Welcome to Haeata Community Campus

Cultural Narrative

The cultural narrative written by Ngai Tahu for the East of Christchurch is a central feature in the development of both the physical environment and ongoing learning programmes.

Te Reo Māori and Tikanga Māori are valued and emphasised throughout the campus.

In conjunction with Ngāi Tūāhuriri and the cultural narrative gifted to the schools in the east side of Christchurch by Mahaanui Mātauraka we worked alongside Mana Whenua Facilitator, Corban Te Aika to name particular buildings in the school. Extensive research and wānanga took place to ensure that the mana of the Māori cultural history was upheld and in addition that the naming was aligned to the nature of the buildings, learning and philosophy.

The naming of buildings and spaces followed the narrative of the local Māori history including the environment, tūpuna and species that traditionally lived in Aranui and its surroundings. Again, consultation took place within the SLT and EBoT to ensure that the process was inclusive.


Gateway or main entranceway

Kaiwhakairo/Carver- Riki Manuel


Maui Tikitiki-a-Taranga 

Tamanuiterā relating to the naming of the school and its eastern location being among the first to see the sunrise.

Left Amo

Ama mauī

Tāwhirimātea Shown without corresponding tohu or adornment as these have been blown off him by the winds. Has an accompanying manaia form between his legs representing wind.

Haumiatiketike Shown with karaka berries in his hand. Atua of uncultivated wild foods. He didn’t speak to the plant forms between the legs of Haumia.

Rongo-mā-Tāne Atua of cultivated foods. Tohu include the Kō and kumara vine beneath his feet.

Right Amo

Ama matua

Tangaroa With fishtail and accompanying fish form in manaia position

Tūmatauenga With mere/patu

Rūaumoko With whenua and cracks which ran through the community becoming the catalyst for the school closures and beginning of Haeata Community Campus. 


Kōmanawa is the spring of water that wells up, much like feelings well up in the heart.

The surface waterways of the Ōtākaro/Avon catchment are spring-fed and support a number of wetland areas. These are highly valued for their cultural and ecological significance, in addition to their contribution to the general river environment that is enjoyed by the wider Christchurch community.

 All springs are considered to be significant to the tangata whenua as they provide a source of freshwater which sustains life and are used by Tohunga for ceremonies and healing purposes. They also maintain the base flow to sustain the recreational and aesthetic attraction of the waterways which are enjoyed by many people.


The place where a river begins is called its source. River sources are also called headwaters.  In this region, many of the sources in the Waitaha region are from springs.  A spring is a place where water in the Earth, called groundwater, flows to the surface naturally. A spring forms when an aquifer, or natural underground reservoir, fills with groundwater and overflows.  From what we know, the source of the Ōtākaro that shows itself in the Waitaha region is a spring near the airport, but we are told that the water itself travels via aquifers from Te Tiritiri o te Moana – the Southern Alps. 


The waters are not swiftly flowing. They are not choppy water.  A steady flowing river is neither tidal nor does it swell only during or after excessive rainfall, but it is consistently flowing, as the Ōtākaro has done for centuries.  They are sometimes referred to as a perennial river.


This term references the makeup of the geography of this region; wetlands, many small streams and tributaries, and various springs feeding the main rivers of the region.  Significant ground drainage occurred post colonisation as immigrants wanted to farm the land, as that was what they knew to do.  Lucas Associates ecosystem map shows the type of land – the ecosystem on which Christchurch was built, and particularly shows the dune ecosystem, the estuarine ecosystem and the peat plains ecosystems that make up this eastern portion.  We have learned a lot about the nature of the land under us in Ōtautahi post-earthquake, so this ecosystem map wouldn’t be a shock to any of us.  But what we know; without the disastrous events of the 2010 and 2011 major earthquakes, we would not have Haeata and the opportunities before us all today.

Some parts of nearby Travis Wetlands – Ōruapaeroa – could be considered kōrepo – shallow lagoon areas.


Through the naming, we have been following the journey of the Ōtākaro, from the Hikuawa, through Te Kōrepo, along the Kaunuku, to te Ihutai.  This significant mahinga kai area, which was traditionally owned and used by Kaiapoi Ngāi Tahu (Ngāi Tūāhuriri), and this relationship is acknowledged as part of the Claims Settlement Act 1998.

Our Language

Here are some of the terms that you will hear used at Haeata:

  • Ākonga/Learner

  • Hapori/Learning Community

  • Hauora/ Wellbeing

  • Kaiako/Teacher
  • Kaimahi/Staff
  • Kaiāwhina/Support person

  • Kaikōtuitui/Dean
  • Kaiārahi/Leader of learning in hapori
  • Kaihautū Whaakako/Deputy Principal

  • Kaupapa Ako/The time kaiako and ākonga work together to develop, discover and learn about a variety of subjects

  • Kura/School

  • Kōmanawa/Years 1-11 Reo Rua Māori

  • Manukura/Leader/Principal of the school

  • Manukura Tuarua/ Associate Principal

  • Puna Ako/A small group of students within a hapori attached to one or two kaiako
  • Raukura/Assistant Principal

  • Rākaihautūtanga / Rākaihautūtanga is an opportunity for our ākonga to pick up their own kō and explore and drive their learning by participating in integrated learning.

  • Tamariki/Children
  • Tamaiti/Child

  • Whānau/​Family​
  • Waharoa/Gateway or main entranceway