Kea Crossing IMG1389 IMG9913 IMG7815 Wakefield School from Lookout 3 IMG4764 Picture from Waimea Weekly

STAND Values Get a Make-Over



Kia ora, greetings!




What’s happening on our mural wall?  Earlier this year we investigated Maori translations for our STAND Values.  You already know what they are in English...


Show respect


Take responsibility


Aim high


Never give up


Do the right thing



...and you can see from the photo that we’ve translated Aim high as Whaia te iti kahurangi, and Do the right thing as Tikanga.  You can see the remaining translations at the top of this newsletter.



You may be guessing that translating from one language to another is not always straightforward.  For example, you might think whaia te iti kahurangi, looks like a mouthful just to say ‘aim high’, and you’d be right.  What we’ve done is put the values into a Maori context rather than trying to simply find a convenient word.  In this case whaia te iti kahurangi is part of proverb or whakatauiki.  The full whakatauiki is:


"Whaia te iti kahurangi, ki te tuohu koe me he maunga teitei"


"Seek that which is most precious, if you should bow let it be to a lofty mountain"


which we think is a pretty awesome way of saying ‘aim high’.


Similarly tikanga refers to the ‘the way we do things around here’; our methods, our rules, our way of being correct or right.


The full picture will be up soon and we will enjoy teaching our children the STAND values in te reo Maori.  We are planning a small ceremony to bless and welcome the Maori STAND values as part of our celebration of Matariki - the Maori New Year - on Friday 15 June at lunchtime.  We hope you will join us for that.


Two Friendly Reminders

1.  The drop-off zone in the carpark is becoming congested again on these cold and wet days when more parents are using cars to bring children to school.  Please, please, please use it as a pull-through space, not a parking area.  We understand it is a bit more congested than usual with the tradies’ vehicles but they have promised the building work will be finished by the end of next week so be patient and, hey, tikanga - Do the right thing!


2.  Food choices in school lunchboxes.  Please refresh your memory about what foods and drinks we do, and don’t, allow at school.  We’ve had a few problems with children bringing lollies and sugary drinks to school lately.  See the information in this newsletter or find it under School Lunches on the A-Z on our school website;


And finally…


I couldn’t resist snapping our lovely five year olds and Mrs D. taking their study of snails onto the court this morning.  Come to our assembly this Friday afternoon to find out more!




Have a beaut week.




Peter Verstappen 





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Wakefield School 175th Celebration

Here is a link to the Registration Form for the Wakefield School 175th Anniversary Celebration to take place on Friday 9th November and Saturday 10th November 2018. Please feel free to share this with your friends and family and anyone you consider may be interested. Please be aware that there are limited tickets available for some events, so early registration will ensure that you don't miss out.

Event Registration

Event Timing: Friday 9th & Saturday 10th November 2018
Event Address: Edward Street, Wakefield School
Contact us on 03 541 8332 or email

Welcome to the Wakefield School 175th Anniversary Celebration. A varied weekend is planned for your pleasure and enjoyment. Please fill in the registration form below so we know what you plan on attending. Any references to Wakefield School below also relate to Eighty-Eight Valley School, Pigeon Valley School, Spring Grove School, Totara Bush Household School, Te Arowhenua Household School, Wai-iti School (formerly Upper Wakefield) and Foxhill School unless otherwise stated. 

PLEASE COMPLETE ONE FORM FOR EACH PERSON REGISTERING - An attending partner does not have to do a full registration.

Please click on the following link to complete the registration form Fill out form



Here’s What We Mean by ‘Student-Led Learning’


Jordan, who is six years old, was recently appointed to our Student Council as a representative of Matai Kereru team.  Last week our Council meeting clashed with scooter training for Jordan.  He came to the office to tell me but I was out, so what did Jordan do?  He wrote me this letter:



To mistir vstn

Sore I cant go to the

Shooht cousool

Becose I

Got scooti

Chraning at



from Jordan.


I love this letter, for two reasons.  First, it is a beautiful expression of a child learning to write; look at how he has made sense of the words ‘student council’, you can hear Jordan picking out the sounds in his mind. 


Second, it is a beautiful expression of student-led learning.  You might ask, ‘what’s he learning?’ but consider this.  Here’s Jordan, 6, as a thinker: he knows he has an obligation to the Student Council, he sees he cannot fulfil it, he comes to tell me, that doesn’t work, he decides he needs to write to me so he creates this letter and brings it to the office.  This is even more impressive because Jordan doesn’t know much about the Student Council yet, he’s only attended one meeting, but he knows he has some sort of obligation to it.  Here’s Jordan as a communicator: if he can’t tell me in person, he’ll slave over this letter to get the message to me.  Here’s Jordan as a planner: he’s thinking ahead and balancing his commitments.  Okay, Jordan will have had some prompts from his teacher, but he’s taken up the challenge and look at what he’s achieved. 


I value the opportunities children have to be leaders at school through the Student Council, committees, monitors and other roles.  Their work in these roles contributes to the smooth running of the school, but as well as leading others they provide real occasions for children to lead themselves, to become masters of their own learning.  And that’s what a democratic curriculum looks like.


Have a good week,




Peter Verstappen