Tane Māhuta Has a Forest

A review of Tane Māhuta Has a Forest by Rebecca Larsen

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by Rebecca Larsen

The moment I introduced Tane Māhuta Has a Forest (Imagination Press) to our tamariki, I had an intrigued audience.

They recognised the adventurous characters Pūkeko, Kiwi and Hoiho from Row, Row, Row Your Waka, a well-loved CD story at our kindergarten.

When the familiar tune of “Old MacDonald” started to play, the tamariki began swaying along. In the story, the three friends set off to explore the forest, and take us all along on the journey. We moved along with the music, stretching tall like a kauri tree, dancing like pīwaiwaka, and meeting other creatures along the way.

All up – a wonderfully illustrated bilingual pukapuka with a catchy tune that had us all singing along in no time. It is such a fun way to practice our
te reo Māori, become familiar with Tāne Mahuta, god of the forest, and to get our bodies moving. We love that it also has a version written entirely in te reo Māori.

Of course as soon as the book ended, the calls rang out “anō, anō!”

I’ve lost count of how many times we have enjoyed this pukapuka. Highly recommended, it’s a five-star review from us!

Reviewed by Anna McMillan and daughter Frankie

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