Mihiata Dawn Retimana née Fairlie

Te Whānau a Apanui, Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāi Tahu

1939 -

Mihiata Retimana was born in Waipiro Bay and was educated at Tokomaru Bay Public School, Horoera Native School, Tokomaru Bay Native School, Tokomaru Bay Māori School, Tokomaru Bay Māori District High School and Kaitaia College. From 1957-58 she attended Wellington Teachers’ College, was an assistant teacher at Rotoiti Māori School in 1959 and graduated with a Trained Teachers Certificate in 1960. From 1960-61 she was an assistant teacher in the Junior School of Tolaga Bay District High School. In 1962 she went to Dunedin Teachers’ College and trained as an Art and Craft Adviser. From 1962-1966 she worked in the Head Office of the Arts and Crafts Branch of the Department of Education and wrote non-fiction instructional booklets. From 1973-1996 she taught in Paparangi Primary School, Erskine College of Sacred Heart, and Mana College. Since 1986 she has worked for the New Zealand Correspondence School (Te Kura-a-Tuhi) as an assistant teacher for Secondary School Practical Art, Art History SOLS AOLS, and as Course Manager and Course writer. She became a registered teacher in 1993 and received a Secondary Schools Study Award 1. Concurrent with her teaching career, Retimana has pursued further study through the Correspondence School A.S.T.U., Wellington Teachers’ College A.S.T.U., Massey University and Victoria University. She graduated with a Diploma in Teaching in 1984 and a B.A. (double major in Education and Art History) in 1993. From 1993-1997 she worked on a Masters in Education Policy. She writes non-fiction articles and has unpublished art history and education papers.

Biographical sources

  • Correspondence from Retimana, 28 Feb. 1998.


  • Ceremonial Costume: The Arts of the Māori, Instructional Booklet. Wellington, N.Z.: Art and Craft Branch, Dept. of Education, 1962.
  • A guide for teachers giving instruction on the design and construction of the traditional Māori clothing articles: pari, tipare, tatua, and piupiu.
  • Tukutuku and Kowhaiwhai: The Arts of the Māori Instructional Booklet. Wellington, N.Z.: Art and Craft Branch, Dept. of Education, 1965.
  • Prepared with Cliff Whiting and Clive Arlidge.
  • The New Zealand Experience Vignettes. Palmerston North, N.Z.: Massey U, Dunmore, 1984.
  • PPTA News Bulletin. Wellington, N.Z.: Post Primary Teachers’ Association, Dec. 1989.
  • Theses

  • "Distance Education: Full Time Māori Pregnant and Childcare Senior Secondary School Students." No details.
  • A three-paper thesis.


  • Taylor, C. R. H. A Bibliography of Publications on the New Zealand Māori and the Moriori of the Chatham Islands. Oxford: Clarendon; Oxford UP, 1972. 122.