Year 9 camp at Matahiwi Marae was all about making new friends and sharing activities and experiences in an inclusive environment.
I would like to thank everyone involved in making the camp a success and involving themselves in the team building activities.
We all left a little of ourselves at the marae by leaving a koha of painted stones and I hope that everyone was able to take some special memories away from this beginning of year camp.
Camp Matahiwi was a great experience.
Starting at Woodford, everyone was a stranger to me but after going to the marae strangers became friends.
We did a lot of great activities – art, dance, drama and a talent show at the end of the day. For each of these activities we were put into groups with different girls, so we could get to know everyone. The food was good and filling, we all slept in the wharanui together which was a bit squishy but otherwise it was good. I really enjoyed listening about the history of the marae from Matua Tom. We also went to Ema Scott’s house which was really cool as she showed us what she did for her job. She carves stones and sculptures which are really fascinating and there was a story behind each sculpture she made.
Camp Matahiwi was meant to be a trip where we got to meet the rest of the girls in our year group; I definitely met heaps of girls in just two days. Overall I thought camp was awesome and I had a really great time.
The start of camp was amazing – being welcomed by a beautiful powhiri. It was a fantastic experience and the marae is more than what first meets the eye; underneath there is so much history about ancestors. We were taught about Maui and all the carvings and how the marae came to be. It was a great learning experience and some of my best friendships were made there. It really helped getting to know everyone by not staying in the same group and you could see some people you thought were so shy come out of their shells. I think it’s a very smart idea and helps us to know our peers who we are going to be with for the next five years. My favourite part would have been the outdoors and having some time with your friends outside having a laugh (or two).
In a few words the Marae trip was eventful, friendly and hyperactive. Now you may wonder why I have chosen these words to describe camp. Eventful – during the trip, we took part in many activities such as drama games, walks to the river, stone painting, sculpture viewing, and the list goes on. Friendly – the trip was an amazing opportunity to make new friends, which I and many others did. Hyperactive – needless to say, when everyone slept in the same room next to all their new friends, the excitement proved too much.
There were many instances for our year group to bond on the Marae trip. The activities we participated in meant that we were usually mixed up and put with people we didn’t know. I met a lot of new people I hadn’t really known before; it was an excellent chance to make new friends which I am sure many of us did.
… We arrived at the marae and were welcomed with a beautiful powhiri followed by a series of speeches and gift offering. Some kai was soon offered to everyone and once we had finished there were activities led by the teachers including drama, music and a game which was chosen by the gappies.
The afternoon was filled with practise for our camp talent show.
When the sun rose above the night sky it shone through the windows of the marae waking us all, though we still had quite a while to sleep. We then had breakfast and walked to a house in Te Awanga which was full of sculptures and crystal cut stone. The walk back was long and tiring but we stopped for a swim in the lagoon which was refreshing.
The trip had come to an end with some girls happy, some sad but overall I’m sure we all made at least one new friend, or learned something about someone they did not know.
Camp was so much fun because it meant I could get to know all of the girls in my year that I didn’t already know but I also learned lots about the marae. My favourite part of camp was going to Ema Scott’s beautiful house, and getting to find out how she lives and what she does. My dad has one of her pieces at his work so when I got there I could see how it was made which was very cool. I also had heaps of fun learning about the waka and how you can go on adventures all around the world.
Poem by Maddy, Sophie and Elise
M – Music blaring through the ue boom
A – Amusement throughout the whole day.
T – Talent performed in the hilarious Talent Show
A – A pack of sardines crammed into the Marae.
H – Happy faces as we made new friends
I – Interesting speeches crammed with knowledge.
W – Water rushing in between our legs walking through the river
I – Imaging as we meditated before sleeping.
This was a great experience for new girls (like myself) to meet other girls in a fun environment. To me I wouldn’t change anything about the marae visit – even having to stay up till 11 o’ clock! We did a lot of things from painting rocks to going to Ema Scott’s house as well as learning about the culture of sleeping on a marae. On the first day we did heaps of activities like rock painting, dancing and acting. I love that sort of thing. We also did some very interesting skits and much more. I really enjoyed the Marae and I met a lot of people through the trip.
When I arrived at school I was rushed onto the bus (because I was a bit late) and that was that. We were off and heading towards Matahiwi Marae. When we got there we were welcomed by a beautiful powhiri led by Matua Tom and his wife. They were very nice people and they made our stay even more special. Matua Tom talked to us about the history of Matahiwi Marae. He also told us what each of the carvings meant and how they guide and guided the Maori people in their lives. This gave me a better insight into how the very first New Zealanders lived and what they believed in. I also learnt what happens during a powhiri. This was the highlight of the camp for me. I hope the girls in future who will be going to Matahiwi Marae enjoy the experience as much as I did.