaps in a cloze can represent a consistent part of speech such as nouns or pronouns. Alternatively, words can be deleted at random, for example, every third word.


You can make a cloze exercise easier for students by:

  • telling them how many letters are in the missing word
  • providing the first letter
  • giving them a list of words to choose from.

A cloze task can be extended to incorporate listening and speaking, where you read a piece of text and stop at each missing word, so students can suggest an appropriate word to fill the gap.


Strip story – Cut in half some sentences from the story. Each student receives one half. They must find the other half to create a sentence, and make sure that their combined sentence makes sense.


Research – As part of their inquiry learning, groups of students investigate a leisure activity practised by traditional Māori. They could present the findings back to the class and, if possible, demonstrate the activity to their classmates and to whānau. For example, they could demonstrate kaimakamaka (knuckle bones), whai (string games), poi, haka, mū-torere (checkers), tī rākau (stick games), mahi ringaringa (hand games), and pōtaka (spinning tops).


Mini book – Print the mini-book template (with instructions) so every child in your class can take home a mini version of this story to read with whānau.

Song / Waiata

The following waiata will support the kaupapa of the reader:

  • Pakipaki pekepeke – available in the Te Reo Kori kit from Kohia Resources
  • Pākēkē mai o matimati – includes an MP3 and song sheet, available at Hei Waiata, He Whakakoakoa
  • Tō ringa ki roto – a song about getting moving, in the Te Reo Kori - you can watch a YouTube version
  • Whatiwhati tō hope – in the Te Reo Kori kit – you can watch a YouTube version
  • Pakipaki, pakipaki – in the Te Reo Kori kit – you can watch a YouTube version

Pakipaki, pekepeke, hopehope, nekeneke

(Clap, jump, swing hips, move)

Omaoma, hurihuri, tēnā koutou katoa

(Run, turn, greetings to you all)

Karanga mai rā, mihimihi, whakarongo, kōrero

(Call, greet, listen, speak)

Āwhina mai, menemene, me te aroha e.

(Help, smile, with love.)

Using The Big Books In Early Childhood

In English-medium ECE settings, where Māori language is a natural part of the programme (as recommended in the Mana reo strand of Te Whāriki),the big books for Reo Tupu stories can be used for shared reading with tamariki.


These stories will allow teachers to weave Māori language and culture into their everyday activities, demonstrating the value they place on te reo and tikanga Māori. This is especially important for enhancing identity, sense of belonging, and well-being. The audio component of the e-books will support teachers and tamariki to pronounce te reo Māori correctly.

Stories / Pakiwaitara

The following stories are relevant to the kaupapa of this reader:


Lawson, R. (2012). Kia tūpato, Marama! Wellington: Learning Media. (Pīpī book using simple commands to play hopscotch.)


Mahuika, K., & Pewhairangi, K. (2005). Tama tū, tama ora. Wellington: Learning Media. (Pīpī book focusing on groups of children playing in different locations.)


Nohotima, P. (2002). Ko Ia tērā. Wellington: Learning Media. (Purapura story about a boy who prefers to run, jump, leap or do cartwheels, rather than walk.)


NZ Heart Foundation. (2017). Ngā mahi mātātoa a Hina rāua ko Māui. Te Hotu Manawa Māori. (A teaching kit on healthy eating and exercise, with four books covering the four seasons. Includes Hine rāua ko Māui, a waiata recorded by Ruia.)


Pene, K. Tinana kori. (2007). Wellington: Huia Publishers. (Ngā Kete Kōrero book showing children’s favourite physical activities.)


Te Awa, M. (2006). Kori tinana. Wellington: Huia Publishers. (A book showing children doing different physical exercises.)

Acknowledgements / He Mihi

The author would like to acknowledge the teachers she has worked with over the years, inspiring her to create these books. Ināianei kua mātātupu. Ka tuku mihi hoki ki te whānau Laison nō Taranaki me te whānau Takotohiwi nō Ngāti Awa, who nurtured her in te ao Māori; ko te tino koha tēnā.


She also acknowledges with fondness her Māori tutors during decades of learning, particularly Hirini Mead, Tamati Kruger, Wiremu Parker, Keri Kaa, and Ruka Broughton, and her two non-Māori mentors and role models, Mary Boyce and Fran Hunia.


All these people have added to her kete.


Kua whetūrangitia ētahi engari kāore e warewaretia ō rātou mahi maha ki te akiaki i a ia. Hei whakamutunga, ka tuku mihi ki āna mokopuna me āna tama – te pū o ēnei pukapuka.

Whakapakari Tinana / Keeping Fit PDF

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