Hapimana Toby Rikihana

Te Arawa

1933 -

Toby Rikihana was born in Rotorua and was educated at Whakarewarewa Primary School, Rotorua High School and St Stephen’s School. He was first equal in a Ngarimu Māori writing competition in the early 1950s and in 1953 received a Social Sciences cadetship which involved working in various government departments in Wellington while attending University.

From 1953-55 he worked in the Head Office and District Office of Māori Affairs, the District Office of the Social Security Department, Head Office of the Labour and Employment Department, and Head Office of the Justice Department. While working in the Justice Department he was seconded to the Invercargill Borstal and spent three months in administration and three months in enforcement. In 1956 Rikihana moved to Auckland, and worked in the Statistics Branch of the Labour and Employment District Office. From 1957-1958 he attended Auckland Training College and in 1959 was awarded a third-year full-time university year of study in lieu of a probationary year teaching in a school.

In 1960 he was a relieving teacher at Mt Roskill Intermediate and Henderson Primary School, and then became a full-time teacher at Avondale Intermediate until 1962. He graduated with a B.A. in Education and in 1963 joined the New Zealand Army Regular Force as an Education Officer and as a Personnel Selection Officer. While in the army, Rikihana wrote a thesis on army education; in 1965 he graduated with a Masters in Education.

In 1966 he returned to teaching and taught at Birkdale Intermediate from the last term of 1966 to 1968. In 1969, Rikihana was an exchange teacher in London for one year. On his return to New Zealand, he worked at Windy Ridge School as a first assistant (1970-75), Itinerant Teacher of Māori (1976-77), and Deputy Principal (1978-79). In 1980 he became a Resource Teacher of Māori in the North Shore. From 1981-85 he was Principal of Maungatapere Primary School in Whangarei.

From 1986-87 Rikihana was Principal of Sutton Park Primary School and in the following year was seconded to the Auckland College of Education as an Education Fellow and Senior Lecturer in Education. In 1989 he was seconded to the Māori Health Organisation, He Puna Ora, for one year as Chief Executive; he was responsible for Māori paediatric courses with Professors C. Mantell and B. Elliot.

In 1990 Rikihana was appointed as Education Officer in Transition with the Ministry of Education. He was also Field Officer with Quest Rapuara when the new government agency was established. From 1991-96, Rikihana was Head of Department in Te Tari Mātauranga Māori at Manukau Polytechnic. He retired at the end of 1996.

From 1998-2001 Rikihana was the Assessor for the Ministry of Education for Māori Language Courses in Primary and Secondary Schools in Te Waka o Māui (the South Island). The assessments were for funding purposes.

Rikihana collects and translates waiata and writes non-fiction articles and reference material on curricular areas; these are distributed throughout the country. He has run three-day Wānanga for teachers and parents nation-wide. He has a working relationship with the Māori Education Trust, is Pakeke for the Māori section of Te Riu Roa, and is Pakeke for the Kaitakawaenga RTM’s and Māori Advisers in the wider Otautahi area. Rikihana is a life member of Te Hau Takitini o Aotearoa - ASTI, and a life member of NZEI-Te Riu Roa. He was a disc jockey for Radio Manukau where he had a weekly programme for a number of months in the mid 1970s. From 1978-1980 he was a Birkenhead City Councillor and was a Birkenhead Licensed Trust Member.

Biographical sources

  • Correspondence and interview with Rikihana, 16 Dec. and 21 Dec. 1992, 14 Sept. 1998, and 23 Feb. 2006.


  • Waiata Māori. Vols. 1, 2 and 3. Auckland, N.Z. : Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1972.
  • These volumes include 333 Māori waiata with English translations, including waiata from Ngā Mōteatea. Six tapes accompany these three volumes. In Volume 3 the ‘first 120 waiata have been written in simple musical notation form.’
  • Non-fiction

  • He Purongo Tohutohu. No details.
  • A publication geared toward young people going back into education at tertiary level. Written mainly in English about language, but with examples written in Māori.
  • Putaiao – Ko Ngā Huanga Maha O Rangi Rāua Ko Papa. (Natural Science). Vol. 1 and 2.
  • The many facets of Rangi and Papa.
  • He Pitopito Kōrero. No details.
  • A booklet for members of Te Reo Areare of the New Zealand Educational Institute (the primary teachers union).
  • Te Arawa. No details.
  • Ko Nga Whakaaro Ata Torotika O Te Tatau, O Te Hanga, O Te Mahi Me Nga Huinga - Mathematics. No details.
  • Logic relationships involving numbers, shapes, functions and sets.
  • Ko Nga Hunanga Maha O Rangi Raua Ko Papa - The Many Facets Of Rangi And Papa (Natural Science). Vols. 1 & 2. No details.
  • Ko te Koiwi o nga Akoranga Draft Syllabus: Māori in Primary Schools. No details.
  • Te Tātai Arorangi. Astronomy. No details.
  • Te Ngahere Me Ngā Maunga. The Forest And Mountains. No details.
  • Te Moana Me Ngā Awa. The Sea And Rivers. No details.
  • Te Ira Tangata. The Life Principle Of Mortals. No details.
  • Te Ira Atua. The Life Principle Of Super Natural Beings. No details.
  • Ngā Mārau Whānui. General Subjects. No details.
  • "An Outpost of Māoritanga." Te Ao Hou 15 (1956): 10-11.
  • Rikihana writes of the thriving Māori community in Bluff which is composed of Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Mamoe and Waitaha tribes. He notes the wealth of elders in the district, and speaks of the valuable contribution of Bob Whaitiri, Chair of the active tribal committee, and the Bradshaw family in teaching Māori arts and crafts.
  • "Coming to Auckland: Impressions of a Māori Student." Te Ao Hou 27 (1959): 36-39.
  • Rikihana gives an overview of the Māori population in Auckland and discusses reasons for the steady migration of young people to the city. He notes the increase of Māori students at university and the positive role of the University and Auckland Training College Māori clubs.
  • Te T˚rairaka (The Fantail) - Māori in Primary Schools. Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1975.
  • First Māori syllabus for mainstream primary schools covering all curricular areas.
  • He Pukapuka Rārangi Kupu (A Word List Book). Auckland, N.Z.: Bays Press, 1978.
  • A word list book for initial Māori language learning by developing an individual work dictionary.
  • Hākinakina - Mātauranga Kori-A-Tinana (Physical Education). Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1980.
  • Physical education curriculum for primary school age.
  • He Pukapuka Rārangi Kupu. North Shore, Auckland, N.Z.: Bays Press, [1980].
  • Co-authored with Ann Gulley and Patricia Shirley. A book on how to read Māori.
  • Pāngarau - Tikanga Tau, Tikanga āhua (Mathematics). Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1986.
  • The first bilingual mathematics text book.
  • Native Animals of New Zealand. Ed. A. W. B. Powell and B. J. Gill. Rev. 3rd ed. Auckland, N.Z.: Auckland Institute and Museum, 1987.
  • In the revised edition Rikihanga provides some 100 Māori names of New Zealand native animals.
  • "He Pureirei Whakamatuatanga." Getting it Right: Aspects of Ethnicity and Equality in New Zealand Education. Ed. Walter Hirsh and Raymond Scott. Auckland, N.Z.: Office of the Race Relations Conciliator, 1988. 151-155.
  • Rikihana writes that this article is ‘a description of three interrelated programmes conducted during 1986-1987 at Sutton Park School’ in Mangere East, Auckland. The first programme was a ‘Broad Based Curricular Māori Programme for all Classes’ which was taught by the Principal. The other two were the Whaia te Mātauranga - Te Kōhanga Reo and the Mātauranga Reo Rua - Bilingual Education programmes which began in February 1987.
  • Ko Ngā Rerekētanga-a-Iwi (Cultural Differences). Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1988.
  • A book on cultural differences.
  • Tikanga ā Iwi. Title formerly known asWhakawhanaungatanga A Noho (Inter-Human Relationships, Environmental Relationship): Social Studies. [Auckland, N.Z.: Auckland College of Education], 1988.
  • Te Kōtuku - The White Heron. Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1988.
  • A text covering the whole syllabus for young children at Te Kōhanga Reo level and early Childhood Level.
  • Science. Vol. 1. [Auckland, N.Z.: Teachers Resource, Centre, Auckland College of Education], 1988.
  • Mātauranga Hauora (Health). Vols. 1 & 2. Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1988. Rpt. 1989.
  • Rikihana states that these two English language volumes on Māori health were initially written for primary teachers but were later rewritten for use at secondary and tertiary levels also.
  • He Pukapuka Rarangi Kupu. He mea kohikohi na Ann Gulley me Patricia Shirley. He mea tirotiro na Hapimana T. Rikihana. Auckland, N.Z.: Bays Press, [1990].
  • He pukapuka rarangi kupu. Auckland N.Z. : Bays Press,1990
  • A Trainers’ Guide To Māori Language And Customs = He Purongo Tohutohu Mo Te Kaiwhakangungu O Te Reo Māori Me Ona Ritenga. 1st ed. [Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, 1991]. 2nd ed. 1992. Rpt. 1997.
  • Tikanga ā Iwi - Whakawhānaungatanga-ā-noho (Social Studies). Auckland, N.Z.: Auckland College of Education, 1983, Rev. ed. 1992.
  • A curriculum for Social Studies for the primary and secondary school student. Rikihana writes that this book ‘is a commentary on historical events and their relevance to modern day thinking on Māori matters. The emphasis is on broadening the general knowledge of teachers through a study of our history from a Māori point of view’ (Getting it Right: 155).
  • Mātauranga Whareherehere (Prison Education). Auckland, N.Z.: Manukau Polytechnic, Auckland College of Education, 1992.
  • Tikanga Tau, Tikanga Ahua, Tikanga Tatai, Tikanga Mahi, Tikanga Huinga= Principles Of Number, Shape, Measurement, Functions And Sets: Mathematics. [Newmarket], N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, 1992. Rpt. Auckland, N.Z.: Te Ropu Tautoko I Te Reo Māori, [1997].
  • Te Ao turoa : (science). Auckland, N.Z. : Teachers Resource Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1992.
  • Ko Ngā Ara Takahanga. Auckland, N.Z.: Manukau Polytechnic, 1994.
  • When the idea of building a new prison was being discussed, the Manukau Polytechnic was approached to provide an educational programme. Rikihana wrote this book in response on Prison Education.
  • Te Mātauranga Putaiao: Science & Technology. 1995. No details.
  • This publication originated in a paper given by Rikihana, which was subsequently published in book form in 1995.
  • Putaiao - Te Ao Turoa. Vol. 1 & 2. Auckland, N.Z.: Kohia Teachers Centre, Auckland College of Education, 1982. Rev. ed. 1996.
  • A science/natural world text for teachers to use in the classroom. First written in the 1970s.
  • Look at and investigate our own night sky !!! = Titiro ki te ao mārama o Aotearoa !!! Wellington, N.Z. : Carter Observatory, 2000.
  • Co-author Tony Fisher.
  • Ko Nga Takaro Me Nga Kanikani O Te Māori. Games And Dances Of The Māori. Rev. Oct. 2002.
  • Māori String Figures. J. C. Andersen. Rev. ed. 2005. No details.
  • In the revised edition Rikihana revises the Māori text.
  • Ko Te Hangarau (Technology), 2006. No details.
  • Te Mātauranga Putaiao, Te Matauranga Hangarau Me Nga Momo Tikanga A Iwi. Science And Technology, Education And Ethnicity, 1996-2006. No details.
  • Ko Te Kawa o te Marae, 2006. No details.
  • Nga Mahi Toi; Ko Te Tatai Arorangi; Ko Te Hangarau; Ko Te Mana Wahine; Ko Te Mahi Whai (String Patterns). Rev. 2006. No details.
  • Other

  • Programme Planning - A Unit Based Approach. Trial Units/ Modules. Wellington, N.Z.: Learning Media, Ministry of Education, 199?.
  • Includes some of Rikihana’s word lists.
  • Te Ako Me Te Whakaako Māori - Learning And Teaching Māori: With A Guide To The Kōrero Māori Readers. Auckland, N.Z.: Heinemann, 1976.
  • In this book Rikihana provides an introduction to the Kōrero Māori basic Readers of which there are four series A, B, C, and D with ten books in each series. He discusses Māori as a second language and the nature of the language - with notes on transliterations and pronunciation. He provides a simple language programme for those with no linguistic background in Māori -from infant classes up to Forms 1-2. Rikihana includes the lyrics of 34 waiata, 4 haka with English translations, Māori grammar, and English translations of series A and B. Rikihana has chosen vocabulary and sentence construction that he considers ‘the most widely used by fluent speakers throughout the country.’ The readers progress from single sentences to short stories. Rikihana writes that ‘Series A and B deal with the present tense, series C introduces the past and future, and, towards the end, the negative. Series D provides extension work in more depth on the negative, and at the end begins to introduce conversational expressions and stories. Series C and D have not been published. Dr. Bruce Biggs was a consultant for the book and George Ngata was a consultant for the Series A and B Kōrero Māori books.
  • Kōrero Māori Readers. Illus. Bill Wrathall. Ser. A. Auckland, N.Z.: Heinemann, 1976.
  • 10 books.
  • Kōrero Māori Readers. Ser. B. Auckland, N.Z.: Heinemann, 1976.
  • 10 books.
  • Te Ako Me Te Whakaako Māori. Learning And Teaching Māori: With A Guide To The Kōrero Māori Readers. Auckland, N.Z.: Heinemann, 1976.
  • Heinemann New Zealand Dictionary. Auckland, N.Z.: Heinemann, 1979.
  • Rikihana was a member of the dictionary’s Editorial Team.
  • Trial Units/Modules. Timaru, N.Z.: Aoraki Polytechnic; Kohia Teachers Centre, 1990.
  • In 1990 Rikihana was asked to write the Māori perspective on a series of modules or units for the NZQA. Four government agencies were involved in the project: NZQA, ETSA, Quest Rapuara and Ministry of Education. Some 400-500 units were proposed to be written but when the National Government came to power the plan was put aside. The completed units have been distributed to a number of organisations.


  • Benton, Richard A. Materials for Teaching and Learning the Māori Language: A bibliography of published materials for teaching Māori to speakers of other languages compiled and annotated by Richard A. Benton. Wellington, N.Z.: New Zealand Council for Educational Research, Māori Unit, 1979. 11, 24.
  • Reviews

    Learning and Teaching Måori.
  • O’Regan, Stephen. New Zealand Bookworld 31 (Dec. 1976): 25.
  • Learning and Teaching Māori.
  • Moorfield, John. Multi-cultural School 6 (1976-77): 45-46.