streda 14. marca 2012

The Powhiri - Maori welcome (New Zealand)

Photo 1
The Powhiri. The is a formal Maori welcome. As you can see in this photo there are a group of women standing in the front – they are the new female staff. The new boys (that’s us) are standing at the back. If the boys (or men) were standing at the front then this would be seen as a sign of aggression.
Photo 2
The lady in the middle of the photo is calling us onto the marae (it sounds a bit like a song), this is where we go to be welcomed and accepted into the school.
Photo 5
This lady is responding in this photo is responding to the call to walk onto the marae. All the new people to the school walk slowly behind her.
Photo 6
Those of us wearing the grey shirts are new juniors to the school. The ones wearing the white shirts and ties are our senior students. These guys are our peer support leaders and help us out at school for the first few months.
Photo 7
For this welcome our marae is outside. When we get there the staff take the seats in front and the students file in behind them.
Photo 8
The lady is finishing the calling. The men are sitting in the front this time to protect the women sitting at the back.
Photo 9
This gentleman is welcoming all the year 9’s into the school for 2012. He is also asking us to remember those who have gone before us and asking the rest of the school to look after us.
Photo 10
The rest of the school stand and wait quietly while we all come in.
Photo 11
The gentleman who is giving the welcoming speech is talking in Maori. Most of the people at the ceremony do not understand how to speak Maori but we know the kind of stuff he will be saying.
Photo 12
Some of the senior boys are doing a war dance , it is called a haka. It looks cool. Some people do hakas a lot e.g. a kapahaka group (cultural group) or the All Blacks which is New Zealand’s rugby team.
Photo 13
The haka is meant to warn visitors of the strength of the local people. It was really cool watching the boys perform.
Photo 14
This is the Rector (another name for Principal) of the school. He is giving a welcome speech (in English) to welcome the new staff and students to the school. He also remembered a staff member who had recently passed away.
Photo 15
The senior kapahaka group performed another haka. They sound and look really cool. We will all get to learn the haka so that when there is a sports exchange on the whole school will perform it.
Photo 16
The student standing in the middle of the haka group is the leader and he is responsible for keeping them in time and united.
Photo 17
After the manuhiri (the home side) have had their welcome the visitors get a turn. The man talked (in Maori) about how pleased we all were to be here.
Photo 18
The new staff then stands and sing a waiata (song) in response to the one the old staff have sung.
Photo 19
This is where the new staff are accepted into the school. This is usually a hongi, but the staff the know each other often hug instead.
Photo 20
After the staff it is the turn of some of the new boys (it would take way to long for everyone, but because our class was in the front we got to do this. We gathered in single file for our turn to hongi (press noses and often shake hands at the same time) with some staff representatives. On a traditional marae you would do this with everyone – but that means there would be 700 people to hongi!!

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