Learning foundations for Māori adults | Hangaia te mātāpuna o te mōhio
This report summarises three research projects that explore how success for Māori adults in the learning foundations of literacy, language and numeracy can be built on the foundations of Māori culture and identity.
Date Published: August 2009
Publisher: Ministry of Education
Hangaia te mātāpuna o te mōhio can mean to build the precious gift of knowledge or to build the well-spring of learning. It symbolises the experience of Māori adults as they re-enter education to develop their literacy, language and numeracy.
This publication summarises three research projects that explore how success for Māori adults in the learning foundations of literacy, language and numeracy can be built on the foundations of Māori culture and identity. The programmes covered range from tertiary certificates at an equivalent level to school qualifications, to vocational diplomas, to bachelor’s degree programmes. The breadth of courses recognises that, as New Zealand has open entry for over-21-year-olds, many first-year adult students studying at higher qualification levels may also need extra help with literacy and study skills. The research features pre-employment skills courses fully funded by government. It also investigates foundation or bridging courses for students seeking to strengthen their learning skills or improve their confidence before moving into higher-level study.
The three projects examine programmes taught by Māori tutors. They use a kaupapa Māori research approach, which reinforces the importance of Māori language and culture and takes for granted the validity and legitimacy of being Māori and of Māori knowledge. Māori processes include whakawhanaungatanga (making or renewing relationships), settling the wairua (inner sense of well-being or spirituality), manaakitanga, (respecting Māori customs, and working together in and for a collaborative process). A key feature of all the projects is the prominence given to the voices of the Māori participants.
An additional objective for this research is to provide opportunities that will enable Māori researchers who are new to the adult literacy, numeracy and language learning area, and/or have had limited prior research opportunities, to increase their capability in this research area.
These three research projects are part of a broader programme of government education research that builds an evidence base on how to provide high-quality and relevant adult literacy, numeracy and language learning for adults.