Watch: Palmerston North school's spine-tingling haka for Year 13s

Author
Megan Harvey, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 3 Dec 2019, 8:24PM

Watch: Palmerston North school's spine-tingling haka for Year 13s

Author
Megan Harvey, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 3 Dec 2019, 8:24PM

A spine-tingling haka performed by Palmerston North Boys' High School has been highly praised after it was posted on social media.

On November 1, several videos captured hundreds of students coming together to perform a haka in their school hall.

The haka was performed for the Year 13s, who are seen in the top level, as it was their last day before NCEA exams, Deputy Rector Gerard Atkin told the Herald.

"It's more to recognise their contribution to the school over their time, to wish them well and challenge them for their exams which were starting a week later," he said.

Farewelling the Year 13s with a haka has been something the school has done traditionally for many years, with the idea coming from the school leadership team.

"We have a school haka written especially for us a number of years ago," Atkin said.

"The haka talks about our school values ... and it encourages the boys to set high goals and aspirations for themselves

"It's something the boys really engage with and it is significant in terms of the students having a feeling of belonging."

Atkin added that the students have performed the haka in recognition of important occasions, including honouring teachers who have passed away.

"In those instances, it's a really good way for young men to express their grief. It can be used in a number of contexts," he said.

In May 2017, a powerful haka was performed at the funeral of their much-loved teacher James Michael Crosswell, who died of cancer.

Palmerston North Boys' High School has also previously held haka competitions between clubs and Year 9 classes.

Videos of the recent haka were posted on social media, where many were impressed by the boys' performance.

"I get chills every time I watch the haka!! Just mesmerising! Well done lads!," one person said.

Another wrote: "Powerful stuff. Gives me goosebumps! Awesome to watch."

Others liked how the haka can bring the students closer together.

"The traditions that drive togetherness and spirit continue to grow. Wonderful to see such commitment; something that can last a lifetime," one said.

Another agreed: "Amazing how the haka brings so many people together in a single moment and creates a unity of all people of many different colours sizes and heritage."

 

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