Manu Kindergarten in the North Taranaki Midweek

Children from New Plymouth’s Manu Kindergarten demonstrated their soup-making ability and showed their extended family around their favourite play areas on Saturday as the kindergarten celebrated Matariki/Puanga, the Maori New Year.

Despite the awful weather, the kindergarten was packed with grandparents, parents, aunties, uncles and siblings who gathered to enjoy a shared lunch, which included pumpkin soup made by the children. Kindergarten owner and teacher Rhonda Miller says the kindergarten has celebrated Matariki for the last five years and sees it as a special time to gather whanau together for a shared meal.

“Matariki puts the emphasis on sharing, harvesting and preparing for the winter season so it’s a great time for us to connect with and enjoy the company of our families and extended families – and the children absolutely love having all their family visit.”

Saturday’s celebration also marked the launch of the kindergarten’s website,, which Rhonda says will make communicating with the kindergarten’s families a lot easier.

Manu Kindergarten in the News