Sunday, December 9, 2007


Also this term, we had a Myths and Legends Contract. We had to read as many myths and legends as we could, and then complete an activity on most of the stories we had read. I read many legends - here are the names of some of them.

Legends I read:

1. Maui and the Sun
2. Maui and the fingers of fire
3. The great fish of Maui
4. Paikea and the whale
5. Rona and the Moon

6. Pania of the Reef
7. Uenuku and the Mist Maiden
8. The Kuia and her faithful dog
9. Battle of the Mountains
10. The Legend of Creation
11. Hatupatu and the Birdwoman
12. The Legend of Hinemoa and Tutanekai
13. The Legend of Waikaremoana
14. The Lone fairy of Pirongia
15. Rata and the Totara Tree
16. The Legend of Maouo
17. Kupe and the great octopus of Muturangi
18. Pourangahua and the great bird of Ruakapanga

Youtube movies:

Maui and the Sun ~

Hatupatu and the Birdwoman ~

Activities I completed:

Task: Write an interview with the main character in the legend. An interview with Maui, the one who asked for his grandmother’s fingers of fire.

How did you feel after you first met your grandmother?

Perhaps I felt a little bit scared: she’s quite intimidating, but I soon got over that when she agreed to give me one of her precious fire fingers.

Why did you put out the fire in the first place?

I wanted to know how to make fire, and by putting it out, we would have to find out how to make fire.

Why did you make no attempt to save your first fire finger from the river when you fell in?

The fire fingers made a lovely sizzling sound when they were in the water, and at the time I didn’t realize that water put out fire. This I discovered later, which helped me to understand how to make fire.

How did you feel when you knew that you must go back for yet another fire finger?

A little scared, actually, because each time I came back, she got a little bit angrier. By the time I had to take her last finger of fire, I knew that she wouldn’t tolerate it, but I didn’t know what she was going to do to me, which was worse! I dreaded this moment!

Did everyone have faith in you while you retrieved the fire fingers?

My brothers have always been quite jealous of me - especially now. But I think they know me well enough by now to predict that I would succeed again. Everyone else was just hoping that I would be OK and hopefully come back with a fire finger or the secret of fire, which I did.

What happened to your grandmother?

When I was hiding in the tree as a bird, my grandmother returned to her cave. I suppose she is still in her cave, but she was very old, and she didn’t have any warmth (because I took her fire fingers) so she has probably passed away now.

Do you think that you will be seeing her again?

Once again, as in your previous question, she is most likely to have died already, so no, I won’t expect to see her again. But even if she was still living in her cave, I don’t think that I would want to encounter her once more (or her anger!).

How did you escape when she was chasing you, how far behind was she, and did she see you turn into a bird?

As she chased me, I transformed into a bird and hid in a tree. I don’t think she saw me because she was obviously wondering where I had gone, and she was quite far behind me, because I got a head start and I am a faster runner. ©


Task: Find a song relating to the legend you have read.

The Great Fish of Maui
(We don’t know how lucky we are!)

At the dawn of the day, in the great Southern Ocean
Where the world’s greatest fish was being landed
And the boat they were pulling it into was sinking
And the sea was quite lumpy, and the weather was foul
And the bloke with the map was as pissed as an owl
And the boys called out “Maui, ya clown, let it go”
In the noise he reached down for his grandmother’s jawbone
and he winked at his mates and he said
“Boys, we don’t know how lucky we are”
“I have a feeling I have stumbled on something substantial.”

We don’t know how lucky we are
We don’t know how lucky we are
We don’t know how lucky we are
We don’t know how lucky we are

So when things are looking really bad
And you’re thinking of giving it a way
Remember, New Zealand’s a cracker
And I reckon come what may
If things get appallingly bad
And we’re all under constant attack
Remember, we want to see good clean ball
And for god’s sakes, feed your backs
We don’t how fortunate we are to have that place
We don’t know how propitious are the circumstances.

We don’t know how lucky we are
We don’t know how lucky we are
We don’t know how lucky we are
We don’t know how lucky we are


Task: Identify the different parts of the story.

(Click on the table to enlarge it!)

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