Leanne Stubbing, Churton Park Primary School teacher, is incorporating cultural heritage into design elements of the school.
Leanne is passionate about making Te Tiriti of Waitangi a living, breathing document and teaching the importance of looking after Pāpātuanuku (the land).
Leanne chose Kenepuru, Ponga, Totara and Pukehuia to reflect the historical character of the area.
Claire Bibby of Glenside Progressive Association, provided history of the area which helped inform Leanne.
Kenepuru is the original name of the Porirua stream, Totara represents the trees that featured in the area before the bush was felled (early maps mark Totara Ridge). Ponga is for the ferns that filled the streamside gullies along Stebbings Road and the old Porirua Road.
"Ponga ferns were painted in art, described in early settler letters and resulted in the Stebbings family referring to stream beside Stebbings Road as Fern Tree Gully," said Claire.
"Pukehuia is an old name for the area, particularly the hillsides and ridge-line east of Middleton Road, and was used by Sir Tamati Reedy when naming the Reedy block, their land in Glenside," said Claire.
The school is being painted in various shades of green representing the land and blue representing the streams. Art designs reflecting the lansdcape of hills, stream, ponga and totara will be incorporated onto the exterior of the classrooms.
Leanne, who is of Tainui descent, said the rebuild of the school was an ideal opportunity to make visible, the historical cultural history of the area.
She is planning to meet with Ngati Toa to discuss how their historical designs might be included at the entrance of the school hall, and she is meeting with Owen Maurirere at the Royal NZ Police College to look at the carvings of legendary tuna (eels) in their Kapiti room.
Leanne teaches Year 6 (Standard 4) school children at Churton Park Primary School.