Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Media Take: Te Mātāwai and the future of the language

10 Responses

  • Sacha,

    Brilliant korero, thanks.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19686 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    Brilliant korero, thanks.

    Yeah, it was. And I went into it not quite sure how it was going to go.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The traditional enculturated grounding in mutual respect carried the day. Imagine the equivalent Pākehā conversation ..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19686 posts Report Reply

  • Jeanette King,

    Tēnā koe Russell, kōrua ko Toi. Pai rawa tēnei kōrero. Loved hearing from Willie, Waihoroi, Leonie and Jennifer. Loved Willie's passion for te reo and advocacy. I was/am sceptical about the new Te Mātāwai structure but if Willie's kōrero is anything to go by I am very heartened. He obviously knows the realities and difficulties in increasing the numbers of reo speakers but his passionate determination also came across. Great also to hear Leonie and Jennifer's stories as adult learners of te reo - an inspiration to many, I hope. Always a pleasure to watch Wassie - he just loves a good argument/discussion. Mauriora ki a kōrua mō tēnei hōtaka me te titiro ki tēnei kaupapa nui anō hoki.

    Ōtautahi • Since Oct 2010 • 43 posts Report Reply

  • TracyMac,

    All us Pakeha should know more of Te Reo - most of us would struggle to reach the standard of "broken phrases" that many of us manage to acquire for travelling to non-English-speaking countries, much less anything else.

    I was steered towards languages at college, but that explicitly did not include Maori - at a school that was 70% plus Maori and Polynesian. Only a couple of Pakeha pupils in those classes. It makes little sense, because in terms of is orthography and pretty damn regular grammar, it's a great language to learn in a purely linguistic sense. And then of course, there is the deeper participation in our nation's cultural heritage, and cultural future.

    Things have definitely improved since kohanga reo and other initiatives, and I welcome this one, despite what seems to me to be an odd spokesman. I suppose he has name recognition, and evidently cares about moving this forward.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 701 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    I'm crap at languages, mostly because I can never gather the will to spend the necessary time, and partly some natural ineptitude, my high school French teacher will attest to that.

    So it was with some disappointment that I heard a Discovery podcast recently about bilingualism and it's positive impacts on resistance to dementia in later life as well as the benefits that are becoming clear in learning.

    I doubt I'll ever commit to spending the time needed to become fluent in any 2nd language unless I'm forced to by immersion - which turns out to be the best way to learn 2nd languages - they are now teaching kids 2nd languages by teaching other subjects (eg art) in the 2nd language rather than teaching the language the way I failed to learn French.

    But I am trying to pick up some of the pronunciation and some more words of New Zealand's first language. At some point I'd like to at least be able to say sorry and thank you and where's the loo.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4451 posts Report Reply

  • Carol Stewart,

    Good on you Bart. Like Tracy, I was steered towards languages at high school, and learned French for three years, which I've taken up again more recently at the Alliance Francaise. It's been useful for travelling around the Pacific - I worked on an island in Vanuatu where only Bislama and French was spoken, and I was definitely thankful for every scrap of French I could muster (and annoyed with myself that I didn't take a dictionary to look up more vocab). I've learned some Spanish too, so I guess I am lucky enough to have reasonable aptitude for languages.

    Learning te reo back then was definitely not something that was encouraged for academic kids. That's really a shame, because what little I know of te reo suggests that it's a lovely language to learn.

    I'm so proud that my lad is learning te reo at high school, currently at NCEA level 2, and also doing kapahaka. Brilliant life skills.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2008 • 821 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Carol Stewart,

    I'm so proud that my lad is learning te reo at high school, currently at NCEA level 2, and also doing kapahaka. Brilliant life skills.

    That's great. Te reo should, of course, be part of the primary school curriculum. A lot of schools do it off their own bat, but why muck about? Just make it part of every New Zealand child's education.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Cameron Banks,

    > nurture the reo.

    I assume your word processor treats Maori like mine.

    Ak • Since Jun 2016 • 1 posts Report Reply

  • Doug Rinckes, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Totally agree with this. I got through an NZ education (70s+80s) on the basis of a couple of Maori songs in intermediate and I wish it had been a core part of the curriculum.

    Zurich, Switzerland • Since Jun 2016 • 1 posts Report Reply

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