Matariki and Visual Art Fun

Students across the school have been learning sketching skills with me, using my special supply of fancy sketching pencils.

Entitled, ‘taking your pencil for a walk,’ students across year levels have explored  shape and line. They have taken risks and used their pencils in different ways. We described some of these as teaching our pencil to whisper, talk and shout to show different artistic effects. 

Using these skills, we researched Zentangles, especially the works of Johanna Basford. This is the artist who made mindful Adult Colouring popular. Using a variety of creative patterns, shapes and pencil lines, we used the spaces for Zentangle to practise our sketching skills. 





As part of the Matariki Wharenui Ngā Tae rotations, some students got to learn about Patupaiarehe. Patupaiarehe are fairy-like creatures that are popular in Māori myths and legends. We read a book called ‘The Stolen Stars of Matariki’ by Miriama Kamo, and learned just how mischievous Patupaiarehe could be. According to the story, Patupaiarehe live in the misty forest. They hide in dark spaces. They are afraid of sunlight so don’t come out during the day. They are sneaky and steal shiny things, to use for magic purposes like making clothing.  Matariki stars make very sparkly clothing for Patupaiarehe. 

After researching Patupaiarehe and  learning how to pronounce the word correctly, the students discovered that the fairies were afraid of food, cooking and fire. Using these things, the people in the story scared them away.

Students created their own versions of Patupaiarehe. 



Room 2 enjoyed the story so much that they wrote and performed their own Patupairehe plays. They were proud of their efforts and shared them with each other. 

I don’t really like writing, but writing a play felt different. It was a challenge working by myself. It was fun. Jake (Room 2) 

Working with Riley was cool. We worked well together to write an awesome play. Riley had cool ideas that I wouldn’t have thought of. Louie (Room 2)

Working with Isobel was interesting. I had to be patient writing with her. I felt shy when I was performing my play in front of the class. My teacher felt proud of me.  Tegan. (Room 2) 

Patupaiarehe was new for me. I want to know more about them and I wonder if they are in other myths and legends. Riley (Room 2) 

Keywords: Visual Arts, Māori Myths and Legends, Sketching, Zentangles

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