The Concept of Manakitanga
Manakitanga is a Māori term that means extending aroha (love and compassion). This can be in acts of kindness, helping others, caring for our community and our environment. Manakitanga is about uplifting people, encouraging them and nurturing positive relationships with an understanding that we are all part of one whānau.
It is connected to our own identity and our own culture. Yet, it is also about fostering and supporting other people’s mana, culture and identity as individuals. It is about respecting and embracing other cultures, which requires compassion and empathy. It requires us to view others as equal and reminds us that everyone’s voice matters and should be respected.
As an international school, this concept is important to us because it encourages us to think about how we treat and interact with others in a diversity community. It reminds us that we are who we are because of the people around us. It allows us to reflect on how we can protect and support people in our wider community. It reminds us to teach positive values and aim to develop children into thoughtful and mindful citizens of the world who understand their place in the community and appreciate that others have a place in it too.
We nurture manakitanga by developing character, teaching morals and promoting positive values, such as respect, integrity, honesty and compassion. We nurture manakitanga by getting our children involved in community service projects. We nurture manakitanga by promoting wellbeing and mental health. We nurture manakitanga by helping our students stay grounded within their own culture while also thinking from a global perspective and learning about other cultures. We nurture manakitanga by being kaitiaki (guardians) of the sky, land and sea and by aiming for a more sustainable future where the environment is cared for and protected.
By Tim Maitland
If you want to receive your copy of our short publication on -
“5 Māori Philosophies for Raising Children with Strong Values in a Globalized World” - please fill out your email here and we’ll get it to you.