1 Jul 2014

NZers to learn 50 kupu in 50 weeks

8:35 pm on 1 July 2014

New Zealanders are about to learn 50 kupu, or Maori words, over 50 weeks.

The Maori Language Commission launched its theme for Te Wiki o Te Reo Maori on Tuesday, which is centred on teaching vocabulary.

Maori language week runs from 21 July.

The various kupu include the Maori name for Christchurch - Ōtautahi, and totally brand new words such as iPapa for iPad.

Pita Paraone, the interim chief executive of Te Taura Whiri i Te Reo Maori and former New Zealand First MP, said the commission wanted to make sure the words were practical and relevant.

He said one of the challenges was making sure that new words were found for the technology that most rangatahi were using.

Mr Paraone said the commission wanted to ensure that Te Reo Maori kept pace with all of the modern vocabulary also being used in English.

te reo sign

Maori language week runs from 21 July. Photo: PHOTO NZ