Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Marae Recount

My heart leaped with excitement as we marched to the hall with our own bags and our nutritious lunches that were packed for our amazing trip to Orakei Marae. As we marched down to the hall, all the girls were too busy thinking of what it might be like on the marae and how we were going to be making swaying poi.

When we entered the hall, all classes was lined in girl/boy lines and teachers were seated in their seats near their classes. Ms Hansell was sitting on the stage with her guitar and Mrs Fepuleai and our beautiful teacher Miss Hansell had their guitars too because we needed the extra practise.

When we made it to the bus, all girls burst out about how excited they were. When we made it to the marae, I thought “Wow, this is the most amazing place I’ve ever come to.” As we entered the marae gate onto the atea, I began to become serious. When we were being welcomed in, I bowed my head down with respect to the ancestors of mine.

As we walked in to the the huge whare with amazing carvings on the side and all over, we were greeted by Whaea Celeste, Matua William and their grandchildren that were performing a Maori dance and haka powhiri. As we walked into the marae class by class, we had to take off our shoes and there had to be NO running into the whare. Then after we were inside all students and teachers had to be seated in their places.

As we were seated Whaea Celeste and Matua William talked about their tribe Ngati Whatua and how the marae was made. As we listened to their speeches, very quickly the front row of the kapa haka group did a hongi with the tangata whenua of the marae. Finally it was time to have our morning tea, so that the senior syndicate could have a heap of energy for our shows. After morning tea we had to move in to two groups,the girls had to go with Whaea Celeste and the boys had to go to the little tiny whare at the back to practise there haka with Matua Wiliam.

It was finally time to perform and it was fantastic to learn about a different culture and how it was brought up.

Then it was time that Tamaki Primary had to do our item to show our thanks to the tangata whenua for their gift of letting us come to their marae. We were as great as blue berry pie. The girls’ harmony were a little dodgy, but we were still great! And the boys were just on fire! After our item we finally had to give our koha for the tangata whenua and their mokopuna.

Finally it was time to travel back to school in the bus. Right then I knew that the most important thing to the Maori culture is knowledge, because that’s where we you store our memories. I also learnt that the head is never to be hurt. The really cool thing is that I found out about the marae. It has 5 main interesting parts; the head which is the tekoteko, the middle bit is the spine, the long stick which reaches the ground in the marae is the heart of the body (te pou manawa), the beams going down are the the ribs of the body and last but not least the amo, which are the arms on the body of the marae. That’s how it all ends!

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