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Tālofa, ‘O ā Mai ‘Oe?


na tūsia e Fatulatetele T. Tolo

This story supports Matā‘upu 2 (Tālofa lava/Formal greetings).

For schools, ECE centres and education providers wishing to order this storybook go to Down the back of the chair and enter item number 33632 into the search box.

Text features

The language features of this story include:

  • the comic-book format
  • a visual story (the dog following Alexander to school, though the boy is unaware of it, and his mother trying to find the dog)
  • formal and informal greetings, for example, Tālofa, Alexander [formal greeting], Tālofa lava, lau susuga Mrs Tanielu [formal greeting from a young person to an adult], Mālō, Alex [everyday greeting], Mālō, suga [informal greeting from a peer to a female], Mālō, sole [informal greeting from a peer to a male]
  • the repeated question, ‘O ā mai ‘oe?, ‘O ā mai ‘oulua?, ‘O ā mai ‘outou?
  • personal pronouns, for example, ‘oe [one person], ‘oulua [two people], ‘outou [three or more people]
  • possessive pronouns, for example, o‘u, lau, lo‘u, la‘u
  • the new colloquialism Seki ā …/the best, that’s cool, which is commonly used by young people and increasingly by adults too.

The cultural features of this story include:

  • the need to use respectful language when speaking to an older person.

Supports and challenges

Students who have completed Matā‘upu 1 and Matā‘upu 2 of Mua Ō! may find it easy to:

  • identify the different types of greetings that are used between different people
  • identify the question ‘O ā mai ‘oe? and the personal pronouns that are used with it.

These students may find it challenging to:

  • identify all of the different possessive pronouns that are used
  • understand some new vocabulary, phrases, and sentences (these are in the book’s glossary or the glossary of Mua Ō!).

Planning: Teaching as inquiry

Consider your students’ interests and their ability to read in gagana Sāmoa at this level and choose activities that provide appropriate content and support. Assess and reflect on the effectiveness of your teaching and the students’ learning, then plan next steps.

Curriculum links and links to Mua Ō! An Introduction to Gagana Sāmoa

The New Zealand Curriculum: Learning Languages

Students can understand and use familiar expressions and everyday vocabulary.
 (levels 1 and 2)

Students will recognise that the target language is organised in particular ways.
 (levels 1 and 2)

Ta‘iala mo le Gagana Sāmoa: The Gagana Sāmoa Guidelines

Students will:

  • give and respond to greetings, farewells … (level 1)
  • recognise and express fa‘aaloalo in a variety of contexts (level 1)
  • make connections with known culture(s) (level 1).

Mua Ō! An Introduction to Gagana Sāmoa

Matā‘upu 2

Students will be able to use formal greetings appropriately.

A possible teaching goal

Students will be able to distinguish between everyday, formal, and informal greetings and between singular and plural greetings and use them appropriately.

Click here to go to Activities.