A kaumatua in Nelson is drawing inspiration from tamariki expressing themselves in Maori - and it has restored his hope and confidence for the future of the Maori language.
Tahi Takao, in his early 80s and of Ngai Tuhoe descent, has been living in Whakatu (Nelson) for more than 20 years and says over that time he has seen many elders die and take their valuable knowledge with them.
In te reohe says that during the opening of the region's first kura kaupapa last month it was such a heartfelt feeling to see the next generation of Maori language speakers continue the legacy laid down by those kaumatua nearly three decades ago.
Hei tāna, kua whakatinanahia te kaupapa, hei aha? hei painga mō ngā mokopuna, kōhungahunga huri noa i tēnei rohe o Te Tau Ihu.
Ēngari, ko te pai te kite atu i ō tātou rangatahi i ngā hākinakina Pākehā te āhua o ētahi, ēngari kua whakaputa mai nei wā rātou kōrero i runga i tō tāua reo, ka miharo ki ā rātou.
Mr Takao says the kura kaupapa is now a reality, which benefits the new generation throughout the top of the South Island.
He says it is wonderful to see young people using the language even in their sporting activities and adapting it to their environment.