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  • Our June pānui features the night sky, the deep oceans and pedagogy on scientific investigations.

    Celebrating Matariki

    Winter brings opportunities to view the night sky. As Aotearoa New Zealand approaches the rise of the Matariki star cluster for 2021, look upward for authentic cross-curricular science learning.

    Rights: Forest & Bird’s Kiwi Conservation Club

    Te kāhui o Matariki

    Matariki is the Māori name for the cluster of stars that signal the beginning of a new year.

    As the stories of Matariki differ between different iwi and hapu groups, so do the spelling of the stars' names. Note that some spellings use hyphens and others do not.


    Matariki is one of the most widely known star clusters around the world! The Hub has several resources that introduce both the science and mātauranga of this special group of whetū:

    Observing the night skies

    Matariki is part of te Maramataka – the traditional Māori lunar calendar. Whetū and ngā mata o te marama (phases of the Moon) inform many traditional practices, including wayfinding.

    Learn more about the Moon (and some of its misconceptions) before going outside to observe how the Moon appears to move across the sky.

    Ways of investigating in science

    Discover a range of scientific approaches – select a label for videos and more information to support your understanding.

    Investigations in science

    Science and mātauranga pūtaiao use investigations to collect data and help us make sense of the world around us. All learners are able to gather data – from the early years to high school and beyond. Our new article Investigating in science unpacks what this might look like in the classroom. It contains the interactive Ways of investigating in science, which covers a range of scientific approaches along with helpful videos and links to practical resources.

    Using infographics to communicate in science

    Science knowledge is often communicated through visual representations. The Hub has teamed up with the Department of Conservation to host marine infographics that illustrate and explain key science ideas surrounding habitats, biodiversity and establishing special reserves:

    Visual representations like infographics have literacy components that students may need support to understand. The activity Using infographics helps students think about how the data is presented and what message the representation is trying to convey.

    New Zealand marine habitats

    The ocean has an amazing diversity of habitat types and species that live within them.

    Take the opportunity to visit a marine reserve, even if winter is keeping you indoors!

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    Science Learning Hub – Pokapū Akoranga Pūtaiao

    Published 28 June 2021 Referencing Hub articles
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