Steam rolled

Hello every one, or should I say Kia ora?

A week ago I was asked about a goal for professional development, and I mentioned that I feel embarrassed when my Maori language pronunciation truly sucks. And that man on One weather isn’t helping with it at all. It could be because the vowels are all different in Wales and my brain sees a Maori word now and goes on cross purposes while a block of concrete gets stuck in my mouth and it comes out very, very, wrong. We’ve lost our only Maori speaker at work, and although I have no intention whatsoever to replace them, a bit more education wouldn’t go amiss for my clients.

This was immediately taken as a good idea to learn some Te Reo Maori. So yesterday at work, I had a cancellation and a space in my calendar, so I high tailed it to the nearest Te Wānanga o Aotearoa campus to enquire about very introductory courses. Well little did I know, it all started last week and I missed the enrolment date. The lady was very nice and made a couple of quick phone calls, then asked if I was free Thursday nights, and voila (see getting confused already) I found myself in full immersion learning at 6:00pm!

So what did I do that to myself for? Am I not busy enough working full time? Perhaps I miss learning? Perhaps I’ve woken as a changing child who likes self punishment? OMG I was so terrified of what I’d just agreed to!

Relax. It was great.

I had to speak Maori whether I wanted to or not, and answer questions online, all done via zoom with real people and real class mates. I was a bit like a stunned possum in the headlights, but I’m sure I’ll get more comfortable with it as it goes along. I missed week one, so I have a bit to catch up on, which I’ll do once I get the link for the online learning part. The Tutor joked about not worrying about getting anything wrong, because the best way to learn is just to try, and we have possibly been pronouncing words wrong for twenty or thirty years. Er, try fifty something! I kept quiet about that one.

A component is a visit to a local Marae and four workshop full time days both done at the weekend. Now that will be very interesting as I have not been invited to a Marae since I was a student way back in the 1980’s. I wonder if it has changed?

I believe in life long learning, and challenging myself to extend my knowledge just outside of my comfort zone. I think I have extended mine past Jupiter for this one, but I can only try. And I’m back to my three steps every day towards success. Tahi, rua, toru….

So if you want to have a go the campus has an online course for beginners that you work on in your own time called: Papa Reo, New Zealand Certificate in Te Reo. You have to meet criteria , but if you do can work online. Hmm maybe I should have chosen this one! Link at the end of the blog. I’m doing the next stage up, because if I’m making the effort, it’s nice to get a credit at the end of it, that is if I make it that far!

More soon – Sally



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