Wednesday, 20 October 2010


About Te Reo. But sorry, blaming the government for the slow down in those learning is silly - the argument is not going to wash. Seriously the Waitangi Tribunal has lost all credibility with this one. Maori themselves need to take responsibility for making the language a much more important part of their strategic future.

Its up to whanau, hapu, iwi to work out ways to increase the usage now. With rights come responsibility. And while Maori earned the right to have their language made official in NZ it is now their responsibility to promote its usage.

However we think that while the classical Te Reo may be losing favour and interest with the young, both Maori and pakeha are peppering the conversation with words drawn from Maori.

The blending of the two languages has been astounding in the last decade or so.

We have :

Going to get a kai

Having a moi

Whanau is common


Ae for yes

Korero for discussion
Kapai for good
Mana respect
Potae for hat

Hui for a gathering

are just a few that are now well entrenched in NZ culture.

Although every now and then someone gets it wrong, and sometime our pronunciation leaves people scratching we are all more relaxed about the usage of Te Reo.

And so we should be. Nothing is static. Society changes and while we see that holding fast to Maori as a language is a laudable goal, a common conversation that borrows from both is a sign of the maturation of our society.

So it is kapai to korero the reo but the real mana for Maori will be when they say ae its our problem and our whanau is going to make it a priority.

1 comment:

Evelyn Cook said...

The responsibility for the survival of Te Reo belongs to us all and that means that not only must it be taught at schools but it must be spoken widely.

When I started at the school I worked at, I was a part time teacher's aide who actually taught in every class in the school and prepared resources etc. I replaced a trained teacher who had, earlier in the year, worked alongside two trained teachers teaching Te Reo. After 5 months came a new school year and my hours were cut to only 5 per week. A year later, my position was disestablished. The school now has noone who's sole responsibility is the nurturing of Te Reo. Unfortunately, my story is very common and is one of the reasons that my son, a first language speaker, is no longer working in the field.

Everyone needs to make a commitment and, because money is part of the problem, the Government does need to take some reponsibility. In the meantime those of us who have been privileged to learn some reo need to kōrero.

Karawhuia te reo, ahakoa kei hea