Living Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Educational Philosophy and Theory

pp 1-5

Date: Latest Version


  • Mere KēpaAffiliated withFaculty of Medical and Health Sciences, School of Population Health, University of Auckland Email author 


The terminology ako means, in Māori language and culture, to learn, teach, advise, study, and instruct. The word and meaning are shared with the languages of Tonga, Samoa, Niue, Tokelau, and the Cook Islands, among other groups of people from the island homelands (meaning South Pacific region). Principally, unlike the domineering English-speaking New Zealand Pākehā European culture, no distinction is made between learning and teaching. On this principle and in response to the problem of indigenous Māori people, in educational institutions, such as the university, passively receiving useless information to do things for the prevailing culture, a deeper philosophy and a broader theory of education will be considered in this chapter. Through teaching and learning as a whole and not as unrelated parts, people’s feeling about life, of gaining experience, and our senses cooperate, and through the cooperation of senses, experience, and the body with spirits, a Māori point of view ...

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