‘Talofa’ to Samoa
Whitby schoolkids had a good excuse to spend their evenings on the internet last week – they were sharing their knowledge of Samoan language.
The Discovery School intermediate class gained considerable online interest in their Samoan Language Week module, with their website gaining 355 hits.
Teacher Simon Kenny says the class knew very little about Samoa initially, but a Google search led to a full-blown online celebration of Samoan language, with the class creating interactive lessons in numbers, greetings and days of the week.
Student Bronson Aiona, 12, is among the mere 5 per cent of the 420-strong Discovery School who have a Pacific Island background. He taught his fellow students phrases, updated the class Facebook page, and helped with pronunciation.
His favourite part of the week? ‘‘Meeting the mayor.’’
Porirua Mayor Nick Leggett was welcomed to the class last Thursday with a Samoan lei and a hearty ‘‘Talofa!’’ A quarter of Porirua’s population is Pacific, Mr Leggett says, and it’s terrific to see Pacific languages being celebrated.
Samoa smiles: Bronson Aiona welcomes Porirua Mayor Nick Leggett to Discovery School with a Samoan lei.