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Pre-school Matariki celebration


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Pre-school student and their parent looking at the Matariki star display.The Pre-school’s Matariki celebration was a beautiful reminder of the importance of community, being grateful for abundance, and sharing kai with family and friends.

Around 30 of the 48 Pre-school families were represented at the special occasion, with guests spanning the generations, says Head of Pre-school, Mandy Jenkins. “There was lots of lovely chatter as families connected with each other and shared stories. We had wonderful feedback that they loved feeling part of the extended Pre-school family and getting to know each other with unhurried time to spend in deeper conversations.”

Sharing kai is a big part of Matariki, and in the very Kiwi tradition, each family was asked to bring a plate, says Mandy. “We had lots of generous food contributions from our families, which given the diversity of our community was a truly multi-cultural experience. In a similar way to Christmas time, we also asked our community to donate food items to share with families who are less fortunate. This helps to reinforce the children’s compassion for others and the importance of giving back.”

The Pre-school children proudly showed their whānau the Matariki themed artworks they created during Term 2, including paintings of the night sky, stars, and kites, and sharing some new waiata they had learnt. “During the term we talked about the deeper meaning of Matariki, delving into the associated legends and traditions, and the significance of the wishing star, Hiwaiterangi. The children talked about their own wishes, and we asked whānau to write down wishes for the future of their families.”

The Matariki celebration was a wonderful opportunity for new families to feel part of the Pre-school community and for existing families to strengthen their bonds, says Mandy. “The children loved inviting whānau into their special space and showing them all the things they do. It was a magical evening.”

Matariki celebration fosters community connection with shared kai, art displays, and meaningful reflections on wishes.