Background of the Waka Hourua

For our school house groups, we have decided to identify with four waka hourua. Read on to learn more about them...



Our Pacific ancestors were skilled ocean voyagers and navigators, exploring the furthest corners of the vast Pacific Ocean, and beyond. This knowledge and skill had been passed down through generations for thousands of years, surviving and protected within indigenous knowledge systems. By the mid 20th Century, this knowledge had been lost from many families and cultures, and by the 1970's the knowledge only remained alive within a handful of navigators in Micronesia. Following the transfer of knowledge from Papa Mau Piailug to a select few navigators from around the Pacific, the practices of traditional Pacific ocean navigation are actively being revitalised and preserved.

Waka hourua are used to navigate.  They help to move forward and to explore, they guide and they protect.  With this in mind, we look to the waka to provide us with our vision for our Ngaruawahia High School Waka Roopu.  To move forward as one while navigating our way through challenges and providing a safe place to participate.

We have asked the Captain of Haunui waka, John-Reid Willison to provide us with 4 names for our school house groups inspired by the waka hourua of the Pacific.  He has provided us with the following:

Haunui - Orange (Taamaki Makaurau - Auckland)

Te Matau a Maui - Purple (Ahuriri - Napier)

Marumaruatua - Green (Cook Islands)

Hinemoana - White (Tauranga)

---Matua Josh

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