Rāranga - the art of weaving

Tauke Kirkwood


Raranga Harakeke (weaving with flax) is a sensory modulation tool used by the ‘Pupukemoana’ team, a child and adolescent mental health team based at Waitemata District Health Board in Tamaki Makaurau. It is an effective tool that uses western sensory concepts to self-regulate and make emotional adjustments by implementing a Māori cultural perspective using flax weaving. Prior to this project there were no Māori cultural constructs/tools offered to Māori whānau by the Child Youth & Family Mental Health Services based at Waitemata District Health Board. Raranga Harakeke provide a range of Māori values and concepts, practices and principles that can be drawn on to work effectively within whānau dynamics to assist in healing and well-being.


raranga harakeke; weaving; sensory modulation tool; pupukemoana; child and adolescent mental health; māori practice; mental health;

Full Text:



Champagne, T. (2008). Sensory modulation & environment: Essential elements of occupation (3rd ed.). Southampton, MA: Champagne Conferences & Consultation.

Dempsey, A. (2011). Developing a tiered sensory modulation training package. Knowledge Exchange: a Te Pou Research Project. Te Pou o Te Whakaaro Nui. Waitemata District Health Board.

Durie, M. (1998). Whaiora: Maori health development, pp. 68–74. Auckland: Oxford University Press.

Hollands, T., Sutton, D., Wright-St. Clair, V. & Hall, R. (2015). Maori mental health consumer’s sensory experience of Kapa Haka and its utility to occupational therapy practice. New Zealand Journal of Occupational Therapy, 62(1), 3-11.

Hopkirk, J. (2006). Re: Culturally Relevant Occupational Therapy: Implications for the effective use of our therapeutic selves. Occupational Therapy Insight, 27, No.5, 56. New Zealand.

Iwama, M. K. (2004). Revisiting culture in occupational therapy: A meaningful endeavor. OTJR: Occupation, Participation and Health, 24(1), 2-3.

Miller, L., Reisman, J., McIntosh, D., & Simon, J. (2001). An ecological model of sensory modulation. In S. Smith Roley, E. Blanche, & R. Schaaf (Eds.). Understanding the nature of sensory integration with diverse populations (pp. 57–82). San Antonio, TX: Therapy Skill Builders.

Ministry of Education (2015). Te kohi harakeke. Wellington: Ministry of Education.

Minister of Health. (2006). Te Kokiri: The Mental Health and Addiction Action Plan 2006–2015. Wellington: Ministry of Health. Retrieved from http://www.moh.govt.nz/moh.nsf/pagesmh/5014/$File/te-kokiri-mental-health-addicition-actionplan-2006-2015.pdf

Ministry of Health, (2015). Maori Health Models – Te Whare Tapa Wha. Retrieved from http://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/populations/maori-health/maori-health-models/maori-health-models-te-whare-tapa-wha.

Oakley Browne, M., Wells, J. & Scott, K. (Eds). (2006). Te Rau Hinengaro: The New Zealand Mental Health Survey. Wellington, Ministry of Health.

Pihama, L. (2001). Tihei mauri ora: Honouring our voices. Mana Wāhine as a Kaupapa Māori Theoretical Framework. (Unpublished PhD thesis). University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.

Puketapu-Hetet, E. (1989). Māori Weaving. Pitman, Indiana University, USA.

Te Pou. (2009). Sensory Modulation: One approach to reducing the use of seclusion and restraint at Northland District Health board. Te Pou o te Whakaaro Nui. Retrieved from https://www.tepou.co.nz/assets/images/content/your_stories/files/story045.pdf.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.11157/anzswj-vol27iss4id436


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.