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Ministry of Education Pasifika and ESOL resources

Pasifika Resources |  ESOL resources |  Key teacher resources that include ESOL information |  Websites |  References

Pasifika Resources

Pasifika languages curriculum statements and guidelines

Pasifika language resources

A selection of resources focused on the pedagogy of Pasifika language teaching

Student reading materials in Pasifika languages

The Tupu series provides reading materials in Sāmoan, Tongan, Cook Islands Māori, Niue language, and Tokelauan, which include books and audio recordings suitable for early childhood, primary, and secondary school learners. Although no longer being published, it is still worthwhile looking for these books in your school resource room. The Folauga series provides students’ reading material in Sāmoan mainly for the primary area but some issues can be used in secondary. Folauga and the Tupu series are both accompanied by teachers’ notes that are linked to the relevant curriculum guidelines and reflect best practice principles for language learning.

The Pasifika songbooks and accompanying CDs

Fātuga Fa‘asāmoa i Aotearoa: Sāmoan Songs (2000); ‘E Au ‘Īmene Kūki ‘Airani nō Tātou i Aotearoa nei: Cook Island Songs (2002); Hiva, Ta‘anga, mo e Himī ‘i loto Nu‘u Sila: Tongan Songs (2003); and Tau Lologo Niue ma e Tau Aoga i Niu Silani: Niuean Songs (2005). Order these from Down the Back of the Chair.

ESOL resources

ESOL Online

A site for teachers to respond to the needs of their English language learners.

English Language Learning Progressions 

The English Language Learning Progressions (ELLP) explain what ESOL specialists and mainstream teachers need to know about English language learners. They will help teachers to choose content, vocabulary, and tasks that are appropriate to each learner's age, stage, and language-learning needs. This may include learners for whom English is a first language but who would benefit from additional language support.

Working with English language learners: A handbook for schools 

helps primary and secondary schools to develop and implement policies and practices that support ESOL students and their families and teachers.

Making Language and Learning Work DVDs

These DVDs show how to integrate subject-area learning (including maths, science, English, social studies) into language learning.

English Language Intensive Programme (ELIP) Primary resource

this is designed to support ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) programmes in Years 1-6. It is not intended to be a whole programme in itself, but provides guidelines for teachers of ESOL programmes by selecting some text examples, language outcomes, and language learning focus points at three phases of English language learning.

English Language Intensive Programme (ELIP) Years 7–13 resource

this is designed to support ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) programmes for students in years 7–13. It is not intended to be a whole programme in itself, but provides guidelines for teachers of ESOL programmes by selecting some language outcomes and language learning focus points at three phases of English language learning.

Supporting English Language Learners 2014 (PowerPoint 4MB)

This recently updated ESOL Resources PowerPoint will enable schools to become familiar with the range of materials available to assist English language learners. The Ministry ESOL resources are organised into the following categories:

  • Literacy teaching and learning documents
  • ESOL funding and programme development
  • Programme provision and monitoring
  • Professional development
  • Supporting diversity and community links
  • Additional resources and online links

Supporting English Language Learning in Primary Schools (SELLIPS)

A resource for mainstream and ESOL teachers consisting of four booklets for different year levels (years 1–8).

English language intensive programme: years 0–6 and years 7–13

Reading resources for English language learners

A selection of useful reading resources to encourage fluency and comprehension in ESOL learners.

Key teacher resources that include ESOL information

The following resources include valuable information that is relevant for ESOL teaching and learning:

Effective Literacy Practice in Years 1 to 4 and Effective Literacy Practice in Years 5 to 8 have specific advice and suggestions about meeting the needs of English-language learners. The section on pages 127–130 of the latter is particularly useful.

Effective Literacy Strategies in Years 9 to 13: A Guide for Teachers is a handbook designed to support secondary school teachers in all subject areas as they learn and teach literacy and thinking strategies to meet the needs of their students. While the book is intended to benefit all teachers of secondary students, teachers with ESOL students will find it particularly useful.

The resource packages Guided Reading (a book, two videos, and a CD for teachers of years 1 to 4) and Guided Reading: Years 5 to 8 (a book and video) explain the use of guided reading as an effective approach for primary school teachers to use with all their students, including ESOL students. The sections on meeting diverse needs and the case studies are especially relevant.


Websites with Pasifika language materials or other Pasifika material:

TKI website 

TKI has links to a variety of useful material for teachers.

Pasifika Digital Legends

One of the collections on TKI – Pasifika Education Community, consists of a collection of traditional Pasifika stories retold in English and Pasifika languages by New Zealand students.

ESOL Online 

ESOL Online as a great deal of material that is useful to both mainstream teachers of Pasifika students and primary and secondary ESOL teachers. It also has specific sections for mainstream primary and secondary teachers including: 

  • bilingual achievement certificates to recognise student achievement in various languages, including several Pasifika languages.
  • readings for secondary teachers about matters relating to Pasifika students. The site also has readings for primary teachers.


The NCEA on TKI website provides resources with Pasifika content in the subject areas language, mathematics, visual arts, social studies, and art history.


StudyIt is a site for NCEA mathematics, science, and English students. Students can email experts and get study and exam advice and help with revision and practice. They can also exchange views and get encouragement from other students through the forum.

Canterbury Pasifika 

The Canterbury Pasifika education page is a site where Pasifika teachers can share information and resources and generally communicate with one another.

Living Heritage 

Living Heritage is an online bilingual initiative that enables New Zealand schools to develop and publish an online resource based on a heritage treasure in their community. The process incorporates the use of ICT across a range of curriculum areas. Participation in Living Heritage is free to all New Zealand schools and open to all age groups.

World Factbook

This United States government website features maps and brief descriptions of the geography, people, government, economy, communications, language, and other aspects of Pasifika nations.

One Samoana – Notebook: Samoa 

This site provides links to Sāmoan communities around the world. The focus is to provide information about the arts, crafts, language, culture, and history of Sāmoa and Sāmoan people, and about current events.

Samoan language 

This page has some everyday Samoan language resources. It includes short vocabulary lists of some common Sāmoan words, the colours, and a few borrowed words from English.

Samoan topics

This website has links to a range of topics, including language, history, maps, images, literature, and arts,.

Sāmoa government 

The website of the government of Sāmoa.


Alchin, R. (2002). "The world of ferns". Connected 3. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Baker, C. (2006). Foundations of bilingual education and bilingualism. (4th Ed.). Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters.

Coxon, E., Anae, M., Mara, D., Wendt-Samu, T., & Finau, C. (2002).  Literature review on Pacific education issues: Final report. Wellington: Ministry of Education. 

Cummins, J. (1991). "Empowering culturally and linguistically diverse students with learning problems". ERIC Digest #E500. Retrieved 8 March 2006 from http://ericec.org/digests/e500.html

Ellis, R. (2003). Task-based language learning and teaching. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Franken, M., May, S., & McComish, J. (2005). Pasifika languages research and guidelines project: Literature review. Hamilton: Wilf Malcolm Institute of Educational Research, University of Waikato.

Gibbons, P. (2002). Scaffolding language, scaffolding learning: Teaching second language learners in the mainstream classroom. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Holmes, J. (2001). Introduction to sociolinguistics (2nd ed.). London: Longman.

Jones, A. (1991). At school I’ve got a chance: Culture/privilege: Pacific Islands and Pākehā girls at school. Palmerston North: Dunmore Press.

Mallon, S. (2002). Sāmoan art and artists: O Measina a Sāmoa. Nelson: Craig Potton Publishing.

Mataio, M. (2002). "My Dad's Raw Fish". School Journal 2.4.02.

Ministry of Education (2007a). English language learning progressions. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2007b). Tongan in the New Zealand Curriculum. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2007c). Vagahau Niue in the New Zealand Curriculum. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2007d). ESOL resources for schools, teachers, and school communities. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2006). Effective literacy practice in Years 5 to 8. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2005). ESOL progress assessment guidelines. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2004). Effective literacy strategies in Years 9 to 13. A guide for teachers. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2004).  ESOL funding assessment guidelines. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2003a). Effective literacy practice in Years 1 to 4. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2003b).  Quality Teaching for Diverse Students in Schooling: Best Evidence Synthesis. Wellington: Author 

Ministry of Education (2003c).  The Complexity of Community and Family Influences on Children’s Achievement in New Zealand: Best Evidence Synthesis. Wellington: Author

Ministry of Education (2003d).   The New Zealand Curriculum exemplars. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd and the Learning Centre Trust of New Zealand. 

Ministry of Education (2003e). English language intensive programme: Years 7–13 resource. Auckland: Author.

Ministry of Education (2003f).  Reading Literacy in New Zealand: Final Results from the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) and the Repeat of the 1990–1991 Reading Literacy Survey (10-Year Trends) for Year 5 Students. Wellington: Research Division, Author.

Ministry of Education (2003g). Hiva, Ta‘anga, mo e Himī ‘i loto Nu‘u Sila: Tongan songs. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2002). ‘E Au ‘Īmene Kūki ‘Airani nō Tātou i Aotearoa nei: Cook Island songs. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2001). Figure it out – Gala: Mathematics curriculum support: Levels 2–3. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (2000). Fātuga Fa‘asāmoa i Aotearoa: Sāmoan songs. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (1996).  Exploring language: A handbook for teachers. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Education (1993). Reciprocal teaching: Extending reading strategies. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Ministry of Justice (2000). The history of New Zealand’s Pacific connection. Wellington: Author. 

Moore, G. (2002). "The bat detective". Connected 1. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd.

Naiman, N., Frohlich, M., Stern, H. H., & Tedesco, A. (1996). The good language learner. Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters.

Nakhid, C. (2003). "Comparing Pasifika students’ perceptions of their schooling with the perception of non-Pasifika teachers using the ‘mediated dialogue’ as a research methodology". New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies, 38, 207–226.

Osteoporosis New Zealand (2001). Choice action. Wellington: Author.

Sachar, L. (2000). Holes. London: HarperCollins Publishers.

Swain, M. (1998). "Focus on form through conscious reflection". In C. Doughty & J. Williams, (Eds.), Focus on form in classroom second language acquisition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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Vygotsky, L. (1986). Language in thought. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Woolfolk Hoy, A. (2004, April). What do teachers need to know about self-efficacy? Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA. Retrieved 3 January 2006.