Authors of educational children's book Korero Mai held an interactive session for kids at the Rotorua Library as part of Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori.

Molly Chattell and Jenny Chapman wrote the book to celebrate New Zealand's three official languages - Māori, English and sign.

More than 60 children and their caregivers packed into the kids' zone yesterday to see and hear the authors read the book.

The children learnt how to say words in all three languages from hello - kia ora to milk - miraka.


They then got to practise all three languages as they sung nursery rhymes in Māori and English while dancing their way through some of the signs.

"The research shows as a child is learning a new language their brain is growing," Mrs Chapman said.

"Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori is important to us as an opportunity for children to learn."

There were 500 copies of the book printed and Rotorua parents snapped up the last 19.

"It's just an extra tool, something to think about when we're teaching our children," Mrs Chattell said.

Mother of two, with another on the way, Marianne Mostert said what the authors had done with the book was great.

"My mother is deaf, so she teaches my kids sign language anyway," she said.

"It's amazing to see what my daughter has picked up, she's picked up quite a few things already."

Mrs Mostert said she would be interested in teaching her children te reo.

"I think it should be compulsory in schools, there is nothing to lose by learning it," she said.

"It's an important part of our culture".