Our Teams

In 2023, our teachers researched our local area and uncovered many connections between us and our rich history and heritage. One connection discovered was Manukapua, Cloud of Birds.

Manukapua is believed to be the landing site of the ancestral waka Māhuhu-ki-te-rangi. For generations, the waters around Manukapua and Taporapora have provided locals with a rich selection of seafood such as flounder, snapper, pipi, and mussels. The land is home to many native and migratory birds which live and nest in the dunes. In honour of our precious land, sea and sky, Learning Teams are named after local birds and Houses and Whānau Classes after native trees.

Years 0/1

Years 2/3

Year 4

Years 5/6

Years 7/8

Houses and Whānau Classes

The kōwhai tree's bright yellow flowers come out in spring, attracting tūi and kererū to the sweet nectre hidden in the flowers. Kōwhai gets its name from the Te Reo Māori word for yellow - kōwhai.


Te ura o te Kōwhai, or the glow of the Kōwhai, is a common saying in Māori. A strong part of the Māori culture and tradition, it features within songs, folklore and legends. As a Kōwhai-turanga ora or Tree of Life in the Waikato, it refers to authority and powers held by people to whom we look to for help and life.

The pōhutukawa tree's beautiful crimson flowers come into bloom in summer and has become an integral part of Christmas in New Zealand.


The 800-year-old pōhutukawa perched on the clifftop at Cape Rēinga is of great significance to many. For Māori this tree is known as ‘the place of leaping’. It is believed that from this spot the spirits of the dead begin their journey to their traditional homeland by leaping off the headland and climbing down its roots.


 The tōtara is one of the giants of the forest and can live 1000 years.

The wood from the tōtara tree is prized for its carving properties, and is the primary wood used in Māori carving. It was also the main wood used to make waka due to its relatively light weight, long, straight lengths, and the natural oils in the wood that help prevent rotting. 

In larger tōtara waka, three or more sections were laced together and took at least a year to make using stone tools.


Rimu is a treasured tree which has many uses, from the making of spears, pigment for moko, ingredients for medicine and building. Its red berries play an important role in the breeding cycle of kākāpō which only breeds in years when the trees are full of fruit.

Its gum, sap and wood are also red in colour with the stories of the forest.  In Māori tradition, they got their colour when the trees absorbed the blood of the monster Tunaroa who was slain by Māui