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Book Teaches Waitangi Day Tradition to Chinese Speakers


Bi-Lingual Picture Book Teaches Waitangi Day Tradition to Chinese Speaking Youngsters

A new book for children that teaches the meaning and significance of Waitangi Day has been published in a bilingual edition, thanks to New Zealand Chinese Language Week (23 – 29 September 2018).

William’s Waitangi Day, a picture book aimed at early readers, tells the story of Chinese boy William who lives in New Zealand and first hears about Waitangi Day at school. Unclear on its significance, William’s friends tell him all about it. William hears about the Te Tiriti O Waitangi, finds out what a waka is, and learns about a hangi. The story concludes with William and family enjoying a hangi with a schoolfriend’s family.

The book is written in both Mandarin and English and is published by Kiwi publisher Duck Creek Press.

Kiwi author David Ling said: “I wrote this book to provide an enjoyable story that opened up the opportunity for conversations between young children and their parents or teachers about the significance and meaning of Waitangi Day. I’m delighted to see it now also in a bilingual English/Chinese edition. It is a wonderful way of opening this opportunity to Chinese speakers, taking conversations and understanding a lot further and into this important community.”

A copy of the book will be distributed free to 750 schools that hold Mandarin classes or have a Mandarin language assistant.

New Zealand Chinese Language Week Trust Co-Chair Jo Coughlan said: “An increasing number of children are learning Chinese at primary school. William’s Waitangi Day is a fun and informative addition to school libraries that will assist in Chinese language learning and deepen cultural understanding.”

The book’s translation into Mandarin and its distribution to 750 schools has been made possible by the sponsors of New Zealand Chinese Language Week including NZ Maori Tourism and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (New Zealand) Limited. The Week is a Kiwi-led initiative that aims to promote the benefits of learning more about Chinese language and culture.

The book will be available in selected bookshops and from online booksellers in early October.

For more information on what’s happening during New Zealand Chinese Language Week, including over 100 events across New Zealand:


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