Heremana te Kōpūtōtara Mātauranga Huangō was funded by Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori (the Māori Language Commission), and is the newest resource produced by ARFNZ to address asthma inequities for Māori.

“Heremana te Kōpūtōtara Mātauranga Huangō is an amazing tool and will allow us to deliver essential, free asthma education to kura, kaiako and tamariki all across Aotearoa,” says ARFNZ Chief Executive Letitia Harding. “Asthma education plays a big role in reducing asthma-related hospitalisations. We hope the Classroom will give tamariki and their whānau, the knowledge they need to better manage their asthma and live full, healthy lives.”

The rates of asthma amongst Māori remain disproportionately high, with ARFNZ’s research showing that 1 in 6 Māori have asthma, compared to 1 in 8 for the general population. These statistics are also high for Māori children, with more than 16% receiving medication for asthma last year, compared to 12% for all New Zealand children.

The Digital Classroom is an animated online version of the ARFNZ’s live, interactive musical show, Heremana te Kōpūtōtara, which travels the country teaching primary students about asthma, asthma triggers, how to treat asthma and what to do in an asthma emergency, in te reo Māori.

“Last year this show was performed for 1,781 tamariki and kaiako, despite disruptions caused by Covid-19. Transforming the messages of the show into an interactive, digital classroom experience will make it even more accessible,” says Research and Education Manager Joanna Turner.

Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori Chief Executive Ngahiwi Apanui says the Commission is proud to support the work of ARFNZ in providing te reo asthma resources. “The release of the digital te reo classroom is a real milestone and will ensure so many more young people receive this important korero.” The Commission also funded a number of live performances of Heremana te Kōpūtōtara to kura in Wellington last year.

Schools can register their interest on the website The Foundation grants access to teachers to 'unlock' the Digital Classroom for their class to begin the learning. Schools get access to the Digital Classroom for six months, and it can be viewed multiple times. Once successfully completed, the class receives an ‘Asthma Aware’ certificate of achievement to proudly display on their classroom wall.

The Heremana te Kōpūtōtara Mātauranga Huangō goes live today. To find out more and to register visit:

ARFNZ also provides the Sailor the Pufferfish show and an online Sailor Digital Classroom in English.



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