Teens fundraise for Hawaiian adventure

CIARA PRATT
Last updated 05:00 18/03/2014
Hawaii Massey

Cultural opportunity: Eight students from Massey High School, from left, Tayla Steffe, Dyrell Clark, Savanah Welch, Jordan Randall-Whiu, Georgia Ward, Michaela Southworth, Ariana Paterson, Monika Rapira, have been chosen to present at the World Indigenous Peoples Conference on Education in Hawaii.

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A group of Massey High School students need help to get their cultural message across to a global audience.

Eight representatives have been chosen to give two presentations at the World Indigenous Peoples Conference on Education in Honolulu, Hawaii in May.

Both of the school's presentation proposals were chosen early this year out of 700 applications from education institutions around the world.

But this opportunity comes at a high price - one the school can't afford.

Students will be responsible for funding their own way at a cost of $5000 each. This will cover expenses including flights, accommodation, transport and the conference registration fee.

Teacher Laura Swan says students who wanted to go on the trip had to submit an application about themselves and what they could contribute as part of the team.

She says for many students, this will be their first time overseas and on a plane.

"Students will be able to make important international connections on this trip.

"We also plan to attend a youth day with Hawaiian youth to learn about each others cultures."

Tayla Steffe, 14, is one of those students who was chosen to attend the trip.

She says everyone is using different talents to fundraise including holding bake sales and selling artwork.

"Our school is really good at acknowledging everyone's different cultures," she says.

"Just because you are Maori it doesn't mean you know everything about your culture so we are always learning and identifying.

"This is not a free trip for us to muck around, we are going to share a strong message about how great our culture is."

The school will make two presentations.

One will look at how Maori students in the gifted and talented programme and bilingual unit connect with their culture.

The second presentation will share the school's flipped classroom model where Maori students worked with the University of Auckland to create webcasting to help them learn te reo Maori and maths.

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