SPARKLERS / Identity and culture

Karawhiua mai ōu moemoeā Matariki - Make a Matariki wish!

Give tamariki the opportunity to make a moemoeā (wish) upon the Matariki whetū Hiwa-i-te-rangi, but also learn about how to make a good moemoeā (wish) come true!
Connections with the NZ Curriculum and Mental Health Education Guide (learn more)

He aha ai? – Why we love it

Connecting with Matariki is an important part of our Aotearoa culture. Feeling proud of our culture and identity impacts positively on our wellbeing. The reason we particularly love this activity is it connects us with Hiwa-i-te-rangi, the wishing whetū. Here we carefully analyse moemoeā (wishes) and help tamariki make these come true.

Tāngia ēnei tohutohu – Print me


If needed, you might like to introduce Matariki using this information as a guide.

Kōrero about Hiwa-i-te-rangi - the wishing star. It is to Hiwa-i-te-rangi that we send their moemoeā (wishes) or make a resolution for the coming year - similar to wishing upon a star.

We love this video from Prof Rangi Matamua (whose work we draw upon a lot!).

Then explore moemoeā (wishes)! Kōrero with tamariki about their wheako (experiences) of moemoeā (wishes) – have they made some before, have they come true?

Hei mahi - What to do

Using the worksheet, ask tamariki to write down a moemoeā (wish) that they might send up to Hiwa-i-te-rangi. Make sure it’s a proper, super good wish!

He aha te take o tēnei moemoeā? Ask tamariki to think about why this wish is important to them.

Ask some tamariki to share their moemoeā or hopes and dreams, making sure to note that Hiwa-i-te-rangi has no rules around this – the moemoeā (wish) may still come true even though they shared it!

Ask how likely they think it is that their moemoeā (wish) will come true?

Continue to complete the handout and kōrero about what they’re noticing as they do so.

Intrinsic and extrinsic moemoeā

While most tamariki will have chosen an extrinsic moemoeā (wish)… Introduce the concept of intrinsic and extrinsic rewards.

  • Intrinsic – inside of ourselves: being kinder, braver, getting better at maths, hockey or poetry
  • Extrinsic – outside of ourselves: doing or getting something that usually costs money!

Ask tamariki to make another moemoeā (wish) on their handout – an intrinsic moemoeā this time and continue with their worksheet.

Ask what can help our moemoeā (wishes) to come true? - Tamariki might have lots of good ideas here... things they’ve been told, that they hold dear and true!

Our moemoeā (wishes) can have a higher chance of coming true if:

  • we let someone else know
  • we write it down
  • we have some way of helping or influencing the moemoeā to come true.

Me aro tonu – Ask what are they noticing?

Explain that lots of us wish for extrinsic things - why do you think this is? They can:

  • be a fast ‘good feelings’ fix – but only for a short period time
  • help us show it off! – but soon goes out of fashion/style

But intrinsic things we have some control over. They also are better for our wellbeing (how we feel). Instrinic wishes can:

  • last a life-time
  • propel us to do good things for ourselves and others

Complete the origami whetū, adding their moemoeā (wishes) to the inside to keep them hidden and safe. The resulting whetū might make a great wall display over Matariki. After Matariki, send them home with tamariki to keep working on their moemoeā (wish), and wishing.

What next?

Try another Matariki activity…

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