Award-winning author and publisher of the children’s Te Reo Sing Along series Sharon Holt had Gore youngsters up and dancing at her show last week.
Holt, of Auckland, hosted shows in Lumsden, Mataura and Gore.
She was really happy with how the shows went.
“We had twice as many as we were expecting,” she said
“It was good to see the children joining in.”
Holt started writing and publishing the books five and a-half years ago, when she realised there were not many resources to help children learn Te Reo Maori.
She believed it was important for children to learn another language from a young age.
“I think we are doing kids a disservice not bringing them up bilingual.”
The brain developed differently if children were bilingual, she said.
“It opens the brain up to so much more.”
Holt said reviving Te Reo Maori was important.
Teaching children Te Reo Maori started from a parent’s desire to do so, she said.
“It is quite tricky if they don’t have an idea of where to start.”
That was why she had started hosting pronunciation lessons for parents and teachers.
When speaking Te Reo Maori it was important to have correct pronunciation because once people started pronouncing words wrongly it was hard to break the habit, she said.
Holt’s husband Alan help bring her books to life.
Parents said they loved that there was a man in the show, she said.
“He gets the boys involved.”
This is the second time Holt has toured Southland.
Southern Reap had organised the tour and provided funding.
“Without them we wouldn’t be able to do it,” she said.