Now that we are all past that initial "awkwardness" of having a go at a new language, it is time to have some fun.

My colleagues who put together the video series for Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori - which can be viewed on the website - had the same idea in mind, using humour and tikanga to break down stigma around te reo.

One video tackles the touchy subject of pronunciation, and how/how not to approach someone who is struggling to roll their r's. Another looks at the "silent" Māori language, using only eyebrows, while another dives into the thorny area of dialects.

Their idea was that some people were scared off from te reo and Māori culture.


But as producer Allan George (Ngāti Kahungunu) said: "Māori culture is beautiful, yet funny."

With that humour in mind here are some phrases I like to drop into kōrero every now and then, known as kīwaha, or colloquial phrases.

"Ao noa, pō noa", one of most universal, means "all day, all night", or "24/7".

It is a nice and humble (cheeky) response when you get a bit of a compliment.

When someone says to me, "Kia ora, Michael. Awesome work on the reo blog!", I respond, "Ao noa, pō noa, e hoa."

Another confident expression is "kāore e kore", which means "without a doubt".

Millennials might like to throw around, "mea rawa ake", or "nek minnit".

If you want to compliment someone, try "pākia te ringa", or "high five".


Give those a go, and have some fun with te reo.

Hei āpōpō, kāore e kore.