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    Rights: University of Waikato
    Published 27 July 2018 Referencing Hub media
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    Ka whakamārama a Tiahuia Kawe-Small i kā tikaka o te Kura e ana ki te whakamateka o kā pepe tuna i roto i te mahi pūtaiao.

    English translation
    Tiahuia Kawe-Small, Principal of Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ōtepoti, explains how the kura dealt with the issue of killing moths for scientific observation.

    Tuhinga

    TIAHUIA KAWE-SMALL

    Āe. Ko tētehi āwangawanga, i puta mai he mahi kohi pepe, ko te āhuatanga whakamate i ngā pepe. He rerekē tērā tikanga ki a mātou nā te mea kei raro i te korowai o te Aho Matua. He mauri tō tēnā, tō tēnā o ngā aitanga i runga i te whenua. Nā reira, ko tērā tikanga, he rerekē ki a mātou ki te whakamate mō te aha? Koirā te pātai. Mō te aha ka whakamate ai ēnei taonga o Tāne. Nā runga i tēnā, i āta wetiweti mātou ngā tamariki, i ohorere rātou i tēnā āhuatanga rerekē. I wetiweti i te tuatahi “he aha i pērā ai tēnei āhuatanga i roto, te ao o te kaipūtaiao Pākehā?”.

    Nā reira, mai tēnā huarahi i whakaaro mātou ko tērā te huarahi mō te āta titiro ki tōnā āhua. E kore neke ka tino kite koe i tōnā āhua, ki tōnā rerehua. I te whānau maitanga o te anuhe, ko tōnā mahi ko te kai ki te whānau puawai, ka puta i tōnā tūngaungau, ka puawai kātahi ka whānau mai anō. Hei te wā ka puta i tōnā tūngaungau ko tēnā hoki he hua mō te orangatanga o te pepe.

    He maha pepe koirā. Nā i te whakaaro ngā tamariki ‘mm kāore au i te tino rata tonu ki tēnā āhuatanga, whakamate, homai he huarahi atu anō, tērā pea me tango whakaahua o te pepe, me āta titiro ki tērā whakaahua mēnā ka taea te tū, te kimi i te ingoa o tērā pepe.

    Ko tēnā engari kei ia kura, kei ia whānau, ia tamaiti tō rātou ake tikanga. Ki a mātoui whiriwhiri ka whakamoe ngā pepe hei oranga mō te rerenga rauropi o tēnei kura. I tuku te karakia. E mōhio ana mātou he taonga nō Tāne. I ako mātou i ngā pūrākau e ana ki ngā pepe. Mā te karakia e tau pai tēnei momo wero i waenganui i a mātou. Tikanga Pākehā – Tikanga Māori.

    Nā reira hei te mutunga i kimi mātou he huarahi pai mā mātou. E ora tonu ana tō mātou taiao i runga i te mōhiotanga ko te pepe tētehi matatini i roto i te rerenga rauropi, hauropi rānei o tēnei kura. He maha ngā pepe, nā reira, kāore he take mā mātou te whakamate i te katoa o te whānau, tērā pea rua o ia whānau ka whakamoe, ka āta titiro, ka tiaki . Ko tērā tētehi, tō mātou huarahi i tēnei kura.

    English translation

    TIAHUIA KAWE-SMALL

    One issue, one query we had was the killing of the moths. That is a very different practice to ours, which are underpinned by te Aho Matua values and customs. Every living thing on Earth has a life force, so that is a different approach. To kill for what? That’s the question. Why are we killing these gifts from Tāne? The children were horrified, they were shocked at this notion. They were horrified at first – why does science have these protocols?

    After that, we thought about what strategy we had to move forward to really see the moths and their form and beauty. The moth won’t move, it would be calm and you can clearly see the moth’s form and its beauty. That was another idea. When the caterpillar is born, its job is to eat many plants and then it forms a chrysalis and it is reborn. The state of the caterpillar in the chrysalis is healthy for its regrowth.

    There are many moths. The children still weren’t sure about killing the moths. “We don’t like this path, give us another path. Maybe we should take photos of the moths and examine the photo to see what species it is.” Every school, every family, every child will have their own protocols and customs. We chose to sacrifice the moths to promote the biodiversity at the school. We recited chants. We know the moths are a gift from Tāne. We learned stories about the moths. The chants settled us to move forward with this project. Pākehā custom – Māori custom.

    In the end, we found a good pathway forward. Our environment is healthy because we know that there is biodiversity at our school. There are many moths. There was no need to kill all of the moths. We only chose a few, maybe two of each moth family. We examined them – we cared for them – that was how we dealt with it.

    He mihi ki a koutou:

    Tiahuia Kawe-Small
    Dr Barbara Anderson
    Dr Robert Hoare
    The tamariki of Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ōtepoti
    Manaaki Whenua – Landcare Research

    Kāi Tahu dialect

    The people in this resource use the Kāi Tahu dialect. Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ōtepoti is based within the Ngāi Tahu Takiwā.