What drives me to learn Te Reo Maori is to honour the Tangata Whenua of this land by making sure as tau iwi I put in the Mahi to educate myself and those around me on tino rangatiratanga to create a more inclusive Aotearoa community.
I am part Maori (Te Rarawa decent) and have been learning Te Reo over the past 2 years so I can be more confident in using it in my classes with my tamariki and also for my own personal growth as Maori.
It has been one regret I have in life is not learning te reo, not just at home but being so far away in the UK it’s been even harder to learn when You don’t have the confidence but also being isolated out in the sticks so Video calling has been my saviour!
Personally I think learning Te Reo Māori and the Tikanga connects us back to Papatuanuku, reminds us about what it really means to be not only Māori, but to be a human being - to take our minds away from the material world we have become so immersed in, and to appreciate the people and the earth in which surrounds us and REALLY actually matter in our lives (that was quite deep 😂).
I believe that it is incumbent on us all and especially immigrants like myself to be respectful and to learn as much as we can about the culture of the Tangata Whenua and Te Reo is essential to this understanding.