The story of “In the Beginning” retold Peter Gossage is one of the stories we read in acknowledgement of our Bi-cultural heritage. Some of the children have embraced the story and we have extended it by integrating it into our art area with props of each of the 6 brothers. Tu – the God of man and war is often a popular one with the boys, Tane – the Guardian of the Forest is strong and kind. I suspect they identify with Tu’s power and Tane’s strength.
|Tane - the Guardian of the Forest|
Amani illustrates Tangaroa, Guardian of the Sea (above) “I gonna do her hair, she pretty.”
Finn illustrates Haumia, Guardian of wild and uncultivated foods, a peaceful character in this story.
Lucas has chosen to prepare and make a lovely screen print of Haumia
During mat time has been an opportunity to revisit and retell the story, and give children the chance to share their understanding and participate in discussion about which character they identify with and why.
Francesca – “I like Tane ‘cause he’s nice but I don’t like Tu ‘cause he wanted to kill his parents”!
Ruby C – “I like him because he’s kind” (Rongo)
Tane, Guardian of the Forest, insects and birds, played by Thomas
Tu, God of Man & War played by Finlay
Tawhirimatea, God of the wind and storms played by Francesca
Tangaroa, Guardian of the Sea, played by Ava
Haumia, Guardian spirit of wild and uncultivated foods, played by Ethan
Rongo, God of Peace and Agriculture, played by Ruby
All the children of Rangi (the Sky Father) and Papatuanuku (the Earth Mother) are in the darkness, not being able to stretch and grow. After a lot of discussion between the brothers...
... finally Tane stretches his legs and pushes Rangi away from Papatuanuku...
...with a little help from all the other children...
....the light streamed in!
We have linked this story to the theory of Creation through a lovely book by Nick Butterworth and Mick Inkpen – “Wonderful Earth” – this gave us another perspective to consider.
These wonderful stories enable our children to participate, to look at our environment through another lens, a cultural perspective; it gives meaning, it helps children to make connections with nature and hopefully a respect for nature and all its living things.
Who knows where this passage will take us….
As we continue to review our new outdoor environment, it will be interesting to see how our children find ways to make connections between this story and our own environment and use their knowledge to making meaning in their own context during their learning experiences.
Documented by Karen and Leanne