According to recently published research, you already know more than you think you know of te reo Māori.  Your Ira Cards will exponentially boost your vocabulary list. 

So, what do you know already?

Language experts calculate that most New Zealanders will have between 20 words that are fairly common knowledge, and up to 50 that they use or understand even without realising it.  Below are 24 commonly used words – how many do you know? Add these to the 67 kupu/words in your deck of Ira cards, plus the likely dozens of words you already have in your vocabulary (think place names, colours, numbers, the national anthem, government department names, wine names, etc etc), and already your vocab has expanded to well over 100 words, potentially to the 250 plus words which will make you a Beginner user of Te Reo.

The Government’s strategic vision is for there to be 1 million users of Te Reo Māori by 2040.

You are now one of them.

If you want to have a listen to Jesse Mulligan interview an academic on the University of Canterbury’s research into how much te reo New Zealanders already know, click on the link here

Awa – river

Kiwi – large flightless bird

Aotearoa – New Zealand

Hangi – hangi

Kai – food

Hikoi – walk


Hui – meeting

Poi – traditional ball on a cord

Waka – canoe

Tangi – funeral

Koha – gift

Kauri – large native tree

Reo – language

Wahine – woman

Haka – traditional performace

Maunga – mountain

Motu – island

Pango – black

Tapu – sacred

Wai – water

Whānau – family

Waiata – song

Moana – sea

Nui – big


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