Planting Day at Te Maire Lagoon in Shannon

Yesterday on Wednesday 14 June our class travelled with Room 6 to a place called Te Maire Lagoon in Shannon to help plant trees. We were invited by Horizons Regional Council. We had to take a bus because it was too far to drive.


Before we started we had a karakia led by Matua Robert Ketu and Pa Wylie. We helped plant 1,800 trees in just under two hours. Afterwards we were starving! We had kai and water given to us by Ngāti Whakatere. We all enjoyed our day. Written by Poutama.

Cooking Technology in Poutama

Last week we started Cooking Technology in Poutama and the year 6 students from Tuakana. We started with a ‘no bake slice’. We had to pick a slice that the whole class could eat, including Lilly who has an anaphylaxis allergy to eggs and nuts. We decided on lolly cake. We split up into 4 groups with a year 6 leader in each group. We were all assigned a task in our group. We used maths concepts that we are learning about during our maths breakout groups (fractions, and capacity). Unfortunatly our school technology room is out of action due to a flooding disaster (a rat ate through our dishwasher waste pipe!) so we had to find room in our staffroom and outside to work.


We liked the process of making our slice, but loved eating the final product more! This week on Friday we are making and baking bread!

Welcome Mr McCallum

Last week Miss Salton left our classroom. We welcomed Mr McCallum. He spent the last year in Teina which is our junior classroom at Poroutawhao School. Mr McCallum has many interests which include; the environment, native birds, plants and animals, and his family. Mr McCallum is already very impressed with the technological skills of Poutama. We are all helping him upskill in this area.

Goodbye Miss Salton

Today is Miss Salton’s last day with us. Next week, our teacher becomes Mr McCallum who is moving up from the Junior Class.

Yesterday, we had a shared lunch to say goodbye, it was our class as well as most of Tuakana (our senior class) as Miss Salton has also taught them throughout her time here.

We will really miss Miss Salton when she has gone. Some of our favourite memories with her are:
– Learning to play Ki-0-Rahi (2022 and 2023 class) and going to the tournament
– Going to Cloud 9 and the Lido (2022 class)
– Doing our galaxy and paper mache planet art (2021 class and 2023 class)
– Learning with Miss Salton
– Learning new computer skills
– Cross Country (Colour Run)
– Swimming Sports
– Tech lessons
– Our first blog posts
– Getting to play football
– Lots of PE
– Helping us with our writing
– Being our coach for different sport teams (Football, Hockey, Waterpolo, Netball)
– Going to Kimberley
– Scaring her with spiders (because she does not like them)
– Shared lunches
– Watching movies and listening to music
– Watching us play our sports

Miss Salton is going to be working for Manaiakalani, being an in-class facilitator.

Otago Museum & University – The Science of Medicines

Today, Craig and Greg from Otago University and Otago Museum came to visit us to teach us about the Science of Medicines. Each class took turns visiting them to find out more.

Vani got to add in liquid into a test tube, 3 different times, which changed the colour in there to show how antibiotics work.

Liam, Jonty and Zephy got to drop different types of pills into liquid to see how fast the reaction time was.

Layla, Kaliah-Rose, Emma and Sinead got to throw ‘covid’ at dolls to see if they would fall, and the whole class played covid ker-plunk.

After that we all got to look around at the different things that they had brought. We got to look at things under the microscopes, and used a computer and iPads to look around at images of illnesses as well as play different games.
There was also a 3D model of the covid bug.

We learnt lots!


Kimberley Reserve

On the last day of term 1, our whole school went out to Kimberley Reserve. Kimberley Reserve is near the Ōhau River with lots of places to swim and go on bush walks. There is also a huge field you can play on.

Our Senior Class (including Vani) stayed out the night before and did things such as an Easter Egg hunt, spotlight and went down to the river to look at the fish and went eeling. The seniors really enjoyed themselves.

The next day, when the rest of us joined we broke up into our classes and did 3 activities. First, we did the slip-n-slide, if we had our togs (and some of us did it in our clothes) we got to run up down the tarpaulin getting covered in soap and water. Those of us who didn’t want to do this, played different sports out on the big field.

Our second activity was going down to the river, Whaea Krishna walked with us down there and some of us went into the river. Lots of people walked to the other side of the river but  Kaliah-Rose, Ngarongo and Rex investigated what was over there. Some other people swum most of the way across, but it was very, very cold! Those of us who didn’t swim, were able to explore around the outside and skipped stones along the river. Retia and Remi found lots of rubbish and we helped clean up some of the area. We also sae a fire pit, so someone had been out there keeping warm!

Our last activity was the bush walk. Luckily, Tiare’s mum was with us, because she knew the way through (Miss Salton didn’t). We got to see lots of birds, Pīwakawaka were everywhere. We also got to see lots of native trees, and some fungi. Unfortunately, Remi got stung! But he was OK as Sivannah’s mum had some sting cream that he used.

When we got back from the bush walk, it was lunch time! We got to have sausage sizzles (cooked by Retia’s dad and other parents). Just as we were getting our food, the rain came down and we all ran back to the shelter. The rain didn’t last very long (only like 2 minutes) so we got to come back out, eat and play a bit more while Miss Salton set up the final activity, which was a house activity- Tug-o-War!

We all had to face-off in Tug-o-War, with our points being added up to work out who would face for 3rd/4th and 1st/2nd. Takitimu and Te Arawa faced off for 3rd (Te Arawa won) and Tainui and Aotea faced off for 1st/2nd. Tainui won overall! In our last matches, the teachers joined in with their houses to help their house.

Here is the final with Aotea (and Mr McCallum) and Tainui (and Miss Salton). One of our Senior Students took over running the event so Miss Salton could compete.

AFTER the house competition, Miss Salton had ALL the adults that were there come up and compete against the seniors. The adults won!
THEN, we had the adults VS the ENTIRE SCHOOL! WE WON!!!!

After that, we waited for parents to pick us up. We really enjoyed our day, and had a great time!

Scientists Day

Today was a very exciting day for us because we got to be Scientists for an hour!

We had about eight scientists come in to work with our school today. We looked at the leaf litter from Ngawakahiamoe. Heather brought in samples from 2 different areas – one from a wet area that was lower and one from the bank which was higher and bit drier.

We were able to collect some of the leaf litter and put it into a petri dish. We then got to look at it under microscopes.

We got taught to use the microscopes you have to put your hands on the dials on the side to move the magnifying glass up and down, there were also little dials on eye parts that you could turn to enhance the view.

Some of things we found were: bugs, such as: snails, centipedes, millipedes, spiders, sand hoppers, land hoppers, ladybugs (both blue and red), ants, flies, bugs that light up and worms, mushrooms, sticks, leaves, soil and kahikatea berries.

Some of us, who were really interested in the science are able to go back after lunch and have another look.



Ngāwakahiamoe is a swamp bush reserve behind our school, which is named for – Where the waka sleeps.

On Thursday, our entire school (except Layla – who has a broken leg) walked the 2.5 kilometres from our school to Ngāwakahiamoe, which is found out behind us. We are the Kaitiaki of this area, so it is nice to go out there and explore the land out there and learn how we can help look after it.

Some students in our class, Kaliah-Rose and Ngarongo, as well as other students in the school, have helped plant trees out Ngāwakahiamoe as their iwi is closely connected to this place.

Some of our favourite things to do were: play amongst the roots, swinging on vines, exploring the forest, finding bones from a cow, finding lots of little (edible) berry seeds and learning more about the environment. It was also really cool to find some silver ferns!

On Tuesday, we have some scientists coming in to help us explore the leaf litter we found on the ground out there, as there are many tiny snail species out at Ngāwakahiamoe.


Sustainable Coastlines

Last week, our entire school took the bus (or van) down to Waitārere Beach.

Olivia and Nate from Sustainable Coastlines came in first thing in the morning, and spoke to our whole school about what we were doing and why we were doing it.

We were then broken up into 2 groups – years 5-8 and years 1-4. The year 5’s went first and waited for everyone else down at the beach

When everyone got to the beach, most of us were able to put hi-vis vests (there wasn’t enough for everyone to have one) as well as a pair of gloves because we were going to be picking up rubbish!

The year 5-8’s then hammered pegs into the ground about 50 metres apart and then walked along as a huge group picking up any rubbish that we saw.

The year 1-4’s were on a different part of the beach, we were in smaller groups walking amongst our boundary looking for rubbish.

The year 1-4’s also got to build sandcastles, while some of the year 5-8’s did a running race along the beach.

The coolest thing that was found was a MASSIVE pumice rock, that was way bigger than all of our heads!

When we got back to school, we put all the rubbish we had found on a tarpaulin – there was over 300

pieces of rubbish!

What we learnt about this is that we should always take our rubbish home with us when we leave somewhere as the environment is just as important as us!

Alien Monsters!

Kia ora!

A few weeks ago, Miss Salton taught us how to use Google Draw to create a creature. We could use any shapes we wanted using the shapes and line tool. We coloured are shapes using the fill bucket, and some of us even learnt how to create a gradient effect for our creature.

Most people also made a background for their monster or alien.

We used our creative skills (one of our values!) to help us come up with a creature. We learnt about the different tools that Google Draw can give us. We also learnt how to search for pictures for our backgrounds.

Check out our slide deck below!