Weaving our nation's histories together

weaving colourful

The new Aotearoa New Zealand’s histories curriculum emphasises multiple narratives. For example, this week in 1893, women in New Zealand won the right to vote and many students may be familiar with campaigners like Kate Sheppard. The new curriculum encourages highlighting previously untold stories of peoples; in this case it would aim to include stories from Māori, Pacific and Chinese communities of their part in the achievement of suffrage in New Zealand.

The Aotearoa New Zealand’s Histories Curriculum (ANZHC) rolls out in 2022 and is part of what will be a refreshed Social Sciences curriculum. Within Social Sciences, students explore “how societies work and how they themselves can participate and take action as critical, informed, and responsible citizens” (NZ Curriculum, page 17).


Aotearoa New Zealand’s histories curriculum content supports this focus on critical citizenship – understanding the past to make sense of the present and to inform future decisions and actions. It focuses on stories of interactions across time that connect us to one another and to place. There are three elements to the histories curriculum content: UNDERSTAND, KNOW, and DO. Teachers design learning experiences that weave these elements together so that student learning is deep and meaningful.

Find information and support materials on the Aotearoa NZ’s Histories Curriculum (ANZHC) compiled by Graeme Ball, Chair of the New Zealand History Teachers’ Association.

September 23 2021 I.Rider