Te Reo With Mnemonics: Home Words

Pillow – urunga

A woman goes to lie down with a bright orange-coloured pillow.

Chair – tūru

Balanced precariously on a small chair are two kangaroos (two roos).

Bed – moenga

A bedroom looks photographically realistic except for the bed, which is drawn in Manga-style with Japanese characters on the bedding.

Mat – whāriki

A young man is sitting on a toilet and looking down at the mat in front of him. The mat starts swirling in a range of terrifying colours and he says “Freaky!”

Sheet – hīti

A man is lying in bed on a sweltering night. He cries out “Oh, the heat!” and then strips his bed down to the sheets.

Mirror – whakaata

A woman looks at herself in the hand mirror and notices, in the reflection, Dan Carter, far in the distance. In the mirror is the Far Carter.

The Maori word for ‘pillow’ – urunga – sounds like the English word ‘orange’

Brush – paraihe

A boy holding a large brush in his hands kneels down to pray.

Stairs – arapiki

An arrow walks up a set of stairs outside a house and then peeks through a window. He is the arrow peeker.

Table – paparahua

A young boy is sitting at a beach when a man comes by, rowing on an upended table. The boy says “Papa! Row here!”

Clothespeg – mātiti

A fat young boy puts a clothespeg on his own chest and says “Ow, my titty!”

Telephone – waea

Two people in adjacent houses are talking to each other on telephones, but there is a wire connecting both of the phones and they can’t move further away from each other.

Couch – hāneanea

A man is lying on a couch watching a video of two women fighting MMA-style. From deep in the couch he cheers “Ha! Knee her! Knee her!”

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The above is an excerpt from the upcoming Learn Maori Vocabulary With Mnemonics, by Jeff Ngatai, due to be published by VJM Publishing in the summer of 2017/18.

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