Mahana School

The Mahana Whakapapa

Our project

Junior Room
We looked at games played by grandparents when they were young children. The children did character writing about our grandparents and crayon portraits of them using photos. We also read books and poems about grandparents. On our Grandparents Day we shared our work with parents and grandparents and played games with them. We made a timeline and put grandparents, parents and children's years of birth on it.  The children brought photos of their grandparents to school, shared them for news and displayed them. We also visited the nearby Settlers Cottage and went to Founders Park in Nelson to see how people used to live a long time ago.

We used some of the Six Thinking Hats in our project such as how the children feel about visiting Grandpa and Nana.

dressed up:
Our visit to the Settlers' Cottage
Dressed up as settlers

Middle Room
Our focus was Mahana School from its establishment in 1915 to the present day. We were fortunate to have archival interviews from very early pupils at our school, which gave us a very clear idea of the early years at Mahana School.

We worked on school days in a broader context by looking at photos of the 1890s - 1930s. These gave us a basis for our comparisons of then and now.

We used the Six Thinking Hats in our Inquiry Steps.
What can you see in the photo? White Hat
What is different/the same today? White Hat
What are the good points/bad points? Yellow and Black Hats

Photo packs, early days books
Museum kits
Visit to Founders Museum for hands on experiences
School Journal - 100 years issue
New Zealand heritage
Photo news

We learnt about early whalers and sealers.
New Zealand was the first country to give women the vote.

Senior Room
Our focus for this unit was to do a brief study of New Zealand history,  focusing on key general trends and looking more closely at important events. A major part of the work was in preparing for the school production to portray our work. This involved preparing small skits, and finding historical pictures to go with them for the backdrop. We spent a lot of time examining pictures. We looked at the people and objects in them and considered what changes have taken place.

We learnt about when people first came to New Zealand, and where they came from. How did they travel from across the sea and find New Zealand? What problems faced the first arrivals to New Zealand? When Europeans arrived how did the cultural groups interact?

We found pictures and information about New Zealand history and made a time line, recording significant events. We found out about how people lived in early New Zealand and what changes have been made to the way we carry out every day chores. We wrote brief descriptions of events and discussed how and why we have changed along the way. We also looked at our cultural links and why we have such strong ties with Britain and Europe. We specifically focused on the Nelson and local Mahana area whenever possible.

 A lot of the focus was on how and why things have changed, using thinking hat skills where we could to discuss positive and negative reasons. Much of the work was oral and class discussion as the recording process was largely with video, picture and drama, with a small amount of written work.