Friday, 31 July 2015

In Other Words

As part of their Reading Activities, the Bananas Reading Group had to convert an original poem into a narrative, including the important language and structural features of this text type. Here is their adaptation:

(This is the original poem)

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Writing Participants

Sini, Don and  Miria were awarded the Participant's Certificate for entering in the 2015 Barfoot & Thompson Young Authors Challenge writing competition. There were over 1000 entries from all over Auckland and Northland and their stories had to link with the theme: 'There's No Place Like Home'.

Here is Miria's story:
    My Home Is Where My Heart Is

    From a visitors point of view my homeland appears to be a wreck but to me it's still home. Pipiwai. I was raised there and I have many childhood memories with many family members and enjoyable experiences with animals.

Firstly the landscape is astonishing. From the rivers to the towering country hills and mountains in the far distance. The fragrance of the countryside is fresh  with a hint of farm manure and the smell of pine in the breeze. Everywhere you sight is lush green grassy paddocks with multi coloured cows, bulls, sheep, horses and free range chickens.

Out of many various stories my nana has told me this would be my favourite. Te Heke a courageous Ngapuhi chief discovered a fantasizing big rock in a plot of a Pakehas’ land. In the rock are four holes and water squirts out of them. Pipiwai inherited its name from this rock. Pipi means to squirt and wai means water. This rock is located in a paddock on Moores Road.

While I'm there, I like to indulge in the luxurious clear waters. If you're trying to get privacy this is almost impossible because all the locals gather to enjoy time with their whanau and friends or to cool off in the summer heat. There are many streams, rivers and lakes you can soak in, in the peace and quiet.

Going on nature walks is something I really love. Just walking through forests and coming across interesting objects you wouldn't have expected to sight like unusual bird feathers, animal tracks and sap from kauri and gum trees. Collecting and admiring new things you're unfamiliar with is amazing. Seeing all of the land around me shift a bit every time I'm there, so there are always new adventures to take on daily.

Te Horo is the only primary school in Pipiwai. Every Wednesday it used to hold a Twilight family night to fundraise money for new construction to take place around the school or just to gather and enjoy time with the whanau. Adults and children were able to participate in activities that involve netball, volleyball and touch. The best thing was the hearty Maori food such as Maori burgers, hangi, fried bread and kids treats.

If you need milk, petroleum or meat, farmers are willing to barter. They are so generous they even give kids good paying jobs in the holidays if you’re alright with getting down and dirty with the animals: waking at early hours in the morning while the dew sets on the grass and condensation forms on the windows. Would you consider being a part time farmer?

Eels are a delicacy in the Maori culture. There are many streams located around Pipiwai some may even be just a paddock away. The key to catching eels is to be quiet and stationary. Ripples on the surface of the water are a great sign, the more ripples the more eels. Eels are nocturnal so it's best to go eeling at sundown.

Unfortunately some households can’t access water to flush their toilets so there’s a long drop. There aren’t any lights and you have to set off in the dark alone or alongside a parent. But on the bright side it’s more efficient and you’re using less water. When it comes to that time of the year  you have to make a new plot for your long drop, you get yourself stuck in quite a smelly situation.

I gotta say, “There's no place like home.”


whanau - family
marae - Maori meeting house
ataahua - beautiful