Learning kupu / e ako ana i ngā kupu

The biggest part of learning te reo Māori is building your vocabulary.

I always carry one of these word flip books with me. A few minutes waiting for a bus, or waiting for the kettle to boil, and you can go through some of the words you have accumulated.

   

(I buy my flip books from Daiso on Queen Street – you can get four for $3)

I also like to learn my kupu hōu playing memory games with friends – I make them with the same cards, or similar, from daiso. Making the same or creating my flip books, is part of learning the new words.

Accumulating the words is something else though.

Depending on what’s easiest for you, I recommend creating a storehouse of new words. If you work on a computer a lot, set up a word doc and add them there. If you prefer paper, carry around a little notebook.

As for finding the new words – there are a bunch of tools out there like ‘te kupu o te ra’ that sends you a new word every day, either via email or on facebook. Or you can join one of the great te reo Māori facebook pages that will post stuff up i te reo māori and you can pull out words you don’t know yet.

But the key thing is to always be building that vocab. You can learn all the sentence structures you like, but without those words, you can’t do anything with those structures.

So here are some useful tools

Websites and Links

Te kupu o te rā – https://kupu.maori.nz/

Some facebook pages to follow:
https://www.facebook.com/kupu.maori.nz/?ref=br_rs
https://www.facebook.com/tewikiotereomaori/?ref=br_rs
https://www.facebook.com/letslearnmaori/?ref=br_rs
https://www.facebook.com/tetaurawhiri/?ref=br_rs

There are some ‘high frequency word’ lists at these sites:
http://tereomaori.tki.org.nz/Teacher-tools/Te-Whakaipurangi-Rauemi/High-frequency-word-lists
https://www.memrise.com/course/39806/top-1000-maori-words-2/

You can use those sites to get started with your own list of kupu hōu. Go through the lists and find the words you don’t already know.
This book can help too “A Māori Word a Day” https://www.penguin.co.nz/books/a-maori-word-a-day-9780143772132 There are 6 copies at Auckland Libraries.

You can also get started with a list of kupu hōu that I have been adding to https://koreropaki.wordpress.com/kupu-hou/

Learning kīwaha

Like individual kupu, you can drop these phrases into your daily speech.
A good translation of kīwaha is idioms, so they’re just common sayings.
RNZ is doing a wonderful series on kīwaha for te wiki o te reo.

You can learn these just like new kupu!

https://youtu.be/TZ30J9kocrQ

Some of my favourite kīwaha:

Kāore e kore – without a doubt
E rua, e rua – same same
He pai ake te mate ururoa i te mate wheke. – don’t give up (lit. It is better to die like a hammerhead shark than an octopus)
Tū whitia te hopo – face your fears (especially those anxieties about learning and speaking te reo!)

 

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Nominal Sentences

Also referred to as verbless sentences

Maori does not have a verb ‘to be,’ so this means that sentences like ‘I am a student’ look a bit different in Maori.
I’ve never had this properly covered in a classroom so I’ve had to learn out of books how this works (I’ve since used these kinds of sentences a lot in assessed work, so I know I’ve got it now!)
There are two really important words for nominal phrases: he & ko. Neither of these words have an absolute equivalent in English, however, generally speaking, ‘he’ is the indefinite article, like ‘a’ in English. But it is not necessarily singular like it is in English, so it can be used when referring to one, or some.
Ko is more like the definite article ‘the’, in that it gives slight emphasis, but otherwise functions similarly to ‘to be’ (but it is not an equivalent to that verb!)

Let’s look at some actual sentences:

He [object/oranga] [definitive article (this, that, those etc)]
He pukapuka tēnei – This is a book
He pahikara ērā – Those are bicycles
The ‘he’ is acting like a verb – but it is not a verb! The sentences in its literal meaning is ‘a book this’, ‘some bicycles those’

If you want to describe a quality the sentence is in two parts
He [quality/āhua] [definitive article] [object/oranga]
He roa tēnei pukapuka – this book is long (literally ‘long this book’)
He teitei ērā rākau – those trees are tall (literally ‘tall those trees’)

If you want to describe things in general, you leave out the specificity of ‘this’ or ‘those’
He [quality/āhua] te [object/oranga]
He tere te motopaika – Motorbikes are fast
He reka te rare – Lollies are sweet
The use of ‘te’, though seemingly singular (ngā being the plural form of ‘the’) refers to a class of things. In saying that though, you might also be sying ‘The motorbike is fast’ or ‘the lolly is sweet’ – it’s contextual

Ko is emphatic, which means that it gives emphasis on the word that follows it.
Ko tēnei te pukapukaThis is the book.
Ko te pukapuka tēnei – This is the book.

If you want to describe particular people, you will need the particle ‘a’, which has absolutely no equivalent in English.
‘a’ is used before the name of a person or before most pronouns
He [quality/āhua] a [name]
He tauira a Makere – Makere is a student (literally ‘a student Makere’)
He kaiako a rātou – They are teachers (literally ‘teachers they’)

The ‘a’ is not used before singular pronouns
He tauira ahau – I am a student
He mōhio koe – You are knowledgeable
He pirihimana ia – She is a policeman

When you want to use ‘ko’ to create emphasis when speaking about a person the particle ‘a’ is not used when ‘ko’ precedes the name
Ko te tauira a Pania – Pania is a student.
Ko Pania te tauiraPania is a student

As you can see, when placed directly after ‘ko’ the ‘a’ is not needed.
Ko is not used with adjectives, so if you want to describe an object as ‘big’ you would use a sentence beginning with ‘he’.

Have a go at translating the following:

Whakapākehātia:

  1. He pene rākau tēnei
  2. He nui tērā motokā
  3. He kawa te rēmana
  4. He karaka te ngeru
  5. He karu ērā
  6. He kaha a Rewi
  7. He mauiui ia
  8. Ko te whare whero tēnei
  9. Ko Wiremu te kaikōrero
  10. He makariri te wai

Whakamāoritia:

  1. The room is big
  2. Anaru is a teacher
  3. Hemi is a doctor
  4. This soldier is Hinemoa
  5. That pen is blue
  6. I am an author
  7. He is beautiful
  8. They are old
  9. This drink is sweet
  10. Hone is a lawyer

Use maoridictionary.co.nz to help you. Any word you look up, add to your vocab list to learn over the next week.

For practicing together at home, use these questions:
He aha tēnei? – What is this?    He aha ēnei? – What are these?
He aha tērā? What is that?        He aha ērā? – What are those?

To reply, replace the ‘aha’ with the name of the object:
He aha ēnei? He tōkena ēnei. – What are these? These are socks.

Post your questions below. And feel free to post your answers to the above questions too. I’ll try to respond to let you know you’re on the right track!

Tērā te kōrero tū whitia te hopo.

I ako au i tētahi kīwaha i te akomanga i tēnei raumati. I te tīmata o taua karaehe, i uaua ki te tū i te kōrero Māori mō te mihi. I āwangawanga au ki te kōrero i te reo Māori, engari, e kī ana tēnei kīwaha e pā ana ki taua āwangawanga i te kupu ‘hopo’.

He aha au i uruwehi ai? He whakamā nōku.

Mehemea e tū ana au ki taku hopo, he kaikōrero māia au, ā, e whakawhanaketia ana taku reo

Ka ako tonu ahau i te reo Māori mō te hemo tonu atu!

 

kīwaha
Tū whitia te hopo – face your fears

kupu hōu
kīwaha – saying, idiom, colloquialism
āwangawanga – worry, anxious
uruwehi – fearful, scared
whakawhanake -growth, development

Te mutunga wiki

A tērā wiki, ka whakanui mātou ki taku huritau. Ka eke ahau ki te toru tekau mā rua tau. A te Rāhoroi, ka haere ōku hoa katoa ki tāku pāti. A te toru karaka te wā i te ahiahi, ka whakareri tōku hoa rangatira i te ‘punch’ ki waipiro. Nō māua e noho ana ai i Edinburgh, ka hangahia ngā inu cocktails e a ia i te pā o Electric Circus.

A te hāwhe pāhi o te toru karaka, tae mai ai ngā manuhiri ki te ātea i te muri o tōu māua whare. Ko ētahi o ōku hoa he kaituhi, ko ētahi o ōku hoa he ringatoi. Hui katoa, he whaingōhia rawa rātou katoa.

A te Rātapu, haere ai mātou ko Betty, ko Michele ki Whanganui me Te Whanganui-a-tara kia rangahau ai e pā ana ki te ringatoi. Ko Emily Harris te ingoa o te ringatoi. E noho ana ngā whakahekenga o Emily Harris i Whanganui. E noho ana ngā peitatanga i te Wharepukapuka o Turnbull i Whanganui-a-tara. A te Rāhina, ka tīmata mātou i te mahi.

 Kupu hōu

huritau – birthday / anniversary
whakareri – to prepare, or to make ready
kaituhi – author / writer
ringatoi – artist
rangahau – research
peitatanga – paintings

He kōrero mō taku ohinga

Ko ngā tungāne e rua me kotahi teina aku. Engari, i tupu aku tungāne i te wāhi rerekē.  I tupu māua ko aku teina i te whāma. Ko Hannah te ingoa o taku teina. He hipi, he kau, he nanenane tau māua mōkai engari he hoa rātou hoki.

Ka maumahara au i te nanenane pai ki ahau. Ko Jethro tana ingoa. He karu kikorangi ana. He māwhatu te huruhuru. Nō te tau rua mano tekau mā tahi i mate ai. He tau tekau mā waru ana.

I tākaro māua ko Hannah i te pātiki ki ngā kararehe. I hangahia ngā keke poharu e māua. I whāngaia ngā pōaka e māua, engari, kāore a Hannah i kai i ngā pōaka. I rūkahu tōu māua Nan ki a ia, i kī a Nan “I hoko au ēnei tōtiti i te toa.” Ka kai ai a Hannah i ngā tōtiti.

Ko te Titanic ko te kiriata pai ki a Hannah. He rite tonu tana kōrero mō te Titanic. I hōhā au i a ia. I kī taku kamupūtu i a ia ki ngā hātaretare.

I pānuia ngā pukapuka maha e ahau i te wā katoa. Ko Sheryl Jordan ko te kaituhi ki ahau. I pānui au i roto i te whare, i roto i te rūma kaukau, i roto i te pahi. I pānui au e hīkoi ana au ki te kura. I pānui au ki te nanenane i roto i te whare witi.

I titohia ngā kōrero paki e tōu māua Nan. I noho tapapahu mātou i roto i tana moenga i te ata, ā i inu i ngā kapu tī, ā, i whakaronga ki ngā pakiwaitara e pā ana ki ngā kōtiro me āu rāua haerenga.

 

Kupu hōu

whāma – farm
nanenane – goat
māwhatu – curly
kararehe – animal
rūkahu – tell lies
tōtiti – sausage
hātaretare – snail

Whainga o ngā tau e tū mai nei

I oti te tāhū paerua i ahau i tērā tau. I tēnei tau, ko tōku whainga ka whakakawenatahia aku atikara me aku rotarota i roto i ngā pukapuka pitopito kōrero.

E tuhituhia ana te pukapuka rotarota e au. Ka oti te pukapuka i ahau i tēnei tau. Me te aha, e tūmanako ana au ka whakakawenatahia te pukapuka.

I tērā wiki, i hangaia te rangitaki e au e pā ana ki te reo Māori. Ka parakitihi au ki te tuhituhi i te reo Māori, ia rā, ia rā. Ko taku tūmanako, ka āwhinatia ngā akonga e taku rangitaki. Ka pānui rātou ki te rangitaki, ā, ka ako i ngā kupu hōu.

Ā ngā tau e tū mai nei, ka pīrangi au ki te mahi i te kairangi ki Kotarana. He aha au i haere ai ki Kōtarana? Nā te mea, ka hoki atu au ki korā e noho ana me taku whaea, ā, e pīrangi ana au ki te ako i te reo Scots Gaidhlig

 

Kupu hōu

tāhū paerua – Masters degree
whakakawenata – publish, print, bind
atikara – article (written)
pukapuka pitopito kōrero – journal
tohu kairangi – doctorate, Phd

Taku huarahi ako i te reo Māori

I te tau rua mano tekau mā whā, i tīmata taku haerenga ki te ako i te reo Māori. I tērā wā, i ako māua ko taku hoa rangatira i te reo ki Te Noho Kotahitanga o Wairaka ki Unitec. I uaua ki te tū i te kōrero Māori mō te mihi. Ināianei, kāore taku hoa rangatira i te haere ki te karaehe i te reo Māori, engari ka parakitihi tonu māua ki ngā kupu hōu.

He aha au i hiahia ai ki te ako i te reo Māori? He ātaahua nō te reo! ā, nā te mea ka pānuia e au ngā mātātuhi ki Aotearoa. E maha ngā kupu i te reo Māori ka panuia i puta noa ngā mātātuhi ki Aotearoa.

Ka ako ai i ngā karaehe ki te Whare Wananga o Waipapa. Nō Te Tai Tokerau, Waikato, Te Tai Rāwhiti ōku kaiako.

E whakawhanaketia ana taku reo, me taku māia.

Ko te tuhituhi i te reo Māori, te mahi pai ki ahau.  I whakamāoritia e au ngā rotarota i tuhia e Cilla McQueen.

Ka haere au ki ngā karaehe maha. A tērā tau ka tīmata ahau i te karaehe tuihono pea.

 

Kupu hōu

māia – confidence
tuihono – online
rotarota – poetry
mātātuhi – written literature