Dual language resources for Pasifika new entrant learners were released on December 5th, launched at Holy Cross School in Papatoetoe, Auckland.
The resources comprise 100 dual-language flip books, audio and online resources in five Pasifika languages – Samoan, Tongan, Tokelauan, Cook Islands Māori and Niuean – and English, as well as supporting materials for teachers and parents.
Designed to build on the strengths of Pasifika learners’ existing language skills, the resources support the development of English language and literacy skills along with transition to English medium schools.
The Ministry of Education have stated they are aware Pasifika children make less-than-expected success in reading and writing in their first years of school, but have been advised that drawing on all of a child’s cultural capital, especially their literacy and language capital, can support their English literacy development.
Prior to the release of the Pasifika dual language resources, a selection of them were piloted in seven South Auckland schools by a team of Auckland University academics led by Dr Rae Si’ilata.
The pilot found that students’ achievement, confidence and self-esteem increased in English language and literacy after six months at school, by using and building on the strengths of their first language, while teachers reported gaining valuable insights into how to further develop their literacy and language teaching skills and practices.
Parent fono trials were also held in clusters of Auckland schools, led by Pasifika languages consultant Patisepa Tuafuti.
The trials received high praise from schools, parents and students who responded enthusiastically to being able to share and learn new ideas about language and literacy in a culturally responsive way.
Director of Education for Auckland Isabel Evans, who spoke at the launch, congratulated everyone who contributed knowledge, expertise and their time to making these resources possible for our children.
“Every student deserves the chance to build their language and literacy competency so that they can succeed in their time at school
“These are wonderful resources and will benefit our children.”
The development of these resources was a shared project between the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Pacific Peoples, the University of Auckland and the Pasifika community.
Further Information on how to access the resources:
The Pasifika dual language resources can be ordered free of charge from the Ministry’s Down the Back of the Chair catalogue and online from the Ministry’s Te Kete Ipurangi (TKI) web platform.