Matahui School is a small rural independent primary school located on Matahui Road, in the beautiful Western Bay of Plenty. The school is situated 10 minutes south of Katikati and 20 minutes north of Tauranga.

Matahui School recognises that everyone has individual strengths and learns in different ways. We keep our class sizes small and incorporate a broad range of learning styles in our day-to-day curricular activities. Our small class sizes and individualised learning style allows students to develop an understanding of their own particular strengths and get the most out of their learning. Matahui School’s unique formula for teaching delivers sound academic results and develops confident, competent, motivated and empathetic young people.

Our Ethos

Matahui School understands and embraces diversity. Everyone is welcomed and included at the school. Matahui School’s core values are an integral part of our students daily learning, and our group discussions, artwork, songs, role-play and student presentations at assemblies all serve to reinforce our students’ understanding of our values and ethos. This results in a connected student community where our older students act as role models to our younger students, helping them to develop a strong sense of what is right and appropriate in our school community.  

"How empowering for my son to know that someone has his back, whenever he needs it, without having to go to a teacher."

Ruth Butter - Matahui School parent

“When my son had a disagreement with one of his classmates, he went to find his big buddy in the playground. His big buddy helped the younger ones to talk things through. ‘Wow’, I thought – ‘How empowering for my son to know that someone has his back, whenever he needs it, without having to go to a teacher; and how empowering for his big buddy, as an 11 year old, to know that he is able to bring people together to negotiate a peaceful solution.’ And when my son is older – yes, he will do the same. How do I know? Because that’s just how things work at Matahui.” 

Our Students

Students at Matahui School come from diverse backgrounds. Each child brings their own contribution to our student community through their interests, personality and character. 

Matahui is a judgement-free zone where differences are valued and appreciated. As a result, our school grounds feel safe and welcoming. Students across all ages and all classes interact and play with each other on a daily basis, from organising themselves for basketball shooting practice or digging in the school’s archaeological dig site, to trading bush taonga and building huts in the school’s native bush area. Matahui School aims to create an environment where kids accept each other, where no child plays alone and to help mould children, alongside their parents and guardians, into kind human beings. 

Our Curriculum and Learning

Learning at Matahui School takes place in many shapes and forms. Children are all different, hence it makes sense that children also learn in many different ways. At Matahui School we understand this, and have built a school ethos that acknowledges and values the different strengths of each student. Instead of asking Is this child smart?, we ask, How is this child smart?. We don’t try to fit students into a box at Matahui School – instead we celebrate individual brilliance!

Our progressive curriculum involves an interdisciplinary approach where core subjects are integrated across disciplines to create relevant meaning for the student. Students are able to connect their world with their learning through engaging in hands-on activities. Our teachers guide students in their understanding of key concepts while encouraging each student to think creatively, collaborate with their peers and teacher, and experiment and take risks.

Our Community

Through strong supportive relationships between home and school, we acknowledge and respect the significant connection between the student, the family and the teacher. Our teachers use Seesaw as an online platform for student, teacher and parent engagement, where students are empowered and encouraged to create and ‘share what they know’ in real time. Our weekly assemblies are also a key outlet for our students to share their learning, as well as an opportunity to bring our community together to celebrate our students’ successes.

Our families are actively encouraged to participate in the life of the school through sharing skills, talents, expertise and experience. Our families are also a core part of many of our EOTC activities and our students are inspired and enthused by hearing stories and knowledge shared in this way.

Families get to know each other by attending our weekly assemblies, sausage sizzles, VIP days, fundraising events, working bees and class get-togethers. Come for a visit to experience this for yourself; or to see regular updates from the school community follow our Facebook page 

The school is governed by a strong, pro-active Board of Trustees who appreciate ‘giving back’.

Our Environment

At Matahui School our learning environment extends beyond the traditional classroom, by using the natural environment and the wealth of learning opportunities available within our local area. 

Our school grounds include a much-loved native bush area where students build huts, develop their entrepreneurial skills by trading ‘bush taonga’ or find wildlife. Our students also enjoy our archaeological dig site, sports fields, edible gardens, sand pits and outdoor music areas. Our environment provides a myriad of ways in which learning through play becomes an extension of the classroom and an integral element of how our students make sense of the world around them. Immersed in this inviting and diverse setting, our students, create, investigate, explore, innovate and communicate whilst having fun.

Find out more about how we learn at Matahui School.