The kapa haka kākahu was designed by students in 2017 who were inspired by the deeds of Tānemahuta through the creation of te ao marama (the world of light). This story is important to the design of our kakahu as we have included a unique line running through the middle creating a mirror image.

The pattern represents the separation of Ranginui and Papatuanuku by Tānemahuta and is significant to us as it marks the beginning of our world. The poutama (staircase) pattern represents Tane’s journey that he took in reaching the three kete of knowledge but is also a symbol to show achievement and attainment.

We want to show the journey that all students at Mount Aspiring College take throughout their education and the success they may achieve. You can see that where the staircase goes up, there is also the mirror image of the staircase going down and this is to represent our obstacles or failures. It is important for us all in life to achieve success but also to acknowledge that success does not come without failure. 

The central aspect of the design has a black diamond, the top half represents ‘te maunga o Tititea’ (Mt Aspiring) and its reflection in ‘te roto o Wānaka’ lake Wanaka. The hour-glass shape in the middle of the design represents each person being at the centre of their own universe. In teaching te reo Māori we learn this concept through mihimihi and for us as a school we aim to put each student at the centre of their own learning. This shape can also represent the Clutha River (Mata-au) as it leaves lake Wānaka and carves through the landscape of Central Otago.