Pakiwaitara: 3 kete of knowledge

Whānau can introduce pakiwaitara to tamariki. They could look online for videos or go to the local library and read them to their tamariki.

The pakiwaitara in Te Māhuri, page 34, is about Tāne Mahuta and his search for the 3 kete of knowledge. Tāne ignores the protest from Whiro that he, as , should be the one to make the journey in search of the baskets of knowledge. But keen for exploration, the adventurous Tāne endures the demanding journey to the summit of all the heavens and successfully returns with ngā kete e toru. From then on, he is known as Tāne-te-wānanga – Tāne, bringer of knowledge from the sky.

This legend reminds us of the variety of skills and knowledge that make up our world. It affirms the value of learning and gaining understanding about many different areas in life. And it highlights that to master skills or develop knowledge takes effort and persistence.

Encourage whānau to explore pakiwaitara with their tamariki. Maybe their tamariki would enjoy sitting with them and listening to the story and watching the action.

You might also suggest a visit to the local library. There will be a section on Māori legends, and this story of the 3 baskets of knowledge has been published in a number of books. A talk with a librarian might be helpful too.

If the whānau seems shy about going to the library or asking for help, you could talk with them beforehand and help them think of some suitable questions.

Remind them that the librarian’s job is to help people.

Look at the information in the group programme. There are also strategies to use to enhance the telling in the Pakiwaitara workshop.

You could share the ‘kete of knowledge’ story with the whānau and talk with them about it.

Conversation ideas

Where do you go for knowledge or information?
Who are the people you ask for information?
What brochures or pamphlets have been useful?
What handy phone numbers do you have on a list?
What do you see in the future about learning new things?
What courses are you interested in?
What about your tamariki? Who will they learn from?
How will your whānau support your children’s learning?
What sort of things do you think you might do to help them?
Have you shared any legends with your tamariki?

Helpful resources for whānau