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A Whano rāua ko Pekapeka

Nā Tangihōro Fitzgerald

Whano meets a rather strange looking creature. A friendship develops that grows stronger and stronger as the story unfolds.

'A Whano rāua ko Pekapeka' story by Tangihōro Fitzgerald, with page numbers from He Kohikohinga 35.

Possible achievement objectives:

English in the curriculum

Strands: Written language, Reading
Level: 3/4

Achievement objectives

Students will:

  • discuss and convey meanings in written texts, exploring relevant experiences and other points of view.

Essential skills for assessment

Students will consistently:

  • identify, and process information from a range of sources (Information)
  • use imagination and logic to discover and apply solutions based on personal experiences (Problem solving)
  • recognise group strengths as the most appropriate way of accomplishing a range of shared tasks (Work and study).

Other curriculum areas:

Science: Making sense of the living world

Essential skills for assessment

Students will:

  • understand the general functions of the main parts of bats.

Activities to support the achievement objectives

1. Teacher directed

Preparation: Introduce the session by telling the class that New Zealand has its own native bat, which is called the short-tailed bat, and that the only other bat in New Zealand is the long-tailed breed from Australia.


  • Ask if they have heard the saying 'blind as a bat'.
  • Tell them that it isn't true, but the saying was probably first used when it was found that bats send out squeaking noises to find their way around.
  • Ask the students if they can name one animal, bird or insect and describe how it gets its food.

2. Teacher directed

First read the poem to the class, then all read it aloud together.


  • How would you describe the kind of relationship Whano and Tahanga have?
  • Why is Tahanga a hairless bat?
  • What special feature does Auau's breed of bats have?
  • Why do bats exercise their wings?
  • What other movements do bats make?

3. Teacher directed

Which sense: Bats use their hearing senses to see with.

Look at each object on the chart and tick which sense or senses are used to identify it.

Object See Hear Touch Smell Taste

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