Below are some talking points and activities to pass the time, all relating to today’s story.
Discuss the ideas presented in the story with your family—at home or over video conferencing. Find ways to involve as many people as possible, especially those who you know are isolated by the lock-down.
- Hauturu’s 700m peaks are often shrouded in cloud; the forest is “moisture-loving.” What do you see that looks like it thrives in moisture, in the pictures? Looking at the various animals in the pictures, which is particularly special or beautiful to you?
- Captain James Cook gave Hauturu its English name, Little Barrier, in 1769 when he passed by on The Endeavour. What were some of the other things you found interesting about the history of the island? Did you know that it was covered in feral cats for over 100 years, or, when the article was written, kiore?
- In the four years her mother was a DOC ranger on the island, the writer’s teenage daughter filled her days with Correspondence School work, lots of time reading, riding her bike, building huts and climbing trees. With her parents, she fished, swam, snorkelled, played card and board games and listened to music in front of the fire. Is it a life that appeals to you? Would you find it lonely to be the only teenager or child on an isolated island, or not? Did you know that there are still DOC rangers with families living on predator-free islands?
- The article describes the forced removal of Ngati Manuhiri from their homes on Hauturu; “armed Government troops landed on Hauturu and shipped (them) back to Auckland prison in chains.” Shortly afterwards Hauturu was passed into Crown ownership. What is your reaction to this description of the way the government acted?
- The article describes a Ngati Manuhiri whānau coming to Hauturu. A 10 year old mokopuna’s thoughts are recorded as follows:“To Te Kiri, I, one of your mokopuna, followed the wind knowing where it will rest. Tane’s children surrounded me and the songs of birds’ karanga echoed as we came ashore. The eyes of the patu-paiarehe still inhabit the high places. I whisper to the wind the joys, the sorrows of my heart, knowing that they will reach this place.” What does this speech suggest to you about how this boy experiences Hauturu, and what kind of connections he has to the place?
Activity: Make a stalk-necklace
At this time of year, you’ll find hollow, dried stalks in the garden – probably hidden under new spring growth. Agapanthus or similar plants have stalks that dry with a hollow centre, perfect for cutting into beads.
You will need:
- Paint and paintbrushes
- Dried stalks from the garden
- Elastic or string
Step One: Find your dried stalks. Make sure you remove any earwigs or other creatures sheltering inside – shake them out into the garden so they can find a new home.
Step Two: Paint the stalks in your choice of colours. Varnish over them if you want a gloss.
Step Three: When the paint is dry, cut the stalk into pieces. Thread the pieces onto elastic.