Encouraging whānau to hold and carry pēpi close.

He tāonga te tamaiti – every child is a treasure.

(Te Pihinga 1, page 26)

Heart to heart

Look at Whakatipu, Te Pihinga 1, page 8 with whānau and talk about the image and the messages. Engage them in a conversation about carrying pēpi ‘heart to heart’.

Encourage their korero with some of these questions.

  • What do you think the māmā is thinking or feeling in this picture?
  • What’s going on in this picture?
  • Have you tried something like this?
  • How has your pēpi reacted?
  • Have they calmed after being held like this?
  • Can you imagine what it would be like being that baby?
  • Do you think you’d feel treasured?

Alternatively you might look at the baby frieze frame ‘Tell me you love me – Kōrero mai, e aroha ana koe ki ahau.’ Both pictures convey similar feelings.

  • What do you think pēpi could hear before birth?
  • Do you think it may be comforting for pēpi to hear their mother's heartbeat?

Helping the brain to develop

Read 'Te hinengaro mīharo' on page 9, especially the paragraph ‘Just how we hold pēpi, talk to them, look into their eyes, and take care of them all help their brain develop.’

This is an example of how what we will do naturally with babies is so often exactly what they need for their well-being and optimal brain development. This is an example of how science has caught up with what whānau have been doing for thousands of years.

On pages 5-6, whānau describe more about holding pēpi gently and firmly and keeping them calm. These pages encourage whānau to become familiar with the cues pēpi gives to let them know what they need.

How does this relate to Tākai resources?

Baby wall frieze – Kōrero mai, e aroha ana koe ki ahau – Tell me you love me

Six things children need – Te hanga ao tōtika, ao haumaru – A structured and secure world

Helpful resources for whānau