Pre-Register now for the Summer Reading Adventure!

Read books, explore the city, win prizes!

The Summer Reading Adventure for Kids runs from 1 December 2023 – 31 January 2024 for children aged 5-13. Read books; write, draw or film reviews; and complete quests to earn all kinds of awesome goodies — and you’ll still be home in time for tea! Adults and teens can also take part in their own Summer Reading Adventures — visit the Summer Reading page on our website for all the info.

Through the power of books and imagination, help us transform Wellington into a fantasy wonderland this summer!

Starting on the 1st of December, you’ll be able to pick up an Adventurer’s Guide from your local library to get started. But you don’t have to wait! Head on over to our Summer Reading Adventure website to pre-register — you’ll get a sneak preview of the quests and activities you’ll be able to do, and you’ll be ready to get started immediately when the 1st of December rolls around.

Read on to find out more!

Continue reading

Read to Kurī comes to Johnsonville Library!

Even more good news for dog-lovers and book-lovers alike — due to the popularity of this programme at Te Awa-a-Taia | Kilbirnie Library, we will be bringing our Read to Kurī programme to Waitohi | Johnsonville Library for the rest of the term!

Every Monday after school from the 13th of November until the 11th of December, you’ll be able to book in a 15-minute slot to read to our gorgeous therapy dogs Martha, Frankie, Freja and Willow, thanks to our friends at Canine Friends Pet Therapy. Read on to learn more about Read to Kurīand how you can book your session!

Our gorgeous doggos for Read to Kurī at Johnsonville Library. From left: Martha, Freja, Willow, Frankie


What is Read to Kurī?

At Read to Kurī, you will book in for a 15-minute one-on-one reading session with one of our gorgeous doggy pals from Canine Friends Pet Therapy. You will be able to choose a book and curl up somewhere cosy in the library to read with your chosen dog. The dog’s handler will be present at all times.

Read to Kurī aims to help tamariki improve their literacy, self-confidence, and self-esteem in a relaxed, non-judgemental environment. All dogs have been trained and tested for health, safety, and temperament, and many have experience working with young children.

Research shows that therapy dogs:

  • Can increase a child’s relaxation while reading
  • Listen attentively
  • Do not laugh, judge or criticise a child’s reading level
  • Allow children to proceed at their own pace
  • Can be less intimidating to read to than a child’s peers

This programme is perfect for tamariki aged 5+ who would like to practice their reading skills while making a new canine friend at the library. Bookings are essential as spaces are limited.


Meet the Kurī

We are very lucky to have four talented pooches join us for Read to Kurī at Johnsonville Library during the term. Read on to find out a little bit more about each dog!

Kurī 1: Martha

Handler: Anna Prussing

Martha is a ten-year-old collie, with eight brothers and sisters. She’s a very gentle sweetheart!

She’s been the library and reading dog at St Theresa’s in Plimmerton, and a Canine Friend for six years.

Nothing makes her happier than being with children, hugs and snuggles, and hearing them read to her. Her favourite book is The Very Hungry Caterpillar, but she’s happy to hear anything!

Her best friend is a slinky coffee-coloured cat called Charlie who lives with her and bosses her about!

She lives in Whitby with Anna and they both love reading with children.

Anna and Martha will be at Johnsonville Library from 3.15 – 4.30pm every second Monday starting on Monday 13 November.

Book your session with Martha – November 13

Book your session with Martha – November 27

Book your session with Martha – December 11


Kurī 2: Frankie

Handler: Lincoln Hall

Frankie is an SPCA special, who is a terrier mix.

Frankie loves his time at Canine Friends, and particularly getting pats from students at universities. His specialty is having his tummy rubbed by his adoring friends!

Frankie is a sweet and quiet boy, who loves eating treats, tissues and socks. He loves people and other dogs. His best friends are his dog siblings, Harry and Minnie, and his cat siblings, Pango and Pipi.

Lincoln and Frankie will be at Johnsonville Library from 3.15 – 4.30pm every second Monday starting on Monday 13 November.

Book your session with Frankie – November 13

Book your session with Frankie – November 27

Book your session with Frankie – December 11


Kurī 3: Freja

Handler: Dairne Poole

Freja is almost 2 years old, and she is also a Golden Retriever. She is a very smiley dog who is always happy to see new people and become friends.

She is an excellent running companion and loves to go running with her handler Dairne in the hills above their house in Wadestown. She also loves playing with her friend Willow, and going to the beach to play in the surf.

Dairne and Freja will be at Johnsonville Library from 3.15 – 4.30pm every second Monday starting on Monday 13 November.

Book your session with Freja – November 20

Book your session with Freja – December 4


Kurī 4: Willow

Handler: Andrew Poole

Willow is a Golden Retriever and she is 5 years old. She is handler Dairne’s son’s dog – she joined their family when Dairne’s son was just 8 years old in 2018.

She loves pats and cuddles, chasing balls, playing with her buddy, Freja, and food. She is very gentle and kind, however if you’re a cat, she may want to chase you!

Andrew and Willow will be at Johnsonville Library from 3.15 – 4.30pm every second Monday starting on Monday 20 November.

Book your session with Willow – November 20

Book your session with Willow – December 4



Spaces for Read to Kurī are strictly limited, so make sure you register early to guarantee your spot!

Te Vaiaho o te Gagana Tokelau | Tokelau language week!

Mālo ni!

It’s time for Te Vaiaho o te Gagana Tokelau | Tokelau language week 2023! Our theme this year is:

Ke Olatia ko ia Tokelau i tana Fakavae | Tokelau to Prosper Within its Foundation.

Tokelau Language and Culture

The nation is made up of the three atolls (ring-shaped coral islands) Nukunonu, Atafu, and Fakaofo, known as the Union Islands, until 1946 when Tokelau (north-wind) became the official name.

Tokelauans are New Zealand citizens. There are more than 8500 Tokelauan people in New Zealand today – five times the population of the islands themselves (about 1600)! We’re very lucky to have more Tokelauans in Wellington than anywhere else in the world, living and contributing a lot to our shared culture!

Events

Join us at Te Whare Pukapuka o Te Takapū o Patukawenga| Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library for a special Tokelauan Storytime and Fatele Dance on Tuesday, 24 October 2023, 3:30 – 4:30pm

Celebrate Tokelau language and culture with some special guests who will share some stories and some fatele dance. Bring your elders and children and join in the fun!

Listen to a beautiful Tokelau pehe – a song – from Tokelauan-Kiwi singer Olivia Foa’i


Alafapeta | Alphabet

The Tokelau alafapeta is made up of fifteen mataituhi (letters).

There are five vaueli (vowels): A – E – I – O – U

And ten konehane (consonants): F – G – K – L – M – N – P – H – T – V

3 of these consonants are pronounced a bit differently to English though:

F – sounds more like a breathy W, like when you blow out a candle.

G – is pronounced Ng. The Tuvaluan word for “language” – Gagana – is pronounced Nga-nga-na.

H – makes a “Hyuh” sound when placed before the letters A, O or U. The word hau sounds like “hyau”.

Helpful words

Mālō ni  — Hello

E ā mai koe? — How are you?

Ko au e mālohi, Fakafetai — I am well, thank you.

Ko koe te mata mālohi — You look well

Te mānaia o te aho — It’s a beautiful day

Ōmamai tātou hihiva fakataki — Come, let us dance!

Io! — Yes!

Te lelei ō koe — Well done!

Tōfā nī — Goodbye!

Kaokao — Armpit

Learn even more phrases using the Tokelau Language Cards from the Ministry for Pacific Peoples!

Tuhi | Books

We have two NEW 2023 books in Gagana Tokelau by David Riley!

Three of the stories below are bilingual, so you can read them in either English or Tokelau.

librarian holds 4 tokelau books

Here is Ethan a librarian at Newtown holding the new books from David Riley and two other classics.


Lightning boy /Ko te tama ko Uila by David Riley (2023)

Sometimes the least likely person is the one who solves a problem. That’s what happened to Uila the day that danger came to his family. Find out how in Lightning Boy, a bilingual legend from Tokelau.

The pearl shell necklace /Ko te kahoa pā by David Riley (2023)

How much would you do for someone you love? Kalokalo-o-te-la loved Hina so much he gave everything he had for her. Find out how in The Pearl Shell Necklace, a bilingual legend from Tokelau–Back cover.

Havali fakaua ki te fale/ Walking home in the Rain by Feauaʼi Amosa Burgess

Four Tokelauan kids have fun and play pretend in the rain on their way home from school.
Tokelau heroes / Riley, David

Part of David Riley’s beloved Pasifika Heroes series – Tokelau Heroes tells the inspirational stories of achievers who have Tokelauan ancestry. It includes legends like Hina; historical figures such as Ihaia Puka; and contemporary heroes like Opetaia Foa’i (Father of Olivia Foa’i mentioned above).

For more information about Tokelau, you may visit:

Faahi Tapu he Vagahau Niue | Niue Language Week 2023

Fakaalofa lahi atu!

This week, from Sunday 15 October to Saturday 21 October, we are celebrating Faahi Tapu he Vagahau Niue | Niue Language Week 2023.

Our theme this year is:

Fakatūleva e Vagahau Niue mo e Tau Aga Fakamotu ma e Tau Atuhau | Sustain Niue Language and Culture for Future Generations.

Niue Language and Culture

According to the Ministry for Pacific Peoples, “Vagahau Niue has been registered with UNESCO as an endangered language, so one of the challenges is the preservation of Vagahau Niue and Niue culture.”

Niue leaders and community groups are working hard to keep Vagahau Niue / Niue Language and Culture going so that the next generation (your children and your childrens’ children) can learn the unique knowledge of the island, its history, its people and their values.

This is tricky becasue there are only about 1,900 people who live in Niue. Most Niuean people live outside the country, over 30,000 in Aotearoa/New Zealand and about 6,000 in Australia!

Young New Zealand-born Niueans have said that Vagahau Niue and Niue Culture are avenues to stay connected with their parents and grandparents; it is their sense of identity.

For people who aren’t Niuean, you can support by learning about Niue culture and people who have  made some amazing contributions to Aotearoa/ New Zealand.

Events

Join us at Newtown Library for a special Niue Language Week Storytime! We have special guest elder Mailigi Hetutu visiting Newtown Library this year to share some special stories from Niue and some childrens games. This session is most suitable for 4-6 year olds. Fakaalofa lahi atu ku a mutolu oti — everyone is welcome!

To get you excited for more stories in Niuean, head on over to our YouTube channel where you can watch and listen to our librarian Lewis (now the Pasifika Librarian at Porirua Libraries!) read a special bilingual story — Fifine pulotu mo e tofuā | The artist and the whale by David Riley — in English and Vagahau Niue.

This video was recorded as part of our celebrations for Faahi Tapu he Vagahau Niue back in 2021. We would like to thank Lewis and David for allowing us to share this beautiful story with you throughout Niue Language Week — fakaaue lahi, David! Make sure to check out the Reading Warrior website to find more stories of the Pacific from David and his collaborators.


You can find even more events on the official NZ Niue Language Week Facebook page and on the Ministry for Pacific Peoples website.

10 Fun Fast Facts about Niue

  1. Niue is the world’s largest raised coral atoll
  2. It was created 2-3 million years ago
  3. Niue is just one island
  4. It takes around two hours to drive around the entire island
  5. It has some of the clearest waters in the world because no rivers or streams run off into the ocean
  6. There is a prison on the island’s golf course
  7. Niue is one of the last countries in the world to see the sunset
  8. Niue has no traffic lights

Te Kupu Fakafeleveia | Useful Words

Vagahau Niue                      English
Fakaalofa lahi atu               Greetings/Hello
Fakaalofa atu                       Greetings/Hello
Fakaalofa lahi atu ki a mutolu oti              Greetings Everyone
Mutolu kia                            Goodbye – to those who are leaving
Nonofo ā mutolu kia          Goodbye – to those who are staying
Fakamolemole                     Please
Fakaaue Lahi oue tulou     Thank you

Language is a wonderful way to connect with others and celebrate diversity. You can learn even more phrases by using the Niue Language Cards from the Ministry for Pacific Peoples!

Tau tohi | Books

We have many Niue language books in our library collection, and you are most welcome to borrow them today! Here are some of our favourites, but you can also visit this link to find even more children’s books in Vagahau Niuē at your local library.

We are the rock / Riley, David
“In We are the Rock contemporary Niueans, historical and legendary figures tell their stories of focus, expression and achievement.” (Catalogue)

Tau kukukuku ha AkoTau kukukuku ha Ako = Ako’s hugs / Fuemana-Foaʿi, Lisa 

“Ako shows his affection towards his family by giving them hugs, including the family cat and his cuddly toy, Kuku, the fruit bat.” (Catalogue)

Of course you can! = E maeke he taute e koe / Hinge, Karen

“Jeremy is starting at a new school. He’s not too sure about how he will fit in. But the other students make him welcome and every time he thinks he can’t do something they say … “Of course you can!” That is until the day they go to the swimming pool.” (Catalogue)

Tau Matatohi faka-Niue Niue Alphabet with English TranslationTau matatohi Faka-Niue : Niue alphabet with English translation / Ikenasio-Thorpe, Bettina  

A short introduction to the alphabet! In the same series, we also have an introduction to colours and counting numbers!

The woman who was swallowed by a whale : a tale from Niue / Wilton, Briar
“The woman who was swallowed by a whale is a folktale ; Niue : rock of Polynesia is a short factual introduction to the country and culture.” (Catalogue)

Kuaka visits Niue / Peterson,Vanessa
“Uses a story format and the concept of bird migration to introduce places in Niue, food and customs.” (Catalogue)

Tales of Niue nukututaha : in Niuean and English / Feilo, Zora
“A collection of twelve stories in both English and Niuean set on the island if Niue, this is the author’s reinterpretation of myth, legend and storytelling from her native land. Each story is lavishly illustrated by Niuean artist Lange Taufelila.” (Catalogue)

The artist and the whale = Fifine pulotu mo e tafuā : a Niue legend / Riley, David
“Mataginifale is a Niue superhero with a difference. She isn’t known for her super powers, but for her super creativity. One day she had an argument with a whale that tested her thinking skills too.” (Catalogue)

Niuean for kids / Jahri Jah Jah
“Learn to speak words and phrases in Niuean. This book packs in many common words and phrases., including greetings, colours, numbers, body parts, animals and farewells. It is a great resource for anybody wanting to learn some basic words in Niuean. Suitable for ages 1+.” (Catalogue)

Niue stands alone / Tu tokotaha a Niue / tau tala tuai ne talahau e David Riley ; fakaliliu e Mele Nemaia ; tau fakatino mai ia Chad Robertson / Riley, David
“Have you ever done something so embarrassing you just wanted to hide? Fao and Huanaki know how that feels. They once did something embarrassing too. But they found a way to turn it into something good.” (Catalogue)

Coconut delight = Fakafetuiaga fiafia ha ko e Niu / Riley, David
“Some of the sweetest fruits in the world grow in Niue. There’s fua futi (bananas), fua mago (mangoes) and fua loku (pawpaw). But niu (coconut) might be the most important of them all. How did the niu get to Niue? Find out how in Coconut Delight, a bilingual legend from the Rock!” (Catalogue)

That’s it from us today! We hope you enjoy Niue Language Week 2023! Fakaaue lahi oue tulou.

Code Club comes to Te Awe Library!

Did you know that you can learn how to code at your local library?

That’s right! In collaboration with our friends at Code Club Aotearoa, we have been running Code Clubs across Wellington City Libraries since 2017. We’re super excited to announce that a new library is joining the Code Club whānau this term — starting tomorrow, Te Awe Library Code Club will be running on Fridays from 3.45 – 4.45pm during the school term.

How do I sign up for Code Club?

There are still spaces available for Code Club at Te Awe Library, but they’ll fill up quickly, so register here while you can:

Register for Te Awe Library Code Club

We also run Code Club at several other libraries around the city — check out our Event Calendar to find one near you!

What do we do at Code Club?

At Code Club, you will complete progressive coding challenges under the guidance of librarians and other coding experts! Most of our Code Clubs start off by covering projects in Scratch 3.0 (and it’s useful if you already have an account, but we can help you make one if you don’t!), with some groups moving on to cover other coding practices like Python and HTML/CSS (using popular multi-purpose coding platform trinket.io).

Here is an example of a game that you might end up designing in Code Club. Can you make it to the end without being run over by a dodgeball, fried by a laserbeam, or falling through the trapdoor? What other hazards could you imagine building into your game?

Read to Kurī continues at Kilbirnie Library!

Good news for dog-lovers and book-lovers alike — due to popular demand, we will be continuing our Read to Kurī programme at Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library throughout Term 4!

Every Thursday after school from the 19th of October until 14th of December, you’ll be able to book in a 15-minute slot to read to either Zibu or Archie, two gorgeous therapy pups from our friends at Canine Friends Pet Therapy. Read on to learn more about Read to Kurīand how you can book your session!

Our gorgeous doggos for Read to Kurī — Zibu (left) and Archie (right)


What is Read to Kurī?

At Read to Kurī, you will book in for a 15-minute one-on-one reading session with one of our gorgeous doggy pals from Canine Friends Pet Therapy. You will be able to choose a book and curl up somewhere cosy in the library to read with your chosen dog. The dog’s handler will be present at all times.

Read to Kurī aims to help tamariki improve their literacy, self-confidence, and self-esteem in a relaxed, non-judgemental environment. All dogs have been trained and tested for health, safety, and temperament, and many have experience working with young children.

Research shows that therapy dogs:

  • Can increase a child’s relaxation while reading
  • Listen attentively
  • Do not laugh, judge or criticise a child’s reading level
  • Allow children to proceed at their own pace
  • Can be less intimidating to read to than a child’s peers

This programme is perfect for tamariki aged 5+ who would like to practice their reading skills while making a new canine friend at the library. Bookings are essential as spaces are limited.


Meet the Kurī

We are very lucky to have two talented pooches join us for Read to Kurī at Kilbirnie Library during the term. Read on to find out a little bit more about each dog!

Kurī 1: Zibu

Handler: Xanthia Freer

Zibu is a Cavapoochon breed, which is a mix of King Charles Cavalier, Miniature poodle, and Bichon Frisé. Her particular breed is often used in the USA and Australia as a companion animal.

Zibu and her handler, Xanthia, very much enjoy their Canine Friends therapy sessions and specialise in interacting with students at universities and schools, particularly assisting those who may have a fear of canines.

Zibu has a very sweet nature, loves chasing her ball and her frisbee, and is best friends with Xanthia’s male cat, Tigga.

Xanthia and Zibu will be at Kilbirnie Library from 3.15 – 4.30pm every second Thursday starting on Thursday 19 October.

Book your session with Zibu – October 19

Book your session with Zibu – November 2

Book your session with Zibu – November 16

Book your session with Zibu – November 30

Book your session with Zibu – December 14


Kurī 2: Archie

Handler: Penny Griffith

“My name is Archie and I am six years old. I absolutely love people, and especially children!

I am a Schnoodle — my mummy is a Schnauzer and my daddy is a Poodle.

I think I will be very good at listening to children reading me stories… maybe they can even teach me how to read!”

Penny and Archie will be at Kilbirnie Library from 3.15 – 4.30pm every second Thursday starting on Thursday 26 October.

Book your session with Archie – October 26

Book your session with Archie – November 9

Book your session with Archie – November 23

Book your session with Archie – December 7



Spaces for Read to Kurī are strictly limited, so make sure you register early to guarantee your spot!

Macawa ni Vosa Vakaviti | Fijian Language Week 2023

Bula…

… and welcome to Macawa ni Vosa Vakaviti | Fijian Language Week 2023! Fiji is a tropical paradise located in the South Pacific Ocean, known for its stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lush rainforests. The friendly people of Fiji welcome visitors with open arms, and their culture is rich and vibrant.


Fijian Language Week runs from Sunday 8 – Saturday 14 October. Our theme this year is:

Me vakabulabulataki, vakamareqeti, ka vakaqaqacotaki na vosa vakaviti | Nurture, preserve, and sustain the Fijian language

If you’re just starting to learn about Fiji, here are some quick iwiliwili vakasakiti — some fascinating numbers — to get you started:

  • Humans have been living in Fiji for over 3,000 years!
  • There are more than 330 Fijian islands, but you’ll only find people living on about 110 of them.
  • Fiji started forming around 150 million years ago, caused by volcanic activity under the sea!
  • The largest island — Viti Levu — makes up 57% of Fiji’s total land area, and holds three quarters of the whole population.

Let’s celebrate Fijian Language Week by exploring the culture of Fiji, visiting your local library for fantastic resources, and embracing the theme of nurturing, preserving and sustaining the Fijian language.

Kai | Kakana

A plant with green, heart-shaped leaves.

Yaqona, also known as the kava plant. Image: Piper methysticum (leaves) by Forest & Kim Starr on Wikimedia Commons. Licensed under CC BY 3.0 DEED.

As in many Pasifika nations, traditional Fijian foods leans on local resources like fish, coconut, kumara, and taro.

Yaqona — a pepper plant found across many Pacific islands — can be made into a beverage called kava, which adults in Fiji drink at celebrations and ceremonies.

Lovo is a meal cooked underground, much like our hāngī in Aotearoa. It requires a lot of preparation and a variety of ingredients, so it’s usually only made for big events like weddings or festivals. Here’s a rough idea of how it’s laid out:

Image: supplied by author.


Useful Words | Vosa Veivukei

Let’s encourage everyone to learn the Fijian language by using simple words and phrases in your everyday conversations. Here are some examples of everyday words you might use:

Ni sa bula vinaka | Greetings/Hello
Ni sa bula vinaka kece sara | Greetings Everyone
Ni sa moce | Goodbye
Kerekere | Please
Vinaka vakalevu | Thank you
Drau sa vakacava tiko? | How are you?
Au daumaka tiko, vinaka | I am fine, thank you
O cei na yacamu? | What is your name?
Na yacaqu ko | My name is ______
Lutu na niu, lutu ki vuna | The coconut falls close to its roots

Language is a wonderful way to connect with others and celebrate diversity. You can learn even more phrases by using the Fijian Language Cards from the Ministry for Pacific Peoples!

Discover Fiji through books!

Look for books about Fiji’s culture, history, and of course, the Fijian language. You can find some more books in the Fijian language on our catalogue here.

Vunimaqo and me : mango tree collections / Kamali, Daren

“A collection of poems, coupled with images that deepen the words, channelling the many voices and the stories of those who found connections and shelter by the mango tree. The author was born and raised in Suva, Fiji, but is now based in New Zealand. In English with some Fijian words, includes a glossary.” (Adapted from catalogue)

Fijian reference grammar / Schütz, Albert J.
“This book is based on over fifty years of research on the Fijian language–both the standard language and its many dialects. It does not attempt to follow any particular linguistic theory, but in contrast, focuses heavily on describing the language in context. The data that it is based on include material written and spoken by Fijians–ranging from the advice offered by the author’s colleagues in the Fijian (monolingual) Dictionary Project to Fijian-language newspapers and textbooks, to recordings of loanwords and casual conversations, and–most recently–the text and DVD of a recent Fijian play, Lakovi. ” (adapted from Catalogue)

My ocean home Fiji / Casey, Penelope
“My Ocean Home Fiji is a beautiful children’s book that tells the story of Tui and his Fijian friends, who explore the magical world under the sea.” (Catalogue)

Fijian for kids / Jahri Jah Jah
“Learn to speak words and phrases in Fijian. This book packs in many common words and phrases., including greetings, colours, numbers, body parts, animals and farewells. It is a great resource for anybody wanting to learn some basic words in Fijian. Suitable for ages 1+” (Catalogue)

Counting in Fijian / Jahri Jah Jah
“Simple illustrations and text introduce the numbers from 1 to 15 in the Fijian language. Suggested level: junior.” (Catalogue)

Fiji / Sorovi-Vunidilo, Tarisi
“The islands of Fiji are full of rich history and culture. Describes the history, customs, geography, and culture of the people who live there, and provides authentic vocabulary words for an immersive experience. Includes a glossary, index, and bibliography for further reading.” (Catalogue)

Let’s come together to make a difference, one word at a time. Vinaka vakalevu (thank you very much) for joining us in this exciting celebration of Fijian Language Week!

Vaiaso o te Gana Tuvalu | Tuvalu Language Week 2023

Tālofa…

…and welcome to Vaiaso o te Gana Tuvalu | Tuvalu Language Week 2023! Fakafetai — thank you for joining us in celebrating this beautiful Pasifika nation.

Tuvalu Language Week runs from Sunday 1st to Saturday 7th of October 2023. The theme for Tuvalu Language Week this year is:

Fakatumau kae fakaakoi tau gana ke mautu a iloga o ‘ta tuā. | Preserve and embrace your language to safeguard our heritage identities.

It’s important that we support and protect Tuvaluan people and culture, now more than ever, as their homeland faces a very serious threat.

Due to global warming, the 9 islands that make up Tuvalu are being swallowed by the sea, and it’s predicted that they’ll be impossible to live on within 50-100 years. Without a homeland to anchor their way of life, Tuvaluan traditions and culture are at terrible risk of extinction.

But we can all help to keep Tuvalu alive if we take some time to learn and share Tuvaluan language and culture; spread knowledge and raise awareness throughout Aotearoa and beyond.

Food | Kai

An image of pulaka plants growing in a muddy pit.

Image: Pulaka Pit by Luigi Guarino on Flickr, licensed under CC BY 2.0 Deed.

Like all Pasifika nations, Tuvaluan kai draws heavily on their island resources, like coconuts and seafood. The majority of the working population are farmers, and can happily feed themselves with food produced in their own backyards. The most common crop is pulaka — swamp taro — which grows underground, making it less likely to be damaged by strong weather or rising tides.

Fekei is a popular dessert in Tuvalu, made by wrapping a mixture of coconut cream and grated pulaka in the leaves of the pulaka plant.

Helpful Words | Pati Aoga

Hello! — Tālofa!

My name is ___ — Toku igoa ko ___

Good luck! Cheers! Be well! — Manuia!

Have a good day! — Manuia te aso!

Have a good night! — Manuia te pō!

Have a good journey! — Manuia te malaga!

This lady will pay for everything! — A mea katoa e ‘togi nē te fafine tēnei!

My hovercraft is full of eels — Taku hovercraft kō fonu i pusi

Learn even more phrases using the Tuvalu Language Cards from the Ministry for Pacific Peoples!

Books | Tusi

Au e foliki? = Am I small / Winterberg, Phillip
“‘Am I small?’ – Tamia is not sure and keeps asking various animals that she meets on her journey. Eventually she finds the surprising answer…” This book has been translated into Tuvaluan, and is a bilingual story, meaning it has English and Tuvaluan side-by-side. (Adapted from Catalogue)

A librarian is holding three bilingual books in Tuvaluan in front of the Pasifika language display at Newtown Library

Librarian Ethan shows off some of these beautiful bilingual books at Newtown Library!

Bilingual Tuvaluan Stories / Sioni, Alamai Manuella
Alamai Manuella Sioni and illustrator Chad Robertson have put out a fantastic series of 8 bilingual Tuvaluan picture books — a mixture of legends and stories about life in Tuvalu.

The ili of Funafuti = Te ili o Funafuti / Kaveinga, Meli
“Describes the process used by the women of Funafuti (Tuvalu) to make a fan from coconut palms.” (Catalogue)

The gifts of Pai and Vau = Meaalofa a Pai mo Vau / Riley, David
“Pai and Vau are Nanumea superheroes who created beautiful things in our world. One day a stranger named Tefolaha came to their island. “This is now my island,” he declared and challenged them to a contest. What kind of contest did he dream up? What would Pai and Vau do if they lost?” (Catalogue)

Visit our catalogue to find more books in Gana Tuvalu!

Te Ara Pukapuka at Waihinahina Park Newlands

Earlier this year, some of you might have visited Te Ara Pukapuka, whether at Kilbirnie Park during the Winter, Khandallah Park during Autumn, or at Churchill Park in Seatoun over the Summer.

The Spring instalment of Te Ara Pukapuka (The Book Pathway) has now arrived at Waihinahina Park in Newlands, complete with a new pukapuka for tamariki to read as they play and explore! Follow each page from one to the next as you wander through the park, taking in the gorgeous sights and listening to the calls of tūī and pīwakawaka as you do.

Did you know that there are over 20 names for the fantail in different dialects of te reo Māori? Some of our librarians grew up calling them pīwakawaka, while others called them pīwaiwakatīraireka, or even kōtuitui. You can explore some of the different names using Te Aka Māori Dictionary!

Pages of a book sit on a post, near a bench, overlooking the Wellington harbour

Read a wonderful pukapuka while you take in the beautiful views!


We have partnered with our friends in the Wellington City Parks, Sport & Recreation team, Newlands and Tawa Community Centres, and publisher Scholastic New Zealand to bring you a fabulous bilingual story — Flit the Fantail and the Flying Flop / Ko Flit, Te Tīrairaka te Rerenga i Hē, written and illustrated by Kat Quin, and translated into te reo Māori by Ngaere Roberts. By the time you reach the end of the trail, you will have found the last page of the pukapuka!

We are grateful to be able to share such a beautiful story about native manu at this joyous time of year! Te Ara Pukapuka begins near the end of Ladbrooke Drive, Newlands (find the entrance on Google Maps). The path will take you past some stunning views of the coast and the quarry. Be aware that Waihinahina Park is a popular dog-walking area, so be prepared to meet some kurī on your travels!

There used to be a landfill at this location, which means that there is a chance you may spot some waste that has worked its way to the surface while you explore. Please don’t remove this, but think of it as a reminder that we should all do our best to recycle and be mindful to keep as much waste out of our landfills as possible.

Pages of a story sit on a post, hills in background.

Te Ara Pukapuka awaits intrepid explorers!


Ngā mihi to the fabulous team at Scholastic for their support! Flit the Fantail and the Flying Flop / Ko Flit, Te Tīrairaka te Rerenga i Hē is available to borrow from our libraries, and to buy from all good bookstores.

Read to Kurī at Kilbirnie Library!

We are extremely excited to announce the arrival of a brand new programme for our libraries — Read to KurīThanks to our friends at Canine Friends Pet Therapy, every Thursday afternoon during the upcoming school holidays, some very special therapy dogs from Canine Friends Pet Therapy will be joining us at Kilbirnie Library. You’ll be able to book in a time to come and meet our very good doggo friends and read to them aloud.

Three dogs look at the camera -- on the left is Zibu, a small white Cavapoochon; in the middle is Topaz, a brown, grey and white-furred Keeshond; and on the right is Archie, a golden Schnoodle.

Just look at those gorgeous doggos! (From left: Zibu, Topaz, and Archie)

What is Read to Kurī?

At Read to Kurī, you will book in for a 15-minute one-on-one reading session with one of our gorgeous doggy pals from Canine Friends Pet Therapy. You will be able to choose a book and curl up somewhere cosy in the library to read with your chosen dog. The dog’s handler will be present at all times.

Read to Kurī aims to help tamariki improve their literacy, self-confidence, and self-esteem in a relaxed, non-judgemental environment. All dogs have been trained and tested for health, safety, and temperament, and many have experience working with young children.

Research shows that therapy dogs:

  • Can increase a child’s relaxation while reading
  • Listen attentively
  • Do not laugh, judge or criticise a child’s reading level
  • Allow children to proceed at their own pace
  • Can be less intimidating to read to than a child’s peers

This programme is perfect for tamariki aged 5+ who would like to practice their reading skills while making a new canine friend at the library. Bookings are essential as spaces are limited.


Meet the Kurī

We are very lucky to have three talented pooches join us for Read to Kurī at Kilbirnie Library during the holidays. Read on to find out a little bit more about each dog!

Kurī 1: Topaz

Topaz, a long-haired grey, brown and white Keeshond.Handler: Suze Hocking

Topaz is a nine-year-old Keeshond (Dutch Barge Dog). She’s a lot smaller than you’d think under all that fur!

She loves treats and swimming at the beach, and always brings home lots of sand!

She’s gentle and patient and loves hanging out with people — that’s why dogs of this breed are often known as ‘Velcro dogs’ — they just love to stick to people!

Topaz and her handler, Suze, have been with Canine Friends for about six months. Before that, Topaz spent some time as a support dog for Wellington Free Ambulance.

Suze and Topaz will be at Kilbirnie Library from 12.00 – 1.00pm on Thursday 28 September.

Book your session with Topaz – September 28

Kurī 2: Zibu

Handler: Xanthia Free

Zibu is a Cavapoochon breed, which is a mix of King Charles Cavalier, Miniature poodle, and Bichon Frisé. Her particular breed is often used in the USA and Australia as a companion animal.

Zibu and her handler, Xanthia, very much enjoy their Canine Friends therapy sessions and specialise in interacting with students at universities and schools, particularly assisting those who may have a fear of canines.

Zibu has a very sweet nature, loves chasing her ball and her frisbee, and is best friends with Xanthia’s male cat, Tigga.

Xanthia and Zibu will be at Kilbirnie Library from 12.00 – 1.00pm on Thursday 28 September and Thursday 5 October.

Book your session with Zibu – September 28

Book your session with Zibu – October 5

Kurī 3: Archie

Handler: Penny Griffith

“My name is Archie and I am six years old. I absolutely love people, and especially children!

I am a Schnoodle — my mummy is a Schnauzer and my daddy is a Poodle.

I think I will be very good at listening to children reading me stories… maybe they can even teach me how to read!”

Penny and Archie will be at Kilbirnie Library from 12.00 – 1.00pm on Thursday 5 October.

Book your session with Archie – October 5


Spaces for Read to Kurī are strictly limited, so make sure you register early to guarantee your spot!