My favourite bird in the whole world is the huia.(Big call)
From her white tipped blacky- purple metallic tail feathers to her long slender curved ivory beak. A beauty she must have been to watch in our ngahere. Teaming up with her male,the couple would work together using each others skills to probe and forage for difficult- to- get kai.
“Nāu te rourou, nāku te rourou…”
You can imagine my absolute joy when my librarian/kaiako friend Kristin showed me the book “12 Huia Birds” a beautifully written and illustrated book on the demise of the huia.
I quickly flicked through the book and found the amazing illustrations haunting and mysterious. So intrigued by it that I raced to the nearest place I could purchase it.(Impulsive? Yes but worth it.)
Here is a blurb about the kaituhituhi -Julian Stokoe and the ringatoi Stacy Eyles.
The illustrations and text really go well together. My friend used it with her Year 1’s. They loved it. It could definitely be read to and utilised by Year 7 & 8’s.
The package gets better and better. It is available as an app with games, huia facts and ideas on conservation/ kaitiakitanga. This resource would be awesome to begin a kaitiakitanga inquiry topic.
But the best thing,besides the app being free, the story has a te reo Māori version read by George Henare.
If you would like some free downloadable resources and teachers notes, here is the webpage.
I had often wondered why we never learnt anything about this bird at school. In actual fact it wasn’t until I left school that I found out it was extinct. I am so happy our ākonga will be able to have a cool interactive way of engaging with an extinct manu māori. (manu māori=native bird).
As Julian says , the huia live on in pictures and products, street names and cafe’s and now in this book and app.
When I left my last school, the lovely Kaurilands I was fortunate to receive a beautiful painting by a local ringatoi Tracey Henderson. Now I have a painting and a book to bring my favourite bird to life.