Topic: Te Reo Māori

Nuri whānau nurture te reo in the home

By Mere McLean
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

The Nuri whānau of Te Arawa are part of the reo evolution movement with more than four generations speaking te reo Māori.  They hope to nurture and hold fast to the language taught within their home.

The Māori language is cherished in this whānau.

Third generation speaker Roihana Nuri says, “Our language has been fostered through the generations.”

Second generation speaker Ranea Nuri says, “In my generation, our language is of home.  It's a language that has been passed down to us.”

Waimarino Nuri, who is a native speaker, has fostered the Māori language within her family. 

“The language is sweet when it has a home feel.  I remember when my grandmother spoke to me, it was so good.”

Waimarino says the language she has passed onto her children and grandchildren is evolving.

Roihana says, “The language I learned at the school is different from the language I was taught at home.  I'm sometimes at odds and sometimes don't understand the small words because within my family from my father, grandmother, aunty we have a generational language.”

Statistics NZ indicates the proportion of Māori able to hold an everyday conversation in the Māori language has decreased. 

However, this whānau are holding fast to their language.

Fourth generation speaker Waimanea Nuri says, “We must speak Māori every day.  We must change mindsets and speak it all the time.”