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Mahara Gallery and Nga Manu Nature Reserve

We worked with Mahara Gallery and Nga Manu Nature Reserve on the theme “Water”.

Mahara Gallery and Nga Manu Nature Reserve collaborated in offering an exciting art, poetry and science program to local schools. We were keen to take part!

We visited Nga Manu and we were taken on a wild adventure into the world of NATURE. We did a wild wet land quiz about what creatures we thought we would see. We investigated the creatures that live in the water of the Nga Manu pond. We also got to feed the eels!

We then visited Mahara Gallery, enjoyed the exhibitions, drawing, discussions about poetry and
hearing their ideas about what we might create to be displayed at the gallery. Wow! We wrote
poems about the sea and we drew our favourite pictures that we saw.

The following week an artist called Jackie came into our classroom and supported us in developing our dye and black ink drawings of eels, frogs, pukekos, crayfish, fish and many other wetlands
creatures. After our visit to Nga Manu we knew exactly what we were going to draw. We continued
developing our art in class and had it all ready to be framed and displayed at the gallery.
Several weeks later we attended the opening of the exhibition. Nga Manu were very generous and
gave us a stream testing kit which we have since used testing the health of our stream I know we will
get a great deal of learning from this. It was really exciting to see our art on display in a real gallery
where lots of people could see it. What an adventure!

Several of our students contributed art work to the Wai Ora, Water Life exhibition at Mahara Gallery which featured artworks, weaving and poetry by 227 school children from six Kapiti schools, mostly from years 5 and 6. The exhibition ran from 6 September to 24 November 2013.

“The exhibition, and the book, are a celebration of colour, creativity and engagement with ideas and images concerned with the essential role that water plays in our environment, our lives, our history and our culture. This is the second successful partnership between Nga Manu Nature Reserve and Mahara Gallery, following Native Habitats, Waikanae Children’s Creations, in 2012, and has again been generously supported by the Philipp Family Foundation.”

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