‘HABITATS’ at Waima School

Habitats are where it’s at here at Waima School. A student led enquiry sparked a school wide interest in the word habitat.

  1. habitat


    the natural environment of an organism; place that is natural for thelife and growth of an organism:

    a tropical habitat.

    the place where a person or thing is usually found:

    Paris is a major habitat of artists.

    a special environment for living in over an extended period, as anunderwater research vessel.

    habitation (def 1).
    synonyms: natural environment, natural element, natural territory, natural surroundings, natural terrain, home, domain, haunt;

Here are some images showing how learning is off to a creative and fun start here at Waima School. These students are from Room 1.

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Creativity Spurs Students On

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Room 1 at Waima School is a haven for new entrants who have creative and expressive flair. Mrs Bawden has hit top gear with her planning & innovative lesson delivery in class which has her students making progress in leaps & bounds.

Recent professional development focussed on the Reggio Emilia Learning Philosophy, coupled with Mrs Bawdens knowledge of the community, and her own passionate personality have motivated the young learners to a place where they are individually engaging in their learning and their enjoyment and pride is obvious as they take every opportunity to show and share about their learning with visitors to the school.

Even the classroom environment is changing in Room 1. Naturally sourced containers made of bamboo, tree stumps, stick & plasticine sculptures, and alphabet friezes made of leaves and sticks are the adornments of choice, and most have been largely sourced or made by the students themselves. This translates into students who have an increased sense of ownership in their learning environment. Everywhere they look they have memories of how they have personally contributed to their special learning space.



The Reggio Emilia philosophy is based upon the following set of principles:

  • Children must have some control over the direction of their learning;
  • Children must be able to learn through experiences of touching, moving, listening, seeing, and hearing;
  • Children have a relationship with other children and with material items in the world that children must be allowed to explore and
  • Children must have endless ways and opportunities to express themselves.

The Reggio Emilia approach to teaching young children puts the natural development of children as well as the close relationships that they share with their environment at the center of its philosophy. Early childhood programs that have successfully adapted to this educational philosophy share that they are attracted to Reggio because of the way it views and respects the child.

Grandparents Day & Tiaki Tamariki Space

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It was fabulous to see many of our grandparents yesterday as our students played host to their loved ones and took much pride in showing them around our beautiful school. After welcoming our grandparents and visitor to the school Larry Forbes, our grandparents were treated to some poetry readings, songs, and a very long line for the hariru (person to person greetings). Then we had a lovely shared kai, thank you to all those parents who sent in such a great variety of food, and each student took their grandparents around to show them the work they have done so far. Grandparents were encouraged to ask their mokopuna about their learning goals for the year and career aspirations for life so our students were able to practice articulating their dreams.

After the tour of the classrooms with their mokopuna the BOT were able to show our visitors through the newly refurbished back room which we have now called the Tiaki Tamariki Space. It includes a fully functional kitchen, mirror wall, new furniture, and a purpose built community computer lab.

Senior Sports Star at Waima School

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This week saw senior boy Cornelius Fakahua receive yet another prize as he was recognised for his stand out achievements at the Interschool Swimming Sports at Opononi Area School. School Sports Assistant Angeline recognised Cornelius because he was among a group of students who represented Waima School and placed 2nd in the only 50m race of the day. This showed not only Cornelius’s fitness levels but also his courage to enter into an event that was outside of what he had done before.

Although he has always been a consistently high performing athlete, in previous weeks Cornelius was also selected as the ‘Top Senior Male’ of the interschool softball tournament held in Kaikohe. This huge trophy takes pride of place in the administration area where all visitors to the school are able to see it and hear of Cornelius’s achievements.

Congratulations to Cornelius and his family on such a wonderful start to the year.

Netball Starts Back

Lets Play Day

Junior students from Waima & Ohaewai School enjoyed a day out at Lindvart Park in Kaikohe on Monday last week as staff from Netball Northern introduced the new junior version of the game.

The game is now made simpler so children as young as 5 years old can play netball and learn new skills. Staggering the introduction of new rules also means that the game grows with the players and the skill level builds as their experience with netball increases.

Bay of Islands Netball Centre is introducing the new version of the game with a Junior Twilight Competition starting Wednesday the 26th of February at 4:30pm followed at 5:30pm with a Parent Information Evening to outline how the new versions of the game works. The parent information evening will be presented by Netball Northern staff member Anne Nicholson and will be a good chance for parents to ask questions.

The Junior Twilight Competition will cost $20 per team to register and involves 2 x 20 minute games each week and a skills and drills demo in between games to teach schools some new skills and drills for use at their practices throughout the season.

So…. now is the time for parents and community members who are interested in being parent helpers, managers, and coaches to let the school admin Aunty Hoki know so we will know how many teams we are able to have. There are plenty of tamariki who are keen to play but we need to have a coach or parent helper for each team before we can progress.


Leadership Academy of A Company

Students at Waima School were excited to hear that past student Te Wiremu Mercer will be travelling to Italy to commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the Battle of Monte Cristo in May. The 28 Maori Battalion forged an outstanding reputation on the battlefields of Greece, Crete, North African and Italy during World War II in a courageous bid to fight for their country and for their right as Maori.

Te Wiremu, who was badged in January 2013, has gone on to achieve well academically and athletically in the academy’s unique support structure and with the backing of a caring family. As a residential program the Leadership Academy of A Company assists its cadets to achieve their dreams by supporting them in their education and with leadership development.

Each family has been asked to raise $1000 to contribute towards the total cost of travel. Local families will be doing their part through running raffles and seeking koha to help a graduate of Waima School achieve his dreams and invite you to contact the Waima School office on 094053901 if you are able to contribute or support in any way.

Kapahaka a success at Waima!

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Students from throughout the Hokianga had the chance to show case their talent at the  South Hokianga Kapahaka Festival on Fridaythe 29th of November, 2013 at Waima School.

The annual event began with a traditional haka powhiri to welcome participant schools and visitors. Kaumatua Taite Renata and Eparaima Hauraki were on hand to give welcoming speeches and to introduce the name of the ‘manu-aute’ or ‘traditional maori kite’ that Waima School families had made to symbolise the aspiring dreams of the children of Hokianga.

Master of Ceremonies, Levi Bristow, kept the crowds entertained in between the eight performances of the day giving away spot prizes and showing great knowledge of local lore and genealogy which linked each school to the next.

Festival co-ordinator Dallas Williams said it was an opportunity for the schools of South Hokianga to come together and celebrate the talents of their children and traditions of their past.

“It really is inspiring to see such beauty and poise coming from our tamariki here in the Hokianga, we have a lot to be proud of, all of us. Kapahaka is more than just performance it is about continuing on the traditions of our past and highlighting that our culture is alive and well”.

On the day stand out choreography, poi, and harmony from Kura Hokianga and the haka from Waima School set a benchmark for the year but throughout the day families watched on proudly as the children from every school bravely took the stage to perform.

The symbolism of the traditional maori kite ‘Te Manu-a-Rangi’ was continued at the close of the day when participant schools were gifted framed artworks that contained an albatross feather to remind them of their part to play in supporting the dreams and aspirations of their students. Young Isla Jean Appelhof Butler from Opononi who had stunned the crowd earlier with her solo performance, fittingly finished the day off when she accepted the hand-over of the festival on behalf of Opononi School who will be the hosts in 2014. In a moving gesture students from Waima and Opononi challenged each other while Whaea Claire Papuni led a karanga or traditional call and MC Levi Bristow prayed a blessing over the exchange.

Acknowledgement must go to all of the participant schools -TKKM Hokianga, Horeke School, Rawene School, Opononi Area School and Waima School for their outstanding performances on the day and to host school Waima for a well organised and produced festival which was enjoyed by all. Nau mai haere mai koutou katoa ki te Kura Takiwa o Opononi I te tau 2014. Welcome one and all to Opononi Area School in 2014.