Posted on 13 November 2016

Science Wānanga

The Challenge recently supported a Science Wānanga organised by the University of Otago for Māori students in years 9-10 from schools in Te Tau Ihu (Mohua, Nelson, Marlborough and Kaikoura).

The focus of the wānanga was marine science, water chemistry and physics connected to the wellbeing of the Marlborough Sounds and gave students an outstanding opportunity to do hands-on science of local importance to the rohe (area) and it’s people.The University of Otago have held many such wānanga across the country over the last several years, but this was the first time schools from the Challenge case study area were involved.   The wānanga gives students the rare chance to connect the place-based mātauranga Māori from within their communities with science. 

Wānanga sessions were led by local iwi representatives, scientists and tertiary students and included learning about iwi led marine research projects in the region, marine species identification, water quality testing, the properties of light, as well as a whole range of fun activities that encourage scientific inquiry.  Being hosted in a marae environment grounds all of the participants enabling mutual learning and teaching between students, teachers, scientists and iwi.  In addition, it provides a unique opportunity for students from a range of schools to engage in a safe, comfortable and fun setting.

In partnership with the University of Otago, the Challenge hopes to host a further wānanga centred in our case study area of Tasman/Golden Bay in 2017. 

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