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He mahi hāngi - Making a hāngi

Achievement objective

5.3 Communicate about past habits and routines.

Learning intentions

Students can:

  • initiate and sustain short conversations
  • list the steps to making a hāngi, using passive tense.


At the end of this lesson, students can:

PānuiPānui - Reading: Make use of context and familiar language to work out relationships between things, events, and ideas.

MātakitakiMātakitaki - Viewing: Understand and respond to information and ideas encountered in a variety of visual texts.

KōreroKōrero - Speaking: Initiate and sustain short conversations.

Lesson Sequence

Discuss with the students the process of laying down a hāngi. Ask them what materials are needed, what tasks need to be undertaken, and how long it takes.

Have the students create a vocabulary list for laying a hāngi, for example:

kari dig
kōhatu rock
wahie firewood
tahu light (a fire)
mīti meat
kūmara sweet potato
rīwai potato

In pairs at the computer, have the students perform the tasks in the interactive ‘Me mahi hāngī tātou.

When most students have played the interactive, discuss making hāngi; this time asking them to use the Māori phrases they have learned, for example:

Me mahi hāngi tātou. Let’s make a hāngi.
Kua karia he rua. The hole has been dug.
Ka tahuna ngā wahie. The wood is lit.
E tunua ana ngā kai o te hāngi. The food in the hāngi is cooking.
Ka hikitia te hāngi. The hāngi is lifted.

Language to use

heihei chicken
paukena pumpkin
poaka pork
kāpeti cabbage
pūrini pudding


Some of the vocabulary in this hāngi interactive comes from science (pūtaiao) vocabulary, which assists the students to use te reo Māori in another curriculum area.

Discuss tikanga associated with kai and hospitality at the marae.

Further learning

Lay a hāngi for a school event or fundraising event.

Invite whānau members to the class to discuss kai Māori, hāngi, and the important role of kai in terms of manaakitanga.

Other resources

  • Te Pou Taki Kōrero. (2007). He Kohikohinga 48. Te Whanganui-a Tara. (Features a hāngi, other stories on kai Māori and instructions for cooking kūmara, in simple language suitable for this level).
  • Te Pou Taki Kōrero. (2003). Hāngi Board Book. Te Whanganui-a Tara. (Follows the hāngi process through to the long wait for the delicious contents to be revealed). Learning Media item 10698.
  • Hāngi interactive

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