By Ahinata Kaitai-Mullane | Posted: Wednesday January 1, 2014
On June 6th, a small group of Logan Park students including myself went to Invercargill to the Nga Manu Korero regional competition at the Civic Centre.
Jacobi Kohu-Morris, Emma Samuels and I spoke after weeks of preparing and practising. Everyone speaking at the competition was exceptional and the exposure to culture and language was amazing.
There were an astounding number of competitors which consequently meant that the junior and senior speakers had to run at the same time in different rooms. Because Emma and I were speaking at the same time Jacobi was doing his impromptu speech, to our disappointment, we were unable to watch. We were though, able to watch and support Jacobi as he did his prepared speech about education being a tool.
Jacobi won both his impromptu and prepared speeches, meaning he and a small group of others, including myself, got the opportunity to go to nationals. Emma and I didn't place but received really good feedback from the judges. Emma spoke in Te Reo with the topic “I am the iPad, the iPad is me”. I felt she was an exceptional speaker, her comfort on stage and the level of energy in her speech proved the truly high standard all speakers performed with. I spoke about being Maori and how it is taonga.
I can say there are few moments in my life that have been scarier that standing up and talking in front of a crowd like that, the sense of achievement that followed was blissful though.
I would like to thank everyone that made that journey possible, Matua Tip, Runa, Karen, Memorie, Katalina, Briana, Melorie, Ngapera and Ngawai, who supported and Jacobi, Emma and all the other speakers for their contributions. It was a wonderful experience and I would do it again.