AUT’s Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Development - Te Ara Poutama - will be offering zero fees te reo classes at its South Campus in Manukau starting July 2015.
The ‘Introduction to Conversational Māori’ classes are open to anyone wanting to pick up basic oral and written proficiency of the language. The lessons will follow themes which will reinforce grammar and vocabulary.
Dean of Te Ara Poutama, and Pro-Vice Chancellor of Māori Advancement and Learning & Teaching, Professor Pare Keiha says the faculty is looking forward to welcoming the local Manukau community to the zero fees classes at AUT’s South Campus.
“Te Ara Poutama is committed to ensuring our indigenous language te reo Māori continues to be understood and spoken for many, many generations to come.
“It is our key aim to support and encourage and encourage learners in their journey towards greater proficiency in te reo Māori.”
Statistics NZ report that in 2013, only 55 per cent of Māori adults were able to speak more than a few words of phrases in te reo Māori.AUT Te reo Māori lecturer Jamie Cowell says the language has a place in the cultural heritage of New Zealanders.
“As New Zealand’s indigenous language, te reo Māori is at the centre of Māori culture, customs and identity.”
“The Māori language learning journey, offers rich insight and understanding of the Māori culture, values and practices and connect us to the Māori world.”
The classes will use Te Whanake, a te reo Māori digital language resource developed by Te Ipukarea – The National Maori Language Institute at AUT, which brings together a set of textbooks, study guides, CDs, teachers' manuals and a dictionary for learning and teaching te reo Māori.
Classes will be held on campus, twice weekly over the course of 12 weeks, on Tuesdays and Thursday, from 5pm to 8pm. Students have the option of going to either the Tuesday class or the Thursday class.
Māori language in New Zealand
Results of the Te Kupenga survey carried out by Statistics NZ show that in 2013 an estimated 257,500 (55 per cent) Māori aged 15+ self-report an ability to speak te reo Māori, defined as more than a few words or phrases of the language. This compares to the results of the Te Puni Kokiri survey on the health of Māori language in 2001 which found 153,500 (42 percent) Māori adults reported some ability to speak te reo Māori.
* 257,500 (55 per cent) Māori adults had some ability to speak te reo Māori; that is, they were able to speak more than a few words or phrases in the language. This compares with 153,500 (42 per cent) in 2001.
* 50,000 (11 percent) Māori adults could speak te reo Māori very well or well; that is, they could speak about almost anything or many things in Māori.
* Between 2001 and 2013 there was a large increase in the proportion of younger Māori who reported some ability to speak te reo Māori.
* 164,500 (35 percent) Māori adults reported speaking some te reo Māori within the home.
Source: Te Kupenga survey, Statistics New Zealand