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Pēpi Pēnapēna series

Nau mai, haere mai e te whānau and come with us on our journey to reclaim, reframe and realise the power and potential of tūpuna parenting.  Our tūpuna pre-colonial times were gentle and respectful parents and whānau. They can help us be great parents to our tamariki too. For this series, Talking Matters partnered with Liz Harte (Ngati Porou, Ngāpuhi) of Pepi Penapena - Cherish Babies to reflect on how channelling our tūpuna can create language-rich environments for pēpi and tamariki today. 

Tūpuna Parenting: Pepeha 

Nau mai, haere mai e te whānau. Pepeha is a way of identifying ourselves, where we are from/whakapapa to and where we belong. It’s never too early to share this knowledge with pēpi and we can start with sharing what we know. 

Tūpuna Parenting: Mana and Tapu 

Our tūpuna Māori never hit our pēpi, never talked down to them or used harsh words. In fact, they did the opposite. Pēpi were seen as tapu, protected and sacred. This means pēpi were talked with in ways that affirmed their mana/prestige. When children behaved in ways that didn’t match our values, it was an opportunity to teach, not punish. The words we choose to share with pēpi matter. 

Tūpuna Parenting: Pūrākau

Pūrākau is often translated as myths and legends, but they are so much more! Pūrakau are our history woven into stories to ensure the knowledge lives on. We can bring our pūrākau and whakapapa into our everyday lives with pēpi. They are listening and learning.

Tūpuna Parenting: Waiata oriori 

Oriori are a type of waiata or chant written specifically for pēpi to share information about who they are, where they’re from and our hopes and dreams for them. Anyone can write an oriori for a special pēpi in their life and you can use the language you know. You could even add verses in te reo Māori as you learn alongside pēpi. 


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