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The Ka Mate Haka

  • Activity types: vocabulary, learning to dance the Haka!
  • Vocabulary: Parts of the body.
  • Level: Elementary.
  • Note:The Ka Mate Haka is a traditional ancestral dance from the Māori people of New Zealand. It is a posture dance performed by a group, with vigorous movements and stamping of the feet with rhythmically shouted accompaniment. The New Zealand rugby team’s practice of performing a Ka mate Haka before their matches has made the dance more widely known around the world. (wikpedia)
    James Joyce saw the All Blacks (the rugby team) performing the Haka in Paris in 1925, and included a version in Finnegan’s Wake.

Worksheet written by Simone Kate Svampa, Alba (CN)

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3 comments to Haka

  • avatar admin

    From the author:

    “I have been doing this lesson all this week. I have 11 3rd year intermediate classes. They all loved it!

    I noted that the Kamate haka is used for welcoming. For example when Queen Elizabeth came to NZ the haka was performed for her, not really used for war cries.

    I also read that the original haka had the jump at the end but that this was not correct and has since been changed. In fact you can see the difference in recent All Black hakas, they don’t jump at the end.

    I also mentioned that the haka during the World Cup held in NZ was a special new haka used only for that event (Some of my kids were quite on the ball!!!)

    Cheers, Simone”

  • avatar admin

    From Tracy Sinclair, ELI’s Italian Area Manager:

    “PLEASE remember that it is HIGHLY OFFENSIVE for a female to do the HAKA!!!
    I have a degree in Maori, I AM MAORI and I am not allowed to do the haka!!!!
    It is REALLY important to New Zealanders that people understand what the haka before the game symbolizes.”

  • avatar Simone Kate Svampa

    Thanks for your comment Tracey. Could you clarify why the White Sox and other women’s international teams perform the Haka before international matches? Is it a different Haka? Are there some parts that women do and some that they mustn’t?

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