An educational truck aimed at teaching people about New Zealand's history has arrived in Hawke's Bay.

The Tuia Mātauranga roadshow is being run as an educational component to Tuia-Encounters 250, the commemoration of James Cook's arrival in New Zealand.

Programme Manager Thalia Hargreaves said half the truck is dedicated to Pasifika voyaging, with the other half looking at European settlement and New Zealand's dual heritage.

There is also a wall dedicated to "our shared future", where people can look at what is important to them, and their hopes for their community going forward.


16000 people have already engaged with the truck at previous locations, and Hargreaves said 500 people were expected to visit while the truck is parked in Hawke's Bay, along with 360 school students.

As well as stories told on the walls of the truck, people can learn using augmented reality, and there is also a virtual reality component.

A kuaka, or bar-tailed godwit, guides people through an activity book, the bird chosen as it was used by Pacific people to guide them to New Zealand, the bird flying 12,000km from Alaska to New Zealand each year.

All resources are in both te reo Māori and English.

Hargreaves said there is only so much information they can fit in a truck, and people are encouraged to share their stories with the Tuia Mātauranga programme.

The truck is scheduled to stop at 24 locations, in some including many of the places the Tuia-Encounters 250 flotilla is stopping.

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While the future of the truck itself is uncertain after the commemorations, the programme will be wrapped up to be taught in schools, following the government's recent announcement that New Zealand history will be compulsory in schools.


She said her experience travelling around the country with the programme is that people are ready to have a conversation about New Zealand's history, even though that conversation is not always easy.

The truck is parked at the Ātea a Rangi on November 12 and 13.

Ātea a Rangi Educational Trust co-ordinator Michelle Smith says the star dome and roadshow will give schools, community and whānau a stronger learning experience about history.

"There are lots of kōrero that have been brought back to life with the commemorations of Tuia 250, from traditional navigation to local incidents with the Endeavour."

The Tuia-Encounters 250 flotilla will end in Hawke's Bay, the closing ceremony is held in Mahia in mid-December (dates subject to weather).

A commemorative event will be held in Ahuriri, with a Waka Hourua called before it sails to Mahia to take part in the closing ceremony.

Those unable to attend the Roadshow can download the Tuia Mātauranga Books and other resources from the Tuia Mātauranga webpage: