Tertiary Update Vol 23 No 10

Matariki is the Māori name for a cluster of stars which is visible in our night sky at a specific time of the year. In 2019, from 25 to 28 June, Matariki will re-appear in the dawn sky – signalling the start of the Māori New Year.

Matariki is a time to celebrate new life, to remember those who’ve passed and to plan for the future. It’s a time to spend with whānau and friends – to enjoy kai, waiata, tākaro, and haka.

Our tūpuna would look to Matariki for help with their harvesting of crops and other food sources. When Matariki disappeared from the sky in April/May, it was time to preserve crops for the winter season. When it re-appeared in June/July, our tūpuna would read the stars to predict the upcoming season – clear and bright stars promised a warm and abundant winter while hazy stars warned of a bleak winter.

The Matariki cluster has nine visible stars: Matariki, Tupu-ā-Rangi, Waipuna-ā-Rangi, Waitī, Tupu-ā-Nuku, Ururangi, Waitā, Pōhutukawa and Hiwa-i-te-Rangi.

Each star holds a certain significance over our wellbeing and environment, as seen from the Māori view of the world.

In keeping with the significance of these nine stars, the Tertiary Education Union Te Hautū Kahurangi (TEU) has brought together nine Māori leaders, academics and educators for a special Tertiary Update, Hau Taki Haere: Te iwa o Matariki.

Much like the Matariki cluster of stars, each of the nine stories are unique, yet together they form one kaupapa, and share common themes of unity, mana, tikanga and Mātauranga Māori.

In this edition:

1) Matariki, a time of unity for Aotearoa

Professor Rangi Matamua (Tūhoe) explores both the personal and collective significance of Matariki.

2) Tauira Māori celebrate and reflect on Matariki

Mamaeroa Merito (Te Arawa) reflects on what Matariki means for her and tauira Māori in light of increasing mental health needs in the student community.

3) Supporting Māori food sovereignty and sustainable practices over Matariki

Dr Jessica Hutchings (Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Huirata, Gujarati) reflects on the importance of the Māori food sovereignty movement and the significance of Matariki in mindful food consumption and hauora.

4) Incorporating Mātauranga Māori into our everyday practices

Hūhana Wātene (Ngāti Porou) shares her experiences of the positive ways Mātauranga Māori can be brought into our everyday teaching and learning environment.

5) Reaching 1 million te reo Māori speakers in Aotearoa

Hine McLetchie (Ngāpuhi) reflects on the challenges we must face if we are to meet the Government’s te reo Māori targets.

6) Ensuring there is mana in the Mana in Mahi programme

Dr Miriama Postlethwaite (Tūhoe) shares her whakaaro on the need to centre the concept of mana in the Government’s Mana in Mahi – Strength in Work programme.

7) Unlocking solutions to the Māori housing crisis through kaupapa Māori research

Dr Jessica Hutchings (Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Huirapa, Gujarati) discusses the importance of Kaupapa Māori research paradigms and methodologies in unlocking solutions to the Māori housing crisis.

8) Teaching and learning Indigeneity and citizenship

Veronica Tawhai (Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Uepohatu) shares with us some of the findings from her recently submitted PhD.

9) The Tertiary Education Strategy provides an opportunity to increase access for Māori

Lee Cooper (Ngāpuhi) discusses early input into the Government’s new Tertiary Education Strategy by TEU Māori members.

For more resources and information on Matariki:

Books about Matariki

Matariki - Māori New Year, Paul Meredith https://teara.govt.nz/en/matariki-maori-new-year

Matariki: The Star of the Year, Rangi Matamua - https://www.huia.co.nz/huia-bookshop/bookshop/matariki-the-star-of-the-year/

Matariki: Te Whetū Tapu o te Tau, Rangi Matamua - https://www.huia.co.nz/huia-bookshop/bookshop/matariki-te-whetu-o-te-tau/

Matariki activities and events around Aotearoa


Matariki videos/webisodes

Rangi Matamua, Matariki presentation to Ngāi Tāmanuhiri - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3FQ-jyydF8

Rangi Matamua, Te Whānau Mārama (in te reo Māori) - https://www.facebook.com/Livingbythestars/videos/444634919700101/

Matariki film trailer - https://www.nzonscreen.com/title/matariki-2010 

Matariki Facebook page

Living By The Stars https://www.facebook.com/Livingbythestars/

Generic information/resources on Matariki

The Project - https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2018/06/everything-you-wanted-to-know-about-matariki-but-were-too-embarrassed-to-ask.html

Te Iwi o Matariki, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa - https://www.twoa.ac.nz/Pages/Te-Iwa-o-Matariki?sc_lang=en

Matariki, Te Ao Hou - http://teaohou.natlib.govt.nz/journals/teaohou/issue/Mao61TeA/c6.html

Te Iwa o Matariki - https://www.twoa.ac.nz/Pages/Te-Iwa-o-Matariki?sc_lang=en