Take a tour of our school via drone.
Interested to learn more about our School? See our enrolment section here.
Interested to learn more about our School? See our enrolment section here.
24 Jan 2019
Matahui School welcomes Mary Woods as its new principal in 2019 after a community farewell to principal Max Muller in December.
Mary brings a strong skillset and vast experience to the school in science, Future Problem Solving, IT and mindfulness. Her substantial knowledge of student diversity, curriculum experience and inquiry is expected to add value to a successful learning environment for children ranging from Years 1 to 8.
Mary is married to Jim and they have two daughters — Patricia and Catherine, and three grandchildren — Phoebe, Arley and Zoe. Mary and Jim have recently moved from Tauranga to Pahoia and are looking forward to settling into the community.
Students at Matahui have a diverse range of backgrounds, strengths and learning styles. The school’s philosophy of providing a solid learning environment that allows all children to foster creativity, critical thinking and leadership, is what initially drew Mary to the school.
Children at Matahui are encouraged and supported to collaborate with each other during a range of activities during class time, while enjoying ‘education outside of the classroom’.
Education outside of the classroom is one of the driving characters of the school where students work collaboratively while being challenged to reach their personal potential. Learning through play classes enjoy frequent camps and field trips, and involvement in various community activities and the school has a native bush area, fondly known as ‘The Huts’.
School starts at Matahui on Tuesday, January 29.
What great fun Puriri had at Redwood Valley Farm Park Camp last week. We fed the pigs and chickens, played games, wrote a diary, had fun on an awesome waterslide and rode the river on tubes. Thank you to our parent helpers for their great support and fantastic meals.
At Matahui School we regard our relationship with parents and caregivers as a partnership. Communicating with them is important, hence the conversations we have with them and the report we write about the progress their children are making as learners are significant, but the most powerful form of reporting we undertake at the school is our end of year Student-Led Conferences.
The Student-Led Conference is a formal method of reporting where the students have the opportunity to discuss, present and demonstrate their understanding of what they have learned throughout the year, sharing the progress they have made with their family.
“Enabling” students so that we give them ownership and a genuine sense of responsibility for their learning so that they can discuss their work, reflect on and review their goals, and share their progress with their parents/caregivers is highly effective in giving the students a “voice.”
The student’s role becomes one of a leader/facilitator and throughout all stages of a Student-Led Conference, preparation, implementation and evaluation, the student is the key person.
Through involving and engaging parents/caregivers directly in how the students at Matahui School approach learning for understanding, the Student-Led Conference becomes an ideal opportunity to celebrate a child’s achievements as they present their learning portfolios.
The portfolios (which look different at each Year level), produced by the students, provide them with an opportunity to; identify strengths and learning challenges; demonstrate skills; discuss key and significant ideas and concepts; develop tasks for adults to undertake during the conference; collect evidence over time to illustrate progress during their learning journey; demonstrate self-reflection/self-assessment; verbalise why they have chosen to showcase specific pieces in their collection; and where appropriate, demonstrate what they have learned.
Our parents and caregivers truly become partners in learning when the students lead a conference. When students have a meaningful audience in addition to the classroom teacher, their learning takes on increased importance and relevance.
Listening to the child’s voice as they retrace their educational journey becomes much more meaningful and memorable than the words drafted in a written report. For us at Matahui School these conferences are the highlight of the academic year.
For the auction at the Mexican Fiesta we made a collaborative piece of art. We found out how Piet Mondrian used colour and geometric design to make his abstract art and used a heart shape to make our pieces. We all had one of our hearts included in the final art piece.
We were very busy this term getting ready for our school production (The Point). Everyone had a speaking part, so we had lines to learn as well as songs. We helped to make our ‘rock cape’ costumes by sewing our hoods using a sewing machine. We also had to make up a dance. We loved performing for the audience and are looking forward to the next production in 2 years time.
We have been learning about different forms of poetry and would like to share some of our Haiku and Cinquains with you.
We had fun blowing bubbles and then drawing them. Enjoy our wonderful pictures.
It is often said that… THERE IS NO “I” IN TEAM….
Two weeks ago, Leo Holley, Henrietta Davenport, Bridget McGirr and Hugo Bruning proudly represented
Matahui School at the first round of the EPRO8 challenge, which this year, was held in Katikati. They had
every reason to feel proud, as we are of their achievement because they won the event. An outstanding team
achievement and so I thought I would interview the students to see if the old adage is in fact true. Read on.
What made you all want to be of this team? It seemed like it would be fun, especially as you get the
chance to invent and experiment with making things like robots and other mechanical devices.
How did the team prepare for the challenge? (initial burst of haughty laughter). Actually we didn’t really
prepare which didn’t worry us – except Bridget. We probably should have because we would have been able
to save time because we would have had a better understanding of how to wire things up. We also wasted
time constructing some framing as we didn’t recognise the importance of using triangles in the construction
So given you didn’t prepare as well as you might have, why do you think you were so successful in
the end? We worked so well as a team. Everyone was good at something different so we were able to
divide up tasks and shared the responsibility of completing each challenge we faced. We listened to each
other without criticising. We collaborated and co-operated, probably better than some of the other teams.
When you learned you had won what emotions did you experience? A whole range – happiness;
excitement; surprise and delight.
Where will this success take you next? We will be heading to the semi-finals and if we do well there then
it will be on to the finals.
What do you think you learned from this experience? We need to do some preparation this time so that
we are more organised. We found out that we need to spend a little more time planning before we launch
into creating and making. And, we learned the value of effective teamwork.
So, it would seem that there is no “I in team, certainly not if you are in a Year 7/8 Matahui School EPRO8
FOOTNOTE: According to the judge who scored the EPRO8 Challenge, the scores reached by the top
eight teams at the Katikati event was so high, that they would have scored in the top three at any of the
other events held thus far. WOW!
Books are large part of our family life, especially as we have grandchildren who adore them. The
fact is that their grandmother is constantly on the lookout for new titles that will challenge and
stimulate the children.
One of our most recent acquisitions is a book written by Kobi Yamada and illustrated by Mae
Besom called, “WHAT DO YOU DO WITH A CHANCE?” The dedication at that beginning of
the book for Shale and Ever reads; “When something extraordinary shows up in your life, I hope
you see it for what it is……a gift.”
Over the past week something extraordinary happened to Aroha and Cameron in Year 2. Both did
something extraordinary with chances they were given.
Aroha had the chance to see “The Project” on television and decided that the challenge set by
Jesse, one of the hosts, for schools to reduce or eliminate access to sugary drinks, was one she
could manage to do something about. Rather than let this chance slip, she resolved to inform
parents and caregivers about the health risks in providing children with any sugary drinks. I hope
you all read her letter.
Cameron’s family found one of the “Tauranga Rocks.” These rocks have been hand- painted and
hidden in secret places across the city. At home the family shared a discussion about hand painted
rocks and this got Cam thinking. He took the chance to meet with me to discuss the idea that
students at Matahui School should paint rocks and hide them, so that when we have events like
VIP Day, our visitors could find the rocks and take them home as a reminder of their visit. Cam is
pictured with samples of the rocks he painted. Whilst we may not hide them, we will certainly offer
them to visitors as a very personal koha.
How fantastic that we have students who demonstrate the confidence, initiative and wherewithal
to do something with a chance.
Max’s recommended read for the month:
“WHAT DO YOU WITH A CHANCE?” Kobi Yamada
Compendium Inc 2017
What a wonderful term Team Kauri, the Year Seven and Eight students have had at Matahui School.
The students have been learning to build and learn within a team and advance their ability as leaders. This has been achieved through an amazing array of outdoor activities including two camps, and skill building activities such as swimming, a deep-water confidence day and kayak skill development at Waimarino.
We have studied of the life of William Shakespeare and written a short biography. Following this we traveled with the Year Five and Six students to Auckland to see ‘A Comedy of Errors’ at the Pop-up Globe Theatre.
Other E.O.T.C. experiences have included our infamous boat day and a whole school beach education day.
In the classroom we have focused our mathematics on number and algebra. There are several budding mathematicians! We have buddy read a book called ‘A race to the pole’, a chance for our accomplished readers to share with and support their peers. This book was also part of our inquiry this term which has focused on the motivation to discover and explore. The high standard of presentations that concluded the inquiry are well worth visiting the classroom to see.