Jack-up leads to study of Maori tradition
Jack Goodeve’s quest to learn more about Maori art launched a school trip to the museum.
The nine-year-old and 54 of his classmates, from Frankley School, visited Puke Ariki to listen to taonga Maori curator and carver Glen Skipper about traditional Maori art and the tools used to create the pieces.
Jack was working on his school’s Te Ara Tiki inquiry, exploring Maori customs and cultures, when he read of PhD candidate Andy Brown, of Hawera, in the Taranaki Daily News.
Brown’s research involves looking at stone adzes and fish hooks in Puke Ariki’s heritage collection to see how Maori culture evolved through time.
Jack emailed the reporter who wrote the story about Brown, outlining his desire to speak to him and requested his contact details.
He then wrote to Brown to see if he would be able to speak to the students but unfortunately, Brown was in Christchurch.
So Jack sought help from the museum and his efforts paid off.
Skipper spoke to the students on how to create their poupou to reflect their history, heritage and personal story.
Poupou were traditionally carved by males and told the story of the meeting house, the tribe and its ancestry.
Jack’s poupou had a rugby ball to show his love for the sport and a koru on each shoulder signified strength.
His second poupou sported a cricket bat under its arm as Jack was also a cricket fan.
Teacher Brendon Anderson said the museum trip was a result of Jack’s enthusiasm and curiosity to learn more about the subject.
Traditional art: Jack Goodeve, 9, learns the art of Maori carving from Puke Ariki taonga Maori curator Glen Skipper.