Tai Tamariki Kindergarten opened in Te Papa in early February 2010. It’s a unique and wonderful thing for a kindergarten to be located within a museum like Te Papa. The children and staff at Tai Tamariki are frequent visitors to the museum exhibitions, making use of all the learning opportunities and inspiration the museum provides. Kahu Ora Living Cloaks has been popular with the children. After visiting the exhibition they designed and made their own kakahu.
Over the next two weeks we are displaying three of these wonderful kakahu in the Weavers’ Studio space. The first kakahu made by Maia Waldegrave, aged 4 is now on display. She was inspired by the dog skin cloak in the exhibition (complete with the ears and tails of several dogs).
It’s a real joy that this is happening – it was a highlight of my week! To mark this special occasion we organised an opening blessing, lead by our Tainui resident kaumatua and kuia, Taki and Ratau Turner.
We talk a lot about museums as learning environments – places where we can change peoples hearts, minds and lives. I think the Tai Tamariki children’s kakahu are delightful examples of this in action.