Tuakana-Teina is a traditional Māori cultural philosophy and practice; literally referring to the relationship between an older and younger sibling, or close family members like cousins. It is when an older or more expert tuakana (brother, sister or cousin) helps and guides a younger or less expert teina.

At Green School New Zealand, we have found that utilising this in the classroom between learners has the most wonderful benefits. Through this type of connection, our learners are becoming more confident with their interactions, learning new skills, feeling supported and enjoying being part of a wider community.

Throughout Term 2 we practiced tuakana-teina in the following ways;

Maths – Whole school problem solving increases conscious collaboration, flexible thinking, different level contributions and so much more.

Reading – Regular buddy reading with middle school learners helps our younger learners build fluency, expression and a love for reading, whilst building confidence and stamina in independent level texts for the older child.

Art and craft – Learning traditional skills, fine motor development and more – so much goodness here!

Taiao Rumaki (Nature Day) – Our Year 1 – 4 kids come together for this. The relationships speak for themselves! We are sharing strengths, building community, communication, and stamina!