Activity: What do we already know about Matariki?

Activate prior knowledge about Matariki.


On a large piece of butcher paper, a whiteboard, or on a shareable online brainstorm platform such as Miro, Mural, or Padlet, ask ākonga to brainstorm in groups everything that they already know about Matariki.

Consider such questions as:

  • What do we think we already know about Matariki?

  • When do we think Matariki takes place?

  • Why is Matariki important?

  • What words would you use to describe the Matariki celebration?

  • What is Matariki all about?


Discuss everyone’s ideas and collate the brainstorm into one central sheet. Leave this shared brainstorm somewhere where you can refer to it through your Matariki inquiry. As you continue to learn about Matariki, you may like to add a key to the brainstorm, and update the gathered ideas by shading:

  • green: the pieces of prior knowledge that turn out to be accurate

  • orange: the pieces of prior knowledge that had some accuracy to them, and

  • red: any pieces of prior knowledge that, as you learn more, prove to be inaccurate.

Discuss together:

  • What makes a credible source of information?

  • Where can we go and what can we do to learn more about Matariki?

  • When we learn something new, what can we do to make sure that what we have learnt is true and accurate?


Ask ākonga to write a journal entry about what Matariki means to them, or how they have experienced Matariki in the past. At the end of Matariki celebrations this year, return to this initial journal entry and reflect on what has changed and what may have expanded.