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Improving fluency in te reo Māori through Photo Booth

Tags: Learning languages | Multimedia – video | Middle primary | Primary | Upper primary |

Students at Firth Primary School in Matamata developed fluency and confidence in te reo Māori using Photo Booth.

“Our school regularly reviews the way technology is embedded in effective learning and teaching.”
eLPF 2014

Developing their mihi

The classroom teacher showed students video clips of people being introduced in te reo Māori to whānau. Students discussed the content of the clips and used them as models to prepare their own simple introductions (stating their name and where they are from). Students shared their introductions with a buddy.

The teacher supported students to include their iwi (tribe), maunga (mountain), kura (school), matua (parents), and tipuna (ancestors) in their mihi.

A range of activities helped to consolidate this stage of learning such as:

  • learning a local waiata
  • practising te reo with a peer
  • completing written activities
  • creating visual art works representing their mihi
  • viewing student mihi on YouTube
  • taking their own written mihi home for further support from whānau.

Providing opportunities to learn through Photo Booth

Photo Booth is an iPad app that allows users to take photos and record videos. Students used Photo Booth to record themselves saying their mihi out loud. It is easy to use and provides a high-quality video recording that can be saved in a variety of formats for use in other projects.

Students viewed their recorded mihi, reflected on success criteria, and re-recorded until they were satisfied. Recordings were shared with peers and the teacher for feedback. After rehearsing and recording their mihi a number of times through Photo Booth, students were ready to present their mihi to a live audience.


View the video taken before rehearsing several times.


View the video taken after rehearsing several times.

Student outcomes

Students were highly engaged when recording their mihi. Practising and reviewing their mihi in Photo Booth led to increased language fluency, higher confidence levels, and a deeper understanding of the importance of a mihi. Several students emerged as leaders who are now able to do the whaikōrero on a marae and welcome people into the school.