MAOR 124 - Maori Science: Te Putaiao Maori

This course examines pūtaiao and mātauranga Māori (Māori knowledge and science) in both traditional and contemporary contexts. It examines the differences and similarities between Western and Māori ways of knowing.

Using Google Sky to map Māori astronomy

Students research the Māori lore on two randomly selected celestial bodies, and plot their findings in Google Sky, populating an astro-map with Māori narratives on the night sky.

Mapping flora and fauna on campus

After some training on how to recognise medicinal trees and plants, students use a large scale orienteering map to locate native flora on campus.

Mapping Karaka in Pōneke

Karaka trees are a living reminder of the Māori tradition of harvesting and eating Karaka berries. In this mapping project students formed groups to identify 10-20 Karaka trees within the Wellington area. These field observations of Karaka were then mapped and described using Google Earth.  Through these projects, students learned the value of Karaka and the importance of correct species identification for traditional Māori communities. Students’ work was compiled into a class map showing a rough distribution of Karaka in Pōneke (Wellington), connecting to work done by the Department of Conservation with Dr Bruce McFadgen.