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The annual Te Rangitawaea Festival celebrates the unique creative and innovative ICT/ digital media achievements of 18 Ngati Porou East Coast schools from Potaka to Kaiti.

The festival originates from a Te Rangitawaea strategic planning day held in December 2003. Participants at the hui agreed that the vision of Te Rangitawaea be To maintain Ngati Porou East Coast schools at the forefront of Education innovation in ICT. Accepting this vision the Education team agreed that the work being done in schools be showcased through a Te Rangitawaea Festival. The festival would also set an annual benchmark for excellence in ICT within Ngati Porou/East Coast schools.

Planning for the 2004 inaugural festival began in Term One with all schools being advised to register. In planning for the programme cognisance was taken of the overarching goals of the partnership and whenever possible a number of outcomes were integrated into the Festival:

  • Raising student achievements
  • Engaging whanau/hapu
  • Matauranga Ngati Porou
  • Integration of ICT across curriculum

Efforts to incorporate elements of Matauranga Ngati Porou into the festival was made by encouraging students to enter their ICT projects on the theme of, Nati by Nature. The inaugural festival was held in Ruatoria on Wednesday August 25th which attracted participation from all schools. The festival was held in two venues. During the day the Manutahi site of Ngata Memorial College hosted an ICT Expo, ICT workshop and an ICT Team Challenge. In the evening at Uepohatu marae the festival culminated with the Nati Awards ceremony. 130 competitive entries were received that year for the Nati Awards competition. Whakapapa was also incorporated in the naming of the Supreme Awards presented at the Nati Awards ceremony: Te Rangitawaea, Roro, Ponapatukia, Whakaatakura & Whakaarakura.


The Nati Awards is an Oscar like celebration where schools submit entries in a range of categories and compete for a Nati Award. Schools spend several months creating their entries based on a predominant theme but open to a wide interpretation.

This year the theme is "Nati Hangarau-Nati Technology: The Past, the Present & the Future." Previous Festival themes include:

  • Nati by Nature (2004)  
  • Nga Whakatauaki o Ngati Porou (2005)
  • Te Momo Nati (2006)
  • Future Nati (2007)
  • Nati Putaiao/Nati Science (2008)
  • Nga Pakiwaitara o Ngati Porou (2009)
  • Nga Haka me Nga Waiata o Ngati Porou (2010)
  • Kaitiaki- In Our Hands (2011)
  • A Tatau Korero: Our Stories, Our Voices (2012) 
  • Nga Taonga Tuku Iho: The Treasures of our Ancestors (2013)

Entries are in English, Maori or both.

Independent judging panels are convened for each category. Judges have expertise in the specific field and are, or have affiliations to Ngati Porou. Only the best three entries from each category make it to the Awards evening for showing.

The categories for the awards are:

  • Short Film
  • Documentary
  • Music Video
  • Advertisement
  • Original Music Composition
  • Graphic Design Poster
  • Stop Motion Animation
  • Graphic Animation
  • Digital Photo
  • Radio Jingle
  • Radio Documentary
  • Best Script-Combined Jr & Sr
  • Best Actor & Actress  -Combined Jr & Sr

Each category is divided into two sections to accommodate the wide age range of students ( 5-18 year olds).

  • Junior Section: Years 1-8
  • Senior Section: Years 9-13

We also include a section for our Year 1-3 students called Pipi Nati, which comprises 4 categories: Advertisement, Photo Slide Show, Digital Photo & Animation.

Thus there are 24 Nati Awards and 4 Pipi Nati in total to be won on the evening. Natis are much sought after and bring immense pride to students in having their achievements recognised.


In addition to the Nati Awards, there are six Supreme awards given out on the night. These recognise excellence in particular areas. These awards are all named after prominent tipuna in Ngati Porou whakapapa. They are awarded for:

  • Whakatauaki - Junior ICT Team Challenge
  • Whakaarakura - Senior ICT Team Challenge
  • Ponapatukia - Best Te Reo Entry
  • Roro - Best Junior School overall
  • Te Rangitawaea - Best Senior School overall
  • Apirana Turupa Ngata - Best ICT Expo Site