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Map My Waahi

Map My Waahi: discovering our shared heritage

Welcome to the Map My Waahi field trip. This trip is supported by the Ministry of Education/Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga. Logistical support for this field trip is provided by Land Information New Zealand/Toitū te Whenua


In Aotearoa New Zealand, our ancestors all came from another place. Our society is a rich blend of origins, cultures, languages, traditions, religions and foods from all over the world. Early Māori sailed thousands of miles to reach Aotearoa New Zealand. Their routes were preserved in memory or recorded in song. Upon arrival they weaved place names and overland route descriptions into oral histories. These have been passed from generation to generation. Iwi mapping was therefore an oral tradition. The pepeha, for example, is an important form of introduction. It links individuals to their tribal roots and significant landmarks. The forerunner to the Global Positioning System (GPS)!

Join us as we explore the diverse heritage of a classroom, their stories and how they came to Aotearoa New Zealand. Meet with their parents and understand some of the challenges they faced in making this country their home. Your guides will be other students who have been using digital maps to create a record of their origins and the places that support their identity. 

mapping192-introduction from LEARNZ on Vimeo.

Meet Andrew


Travel to Lower Hutt Awakairangi, a city of over 100,000 people and one of four cities that make up the Wellington Pōneke metropolitan area. One quarter of Lower Hutt's people were born overseas, about the same as the national average. Although 95% of its people identify as either European, Māori, Samoan, Indian or Chinese there are significant numbers of Cook Islands Māori, Filipino, and Dutch. On this field trip you visit sites that support the identity of the diverse groups of people who live there. 

Field Trip Plan

    Monday 24 June

    Travel day:
    • Join Andrew and the ambassadors as they fly from Kerikeri to Wellington. During the journey, Andrew takes some photographs and talks about some of the interesting features of the trip.

    Tuesday 25 June

    Day 1 - The Belmont School Story:
    • Hear from Belmont School students about how they created their own Map My Waahi story using Google Tourbuilder and Google Earth.
    • Meet Google Education Programme Manager, John Bailey. John will talk about Google Earth, Streetview and the Voyager stories, and how they are being developed and used in classrooms around the world.
    • Read today's diary about the visit to Belmont School and the meeting with Google expert John Bailey.
    • Watch the videos for Tuesday.
    • Listen to a recording of today's web conference.
    • See what the ambassadors thought about their day.

    Wednesday 26 June

    Day 2 - Family Stories: 
    • Meet the Mayor of Lower Hutt and learn some of the town's history as well as his own Scottish heritage.
    • Visit some Belmont School families in Lower Hutt who will share their origins and family stories.
    • Join us for a very special “Map my Voyage” with Rosanna Price who journeyed to Antarctica just a few weeks ago.
    • Read today's diary as we explore some of the reasons for mapping our waahi.
    • Watch the videos for Wednesday.
    • Listen to a recording of today's web conference.
    • See what the ambassadors got up to today.

    Thursday 27 June

    Day 3 - Iwi Stories: 
    • Join us as we visit Te Kura Māori o Porirua where students will talk with us about the value and meaning of pepeha. The students will also show you how you can use sites like Pepeha.nz to build your own Pepeha. Watch this video clip from Pepeha.nz for a preview.
    • Meet Ministry for Culture and Heritage historian Lynette Townsend - Lynette will share some ways to find more information about your family using online resources.
    • Read today's diary - the final one from this week's field trip.
    • Watch the videos for Thursday.
    • Listen to a recording of today's web conference.
    • Hear from ambassadors on their last day of the field trip.

    What's New

    Check out the new Google Earth scavenger hunt of New Zealand places activity.
    Teachers - watch this video where Duane Wilkins talks with Chris Harwood from the Ministry of Education about how the Map My Waahi field trip aligns with the New Zealand curriculum. She also highlights some Tuia 250 resources that fit within this field trip's themes.