Vaiaso o te Gana Tuvalu | Tuvalu Language Week 2023


…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!

Uike Lea Faka-Tonga 2023 | Tonga Language Week 2023

Mālō e lelei kaungāme’a, and welcome to Uike Lea Faka-Tonga 2023 | Tonga Language Week 2023! The Tongan language is spoken by nearly 190,000 people around the world — including about 100,000 across the 45 inhabited islands of Tonga, and over 35,000 here in Aotearoa! Tongan people are a very important part of our whānau in Aotearoa, with over 82,000 people of Tongan descent living here, nearly 3,300 of whom live here in Wellington. (Source: 2018 Census)

This year, the theme for Uike Lea Faka-Tonga is:

‘E tu’uloa ‘a e Lea faka-Tonga ‘o ka lea-aki ‘i ‘api, siasi (lotu), mo e nofo-‘a-kāinga | The Tongan Language will be sustainable if used at home, church and in the wider community

Help us celebrate this special time for the community by learning more about the unique culture, language and history of Tonga and the Tongan people through the books and other resources below!

Celebrating the Life of Emeli Sione

A photo of Emeli Sione wearing a floral headdress, holding the English and Tongan versions of her book 'A New Dawn.' Above is the following text: "Emeli Loulu Aholelei Sione. Sunrise 01.07.74. Sunset 22.08.23."

Image courtesy of Dahlia Malaeulu, Mila’s Books.

Before we share our wonderful pukapuka in the lea faka-Tonga with you all, we wanted to take a moment to celebrate the life of Emeli Sione, who passed away in August 2023. Emeli was the bestselling author of A New Dawn (in lea faka-Tonga, Ko e Pongipongi Fo’ou), which was shortlisted for the Elsie Locke Non-fiction Award at this year’s Children’s Book Awards, and has also been shortlisted in the Ngaio Marsh Book Awards, but she also acted as author, editor, translator, advisor, and advocate for many other books in the Tongan language and about Tongan people and culture.

Emeli was a founding member of Mila’s Books based in Moera, Lower Hutt, one of the most significant publishers of children’s books in Pasifika languages in Aotearoa, and the only publishing company in New Zealand that works with an all-Pasifika team of authors, illustrators and editors. Through her work as an author and editor at Mila’s Books, and previously with the Ministry of Education, Emeli’s contribution to Pasifika literature, and Tongan children’s books in particular, can’t be overstated. This month, Mila’s Books are releasing 12 books in Tongan that Emeli worked on as part of the Tongan My Pasifika series — we can’t wait to have these books in our libraries for everyone to enjoy!

A New Dawn by Emeli Sione, published by Mila’s Books

Ko e Pongipongi Fo’ou by Emeli Sione, published by Mila’s Books

Lea Faka-Tonga at the Library

Check out some of our favourite books from the children’s section from and about Tonga, and in lea faka-Tonga:

Tonga / Toumu’a, Ruth
“The islands of Tonga 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.”– Provided by publisher.” (Catalogue)

Tongan heroes / Riley, David
“Tongan heroes presents inspirational stories of achievers who have Tongan ancestry. It includes: Legends like Aho’eitu, Hina and Seketoa, historical figures such as Queen Salote Tupou III, Pita Vi and Professor Futa Helu, contemporary heroes like Jonah Lomu, Captain Kamelia Zarka, Filipe Tohi, The Jets, Manu Vatuvei, Dr Viliami Tangi and Valerie Adams. Readers will be inspired as they discover the challenges these figures faced and overcame, to become some of the world’s best in their chosen fields.” (Catalogue)

The worm and the whale / Halapua, Lisala
“Worms, yams and humpback whales tangle in a heart warming Tongan fable”–Back cover.” (Catalogue)

How Tonga got its name = Ko e founga hono ma’u ‘e Tonga ‘a hono hingoa / Riley, David
“Maui threw his line and hook into the ocean. He felt the hook catch onto something huge and heavy. “Wow, it’s beautiful!” Maui said. What amazing sight did Maui see in the ocean that day?” (Catalogue)

Rise of the To’a / Tatafu, ‘Alisi
“Describes the culture behind the Tongan national rugby league team, Kau To’a, Mate Ma’a Tonga, MMT, and features profiles on each of the players. Also tells the fictional story of Toko, who overcomes his fears and grows in self confidence.” (Catalogue)

Learning Tongan through bathtime / Sanerivi, Deborah
“Follow along with these children as their mother names each of their amazing body parts after fun in the mud. Join them as they go through their bath and bed time routines. Sentences are written in Tongan with their English translations.” (Publisher description)

The eleventh sheep = ko e sipi hono tahataha / Mewburn, Kyle
“When the eleventh sheep falls out of Sian’s dreams and into the real world, Sian is excited to have a new friend. Every day they play together, and at night Sian falls straight asleep with her arms around her woolly friend. But she can tell the eleventh sheep is homesick”–Publisher’s description.” (Catalogue)

Ko fé ho ihu? = where is your nose / Piliu, Annabel
“An early learning primer for the Tongan language.” (Catalogue)

‘Oku ou lava ‘o tohi : I can write / Lovatt Davis, F. M.
“Photographs and text introduce a range of places where children can write.” (Catalogue)

Also, visit this link to find even more books in lea faka-Tonga at your local library.

More Resources

Check out the following websites to learn more about the islands of Tonga and this beautiful country’s culture, language and history:

Te ʻEpetoma ō Te Reo Māori Kūki ʻĀirani 2023

Kia orāna young readers, and welcome to Te ʻEpetoma ō Te Reo Māori Kūki ʻĀirani | Cook Islands Language Week 2023!

We hope you’re excited to share and celebrate some of Aotearoa’s closest whānau with us.

Like Aotearoa, Kūki ʻĀirani is a single country made up of multiple islands – 15 in total. They have their own government but are in “free association” with New Zealand. This means that Cook Islanders are New Zealand citizens, free to live and work here as they choose.

The theme of Te ʻEpetoma ō Te Reo Māori Kūki ʻĀirani this year is:

‘Ātuitui’ia au ki te au peu o tōku kāinga ipukarea | Connect me to the traditions and culture of my homeland

And there’s a lot of culture to connect with!

A photo of a woman sitting on a woven harakeke mat, weaving a colourful mat.

Image: Woman sewing Tivaevae in Rarotonga by John Colles Burland. Alexander Turnbull Library Archive, Ref No. PA12-0503-20.

Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani (the Cook Islands Māori language) and traditional arts are still proudly shared throughout the islands. Cook Islanders are known for their woodworking skill and textiles, like the patterned Tivaevae quilt.

The Cook Islands are also known for an interesting musical history which has changed over time, mixing traditional music, church music, ukulele and electronic ukulele. Traditional Cook Islands music has a unique and powerful sound, using both wooden drums (lali/pātē) and skin drums (pahu/pa’u), wind instruments, and singing.

A collection of wooden and skin drums arranged on a woven mat.

Image: Pa’u mangō (skin drum) from Te Papa Tongarewa, Ref No. FE010085. Licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0.

In the recent Kia Mau Festival — a Māori, Pasifika, and Indigenous arts festival in Wellington — there was a show called ‘Avaiki Nui Social which featured some of the best musicians from across the 15 Cook Islands.

In the video below, Cook Islands artist Tu Aratini talks about ‘Avaiki Nui, and explains some of the history of the group and of music in the Cook Islands. Some other great musicians to check out are father/daughter pair Will and Annie Crummer. Will was quite famous back in the 1960s, and Annie has been rocking it since the ’80s. You can find some of their music, and music by other Cook Islands musicians, on our catalogue!

A chef holds a small bowl with a mixture of fish, green herbs, lemon, coconut, and other aromatics.

Image: Still from How to make IKA MATA by TheCoconetTV.

As well as music, our Cook Islands whānau are also well known for their food, or kai. Kai from Kūki ‘Āirani often draws on the use of local sea life, with their most popular dish being Ika Mata. Ika mata means ‘raw fish,’ but it actually involves ‘cooking’ the fish by allowing it to soak in lemon juice and coconut.

Sound yum? Check out this “how to” video from TheCoconetTV to learn how to make it for yourself, or check out Sonja’s Kitchen: Sustainable Cuisine from the Cook Islands, a cookbook by Dee Pigneguy and Sonja Raela full of delicious recipes from across the Cook Islands!

Celebrating Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani in Aotearoa

With such a proud culture back home, it’s not surprising that Cook Islanders in Aotearoa can often feel disconnected, both from their whānau (family) and from their hanua (homeland).

One of the reasons we celebrate Te ‘Epetoma ō Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani this week is to make sure our Kūki ‘Āirani whānau know that the culture of their homeland is loved and appreciated no matter where they are.

By learning to use more Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani throughout Aotearoa, we also strengthen our own connection with the world that we all share.

Here are some simple phrases that you can practice with (visit the Ministry of Pacific Peoples’ website for more!):

Hello! — Kia orāna!

Thank you — Meitaki

Goodbye (when you are leaving) — ‘Ē no’o rā

Goodbye (when someone else is leaving) — ‘Aere rā

Yes — Āe

No — Kare

My name is… — Ko … tōku ingoa

Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani at the Library

Browse our selection of some of our favourite books in Cook Islands Māori, or about the Cook Islands, below. Don’t forget you can find more books in Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani on our catalogue!

Cook Islands / Kingstone, Taria
“Introduces the history, climate, population, social structure and unique ceremonies of the Cook Islands, and the importance of religion to its people. Suggested level: intermediate, junior secondary.” (Catalogue)

Kua kitea ‘a māmā = Finding mum / Long, Don
“In the supermarket, a little boy retraces his footsteps in order to find his mum.” (Catalogue)

Legends of the Cook Islands / Hopkins, Shona
“Collection of eight illustrated legends from the Cook Islands. Set in a mythological time known as Avaiki, these stories tell of brave men and women, mystical mountains, powerful gods and majestic sea creatures. Suggested level: primary, intermediate.” (Catalogue)

Cook Islands heroes / Riley, David
“Cook Islands Heroes tells the inspirational stories of achievers who have Cook Islands ancestry. It includes legends like Ina, Māui, Ngaru and Ru; historical figures such as Pa Tuterangi Ariki/Sir Thomas Davis, Alistair Te Ariki Campbell, Mautara and Margharet Matenga; and contemporary heroes like Lima Sopoaga, Mīria George, Dr Kiki Maoate, Kevin Iro, and Teremoana Raply.” (Publisher description)

‘Ei for the day / MacGregor, Jill
“Yvette and Kiikii wear an ‘ei and an ‘ei katu when their dance group performs at the Saturday Morning Market in Rarotonga​​.” (Catalogue)


Te Vaiaho o te Gagana Tokelau: Tokelau Language Week 2022

Fakamālo atu kia te koutou uma!

This year Te Vaiaho o te Gagana Tokelau | Tokelau Language Week runs from Sunday 23 October to Saturday 29 October! Our theme for this year is

“Halahala ki vavau, kae ke mau ki pale o Tokelau” which means “To plan for the future is to understand the past.”

Several activities and events will hold throughout New Zealand. Let’s read these books, visit some websites, and celebrate together!

All About Tokelau

Tokelau means “North Wind”, is located about 500km north of Samoa, while the distance between Tokelau and New Zealand is around 3748 km. It used to call as “Union Islands” and changed to Tokelau Islands in 1976. Tokelau has three small tropical coral atolls, which are Atafu, Nukunonu, and Fakaofo. The population in Tokelau is around 1500 people. Their national languages are Tokelauan and English. (Source: UNOCHA)


There are several books in our library collection that will let you know more about Tokelau! Let’s have a look!

Tokelau heroes / Riley, David
“Tokelau heroes presents inspirational stories of achievers who have Tokelauan ancestry.” (Catalogue)

Illustrated history of the South Pacific / Stenson, Marcia
“”The South Pacific is not only our geographic environment, it is also our cultural environment, and many New Zealanders trace their ancestry to Polynesian seafarers. This book is an introduction to the history of the South Pacific. A companion book to Illustrated History of New Zealand, also written by Marcia Stenson, it covers the following topics: geology and geography, the arrival of the first people to the Pacific, European exploration, war in the Pacific, political issues both historic and current.There is also specific information on these island groups: Cook Islands, Fiji, French Polynesia, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and the Polynesian outliers.”” (Catalogue)

Havali fakaua ki te fale = Walking home in the rain / Burgess, Feauaʼi Amosa
“Describes a group of children walking home from school in the rain.” (Catalogue)

Ko te tokotoko o toku tupuna = Papa’s tokotoko / Sione, Emeli
“Alo, the eldest grandson, initially rejects, but in the end takes on his responsibility to be a support for his grandfather.” (Catalogue)

Valigā magō : Painting sharks / Baker, Vaitoa
“It’s painting day at school. Hale and his best friend Ioane choose to paint pictures of sharks.” (Catalogue)

Tokelau Song Medley

We also have a beautiful Tokelau Song Medley video would like to share with you guys! Let’s sing together!

(Source: TheCoconetTV)

For more information about Tokelau, you may visit:

That’s it from us today about Tokelau Language Week 2022. Fakafetai and enjoy!

Faahi Tapu he Vagahau Niue: Niue Language Week 2022

Fakaalofa lahi atu!

Niue Header

This week, from Sunday 16 October to Saturday 22 October, we are celebrating Faahi Tapu he Vagahau Niue, Niue Language Week.

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.

This theme supports the overarching 2022 Pacific Language Weeks theme of sustainability.

Click the button below to find out about online events and activities!

Niue button

You can stay up to date with events on the Niue Language Week Facebook page too.

All about Niue

Niue is one of the South Pacific Islands, which is located in the centre of a triangle formed by Tonga, Samoa and the Cook Islands. Niue is famous for one of the largest upraised coral atolls in the world. The distance between Niue and the northeast of New Zealand is 2,400km, and it takes around 3 hours to fly from New Zealand to Niue. The population of Niue is around 1,600 people in 2022 (Source: Worldmeters). The official languages of Niue are Niuean and English. The theme for this language week aims to help encourage all Niue people to work together to sustain Vagahau Niue and cultures for future generations.


We have some Niue language books in our library collection, and you are most welcome to borrow them today!

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.” (Blurb)

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)

Also, visit this link to find hundreds of children’s books in Vagahau Niuē at your local library.

That’s it from us today! We hope you enjoy our Niue Language Week 2022! Fakaaue Lahi oue tulou.

Te ‘Epetoma ō Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani: Cook Islands Language Week 2022

Kia Orāna! It’s Te ʻEpetoma ō Te Reo Māori Kūki ʻĀirani | Cook Islands Language Week 2022!

Pacific Language Weeks are about all New Zealanders learning more about Pacific people that make up a big part of our population and are some of our closest neighbours!

The overarching theme for the 2022 Pacific Language Weeks is sustainability. Cook Islands Language Week has been celebrated every year in Aotearoa since 2012, with events running this year from Sunday 31st July to Saturday 6th August.

This year’s theme is:

‘Ātuitui’ia au ki te Oneone o tōku ‘Ui Tupuna | Connect me to the soil of my ancestors.

Help us celebrate this special time for the community by learning more about the unique culture, language and history of the Cook Islands through the information, books, and other resources below!

Where are the Cook Islands?

They are located in the South Pacific neighbouring Sāmoa, Niuē and French Polynesia. There are 15 islands altogether with a total land area of 240 square kilometres.

How many people speak Cook Islands Māori, and where do they live?

Te Reo Māori Kūki ʻĀirani (Cook Islands Māori) refers to several dialects (slightly different versions of the same language) spoken in the Cook Islands, with the most common language dialect being spoken in Rarotonga. In New Zealand, about 80,500 people are Cook Islanders, or of Cook Islands descent. Peoples of Cook Islands descent make up a significant portion of Te Whanganui-a-Tara (Wellington) and Aotearoa’s Pasifika population, with significant numbers living in our Northern suburbs and nearby Porirua. (Source: 2018 Census)

Why are they called the Cook Islands?

The area was first settled around 1000CE by Polynesian people who probably came from Tahiti, which is where the famous navigator Tupaia would come from over 700 years later. You can learn more about Tupaia here: Tupaia | Te Ara Encyclopaedia of New Zealand. They gave the islands names like Rarotonga, Aitutaki, and Rakahanga.

The first European contact with the islands took place in 1595, but the Cook Islands name comes from the British navigator Captain James Cook, who arrived first in 1773 and again in 1777. Strangely enough, the name ‘Cook Islands’ first appeared on a Russian map in the 1820s.

There is still a lot of debate today about whether the Cook Islands should take a new name that reflects the Polynesian history and heritage of the area. Visit Britannica Online to learn more about the history and people of the Cook Islands: Cook Islands | Encyclopaedia Britannica


Visit your local library and have a look at our amazing books to learn more about Cook Islands cultures and practice the language. At Newtown Library we also stock the Cook Islands News.
If you don’t have a library card, you can sign up for free!

Te ‘anga’anga ‘ōu ‘ā māmā = Mum’s new job / Tainui, Bronwyn
“Tiāki finds it difficult when his mother goes back to work, but discovers it is fun to help out at home by making lunch.” (Catalogue)

Kua kitea ‘a māmā = Finding mum / Long, Don
“In the supermarket, a little boy retraces his footsteps in order to find his mum.” (Catalogue)

Cook Islands heroes / Riley, David
“Cook Islands Heroes tells the inspirational stories of achievers who have Cook Islands ancestry. It includes legends like Ina, Maui, Ngaru and Ru; historical figures such as […] Alistair Te Ariki Campbell; and contemporary heroes Kevin Iro […] The book is written to inspire young Cook Islanders, to encourage reading and promote literacy.” (Publisher description)

‘Ei for the day / MacGregor, Jill
“Yvette and Kiikii wear an ‘ei and an ‘ei katu when their dance group performs at the Saturday Morning Market in Rarotonga​​.” (Catalogue)

Also, visit this link to find even more children’s books in Te Reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani at your local library.

More Resources

This is a good time to learn some Te Reo Māori Kūki ʻĀirani. Here are some useful phrases to help get started. Pronunciation is mostly similar to Te Reo Māori – so don’t be shy, give it a go!

Kia orāna – Greetings/Hello
ʻAere rā / ʻĒ noʻo rā – Goodbye (to those going/to those staying)
ʻInē? – Please
Meitaki maʻata – Thank you very much
Tatarāʻara – Sorry
Inā ake ana – Excuse me
Pēʻea koe/kōrua/kōtou? – How are you?
Meitaki maʻata au/māua/mātou – I am/We are well

There are lots of cool things happening across the country to celebrate this time. For more information on events and ideas on how to celebrate, visit these websites:

Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta: Rotuman Language Week 2022

Noaʻia ʻe mḁuri gagaj ʻatakoa! Welcome to Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta | Rotuman Language Week 2022.

Poster courtesy of the Ministry for Pacific Peoples.

What is Rotuman Language Week?

New Zealand is the only country in the world where the languages and culture of our Pasifika cousins are celebrated. Fäeag Rotuạm, the Rotuman language, is the first of nine Pasifika language weeks this year, and it runs from the 8th May – 14th May 2022. Rotuma Day itself was on the 6th of May.

Where is Rotuma you ask? The main island of Rotuma is about 13km by 4km and is about 580km from Fiji’s capital, Suva. Rotuma is a dependency of Fiji, so Rotumans will usually speak Fijian and English too! There are about 2000 Rotumans living on the island, and 10,000 living in mainland Fiji and globally.

More information about Rotuma Day and the history of Routma can be heard in this article from Radio NZ.

This year’s theme for Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta is:

Vetḁkia ‘os Fäega ma Ag fak hanua – Sustaining our Language and Culture.

In these times, when it sometimes feels like things are just moving too fast, we think this is a wonderful idea to reflect on.

So how do you speak Rotuman?

Well, Rotumans roll their ‘R’s and pronounce ‘G’ with a smooth ‘ing’ sound, similar to how ‘ng’ is pronounced in te reo Māori.

Here are some key phrases in Rotuman [Row-too-man]:
Noa’ia [Noah-e-yah]= Hello, greetings.
Ka ‘äe tapen? [Car eh tar-pen] = How are you?
Gou lelei fḁiåksia [Ngou leh-lay for-yak-see-yah] = I am well thank you.
Figalelei [Fee-nga-leh-lay] = Please
Fḁiåksia [Foyak-see-yah] = Thank you
Hanis ma röt’åk [Hah-niece mah röt-ack] = Sorry
La’ ma ḁlalum [Lah mah aw-lah-loom] = Goodbye (only to those leaving)
Fu’ ma ḁlalum [Foo mah aw-lah-loom] = Goodbye (only to those staying)

Find more words and phrases in this language guide produced by the Ministry for Pacific Peoples.

The Ministry for Pacific Peoples provides great resources and information about our Pasifika languages and cultural events. Visit the official NZ Rotuman Language Week Facebook page, and the official website, for more information about Rotuman Language Week 2022!

Understanding Ukraine and Russia: A Guide for Kids and their Adults

Wellington is home to thousands of people of Ukrainian and Russian descent, as well as people from Polish, Belarusian, and other Eastern or Central-Eastern European backgrounds. The current conflict between Ukraine and Russia means that people who have moved here from those countries, or who have family there, are probably feeling pretty anxious, scared, or upset right now. And of course, whenever there is conflict happening somewhere in the world, it tends to find its way into our everyday lives — through the news, through TV or internet content, or through our friends or teachers at school talking about it — and it’s completely normal for that to make us feel a bit scared or anxious as well.

A man in Ukrainian cultural dress, including a tall fur cap and an elaborately-knotted brocade, is holding a small child in front of a festival stall which is decorated with sunflowers.

The Ukrainian stall at the Palmerston North Festival of Cultures in 2018. Note the Ukrainian flag in the background, as well as all the sunflowers — the sunflower is the national flower of Ukraine. Image courtesy of Palmerston North City Library, licensed under CC BY 4.0.

One way that we can help ourselves, and others, is by learning as much as we can about the history and culture of those places, and how news gets created and reported. If we learn about that, we can understand more about what’s going on at the moment in Ukraine and Russia — which means we’ll be more aware of, and better able to process, what’s being reported in the media and what our friends, whānau, and the wider community are talking about.

The good news is that the library has a whole heap of resources — books and other things — to help you learn more about Ukraine, Russia, international conflict, and the media more generally. Read on to find out how the library can help you understand what’s going on in the world at the moment.

HINT: Many of the links in this blog go to the Encyclopaedia Britannica for Kids. This is accessible to all Wellington City Libraries patrons. But to access this wonderful resource, and the others mentioned in this blog, you’ll need to login using your library card number (on the back of your card) and 4 digit pin (last FOUR numbers of the phone number listed on your library account), and the link will take you straight there.

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Mga bagong libro sa Filipino!

Read this post in English!

Magandang balita! May mga bagong pambatang libro sa wikang Filipino, bilingguwal, at multilingguwal ang matatagpuan ngayun sa Wellington City Libraries. Mula sa kwento ng Pambansang Alagad ng Sining para sa Panitikan na si Virgilio Almario at iba pang premyadong manunulat gaya nina Jomike Tejido, Patricia Celina Ngo, Liana Romulo, Corazon Dandan Albano, tiyak na masisiyahan hindi lamang ang mga bata kung hindi ang buong pamilyang Pilipino at mga ibang mambabasa ng wikang Filipino.

Ilan sa mga kwento na inyong matatagpuan ay ang mga sumusunod:

Gustong Mag-aral ni Sula / Almario, Virgilio

Tunghayan ang kwento ni Sula, isang batang T’boli, kung paano napukaw sa kanyang murang edad ang kagustuhang matutong magbasa at magsulat.

Mga hayop na bibilangin / Wildsmith, Brian

Isang nakakatuwa at nakaka-engganyo na board book na may makukulay na hayop sa bawat pahina. Masayang mag-aral ng pagbilang at pagbigkas ng mga uri ng mga hayop sa Filipino.
“1 unggoy, 2 usa, 3 daga, 4 na paru-paru, 5 ibon….”

Nasaan po sila? : sa mga pista / Tejido, Jomike

Maaliw sa panibagong Search and Find na serye kung saan maaari nating hanapin ang mga bagay na matatagpuan sa nakakatuwa at makukulay na mga tanawin. Hanapin ang mga ito na nakatago sa iba’t ibang lugar na pangturista, mga pagdiriwang, o kaya ay sa iba’t ibang lugar sa Pilipinas at sa Asya. Ang Nasaan Po Sila serye ay isang libro na bago at nakakaengganyong basahin para sa mga mag-aaral ng Ingles at Filipino.

Sari-Sari Mga Salitang Paulit-Ulit (A Book of Double Words) / Yambao, Auri Asuncion

“Bahay-bahayan… sabay-sabay… paruparo… waling-waling… liko-liko… yakap-yakap… “
Isang kaaya-aya at nakakaengganyong libro na puno ng paulit-ulit na mga salita. Sa Filipino, inuulit ang mga salita o bagahi ng isang salita upang gayahin ang tunog, diin, paigtingin, tipunin at pagsamahin ang mga ideya, at ipagdiwang ang pluralidad!

Sayaw ng mga Kamay / Que, Joanna

Tunghayan ang kwento tungkol sa magkaibigan na nalampasan ang mga hadlang para makapag-usap gamit ang Filipino Sign Language. Natutuhan nina Sam at Mai na mag-usap sa pamamagitan ng sayaw ng mga kamay. Inilarawan nila sa isa’t-isa kung ano ang mga nakikita at naririnig nila sa kanilang paligid. Ang resulta nito ay isang magandang pagkakaibigan kung saan hindi hadlang ang uri ng komunikasyon upang magkaintindihan.

That’s it, Pancit! / Ngo, Patricia Celina

“Masaya ang magkaroon ng dalawa sa maraming bagay pero minsan ay nakalilito.”
“Paano ako pipili sa dalawang kultura?”
“Dahil isa lang ako, paano ko malalaman kung sino talaga ako?”

Ako ba ay maliit? = Am I small? / Winterberg, Philipp

Ang librong ito ay isinalin sa higit na 200 wika at diyalekto mula nang ito’y mailathala. “Maliit ba ako?” Sundan si Tamia sa kaniyang paglalakbay at kaniyang pagtatanong sa mga hayop na kaniyang nakakasalubong. Tiyak na ikatutuwa ng mga mambabasa sa mga naging tugon ng mga hayop sa kaniya.

Tara, Itok! / Dandan-Albano, Corazon

Si Itok ay laging nag-iisa at napag-iiwanan dahil kalahati lamang ang kaniyang buntot. Mula sa makukulay na guhit ng ilustrador na si Ara Vilena, tuklasin natin ang kuwento ni Itok at kung paano niyang napagtagumpayan ang kaniyang kapansanan upang makahanap ng kaibigan.

My first book of Tagalog words : an ABC rhyming book of Filipino language and culture / Romulo, Liana

“Ang C ay para sa champorado, tsokolate at kanin, maniwala kayo o hindi. Ito ang almusal ko. Masarap habang mainit.” Kilalanin ang isang kasiya-siyang pamilyang Pilipino na magpapakilala sa atin sa tunog ng mga salitang Filipino na may kalakip na paliwanag tungkol sa lingguwistika at kultura na madaling mauunawaan ng mga bata. Matututunan sa bawat pahina ang mga pang-araw-araw na salitang mahalaga sa kulturang Pilipino na nakalahad gamit ang kaaya-ayang ABC-approach.

Bisitahin lamang ang website ng Wellington City Libraries at i-type ang mga salitang “Filipino Language Readers” o “Tagalog Language Readers” upang mahanap at mapareserba ng alin man sa inyong napiling libro. Maaari ding ipadala ang napiling ninyong libro sa pinakamalapit na sangay ng aklatan sa inyong lugar. Kaya ano pa ang hinihintay n’yo? Tayo nang magbasa sa wikang Filipino!

New Books in Filipino!

Read this post in Filipino!

Good news! Fresh titles celebrating the Filipino culture are up for grabs at Wellington City Libraries. These new children’s books in Filipino – including bilingual (Filipino-English), and multilingual (Filipino-English-Mandarin) stories too – will surely become your new family favourites. From stories written by National Artist for Literature Virgilio Almario and other award-winning writers like Jomike Tejido, Patricia Celina Ngo, Liana Romulo, Corazon Dandan Albano, this will be an enjoyable reading and learning experience not only for the kids but also the whole family, as well as other Filipino language readers.

Here are some titles you can check out.

Gustong Mag-aral / Almario, Sula ni Virgilio

This book tells the story of Sula, a young T’boli, and how in her young age she has stirred up the desire to learn to read and write.

Mga hayop na bibilangin / Wildsmith, Brian

A cute and engaging board book with colourful animals across the pages. Enjoy learning how to count and how to recite the names of animals in Filipino.
“1 monkey, 2 deer, 3 rats, 4 butterflies, 5 birds…..”

Nasaan po sila? : sa mga pista / Tejido, Jomike

Enjoy this new Search and Find book series where readers can search and look for objects hidden in fun and colourful landscapes. Find them hidden in different tourist spots, festivals, places in the Philippines and in Asia. Nasaan Po Sila series is a great new read for bilingual learners of English and Filipino.

Sari-Sari Mga Salitang Paulit-Ulit (A Book of Double Words) / Yambao, Auri Asuncion

“Bahay-bahayan… sabay-sabay… paruparo… waling-waling… liko-liko… yakap-yakap…”
A delightful and attractive book filled with repetitive words. In Filipino, we repeat words or part of a word to mimic sound, emphasise, intensify, gather and combine ideas, and celebrate plurality.

Sayaw ng mga Kamay / Que, Joanna

Discover this uplifting story of friends who overcame barriers using Filipino Sign Language. Sam and Mai learned to communicate with each other through the “dance of the hands,” describing in sign language what they can see and hear around them. The result is a beautiful friendship where the mode of communication is not a hindrance in understanding each other.

That’s it, Pancit! / Ngo, Patricia Celina

“Having two of many things is fun but sometimes confusing.”
“How do I choose one culture over the other?”
“Since there’s only one of me, how do I know who I am?”

Ako ba ay maliit? = Am I small? / Winterberg, Philipp

This picture book has been translated into over 200 languages and dialects since its publication. “Am I small?” Follow Tamia as she asks various animals that she meets on her journey and be surprised with the different responses she received. Be enchanted with every page filled with beautiful and imaginative pictures.

Tara, Itok! / Dandan-Albano, Corazon

Itok is always alone and is left alone because he only has half of his tail. From the colourful pictures of illustrator Ara Vilena, let’s explore Itok’s story and how his disability didn’t become a barrier in finding a friend.

My first book of Tagalog words : an ABC rhyming book of Filipino language and culture / Romulo, Liana

“C is for champorado, chocolate-and-rice porridge, believe it or not. I have it for breakfast. It’s best when it’s hot.” Meet a delightful Filipino family who will introduce you to the sounds of Filipino words along with child-friendly notes on linguistics and culture. Learn from each page where everyday words important to the Filipino culture are presented in an easy and playful ABC approach.

Visit the Wellington City Libraries website and type the words “Filipino Language Readers” or “Tagalog Language Readers” to reserve a copy of your chosen book. You can get them delivered to your nearest library branch. What are you waiting for? Let’s read in Filipino!