Academic journal article New Zealand Physical Educator

Exploring Hand Games

Academic journal article New Zealand Physical Educator

Exploring Hand Games

Article excerpt

Te Kete lpurangi (TKI) and Physical Education New Zealand (PENZ) have put together a comprehensive educational resource on Te Ao Kori (TAK). This fantastic resource for teachers includes the following:

* The Whakapapa of TAK

* How to plan and link TAK to the curriculum

* Tikanga guidelines to consider when teaching TAK

* Detailed examples of TAK learning experiences

* Teaching methods for TAK.

The activities that make up these learning experiences cover nine topics. Each issue of the Physical Educator will focus on one from each of the following categories:

1. Hand games Takaro a-ringa

2. Stick games Ti rakau

3. String games Whai

4. Games and pastimes Nga mahi a te rehia

5. Poi activities Nga mahi poi

6. Music and movement Te kori me te puoro

7. Voice and movement Te reo me te nekehanga

8. Our natural environment Te taiao

9. Reflecting on te ao kori.

Hand games Takaro a-ringa


Hand games play an integral part in the development of physical attributes such as hand and eye coordination. Traditionally, the arts of pleasure were attributed to Raukatauri and Raukatamea. Attributing games and pastimes to legendary characters allowed Maori to explain the origins of these amusements. The period when recreational games and pastimes were mostly played was just after the crops were harvested and stored. During this harvest festival, Maori gave themselves over to Nga mahi a te rehia, a te harikoa - the arts of pleasure and of joyfulness.

Activity: Hei tama tu tama

Suggested approach

Hei Tama Tu Tama, like many early games, was designed to encourage mental dexterity. Even though the winning was important, it was the way in which competitors won that was the focus. The cheeky cajoling, the smile and grimace to put your opponent off were all part of the game. The pedagogy is ako, in which games are always supportive.

This game is played using the upper body, arms, and hands, ensuring a balanced position. …

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