Executive Summary

This report provides an overview of feedback received from nine kura participating in the trial of books that have been relevelled using the refreshed Ngā Kete Kōrero framework. The evaluation involved firstly gathering feedback on design changes to the books, in particular: the new level stamp and level colours; the placement of the stamp and colours; and design changes to the layout of the books including font size, font type, spacing and images. Secondly the evaluation involved gathering feedback from kaiako on how easy it was to use the books that had been relevelled with a specific focus on the new transitional levels.  The Ministry was also interested in kura views on how best to rollout the books that had been relevelled.

Design and layout

Overall the changes were received well. Kura liked the placement of the new stamp and the full colour on the back cover making the level easy to identify.  The most common improvement was a request for a strip of the level colour to come through to the left-hand side of the front book cover making it easier for the Kaiako to see the level at a glance. This feedback came from three of the seven kura. 


A small group of respondents did not see the relevance of the circle and the design to the kete and preferred the old design and the placement at the centre of the book. This suggests that the design change requires some socialisation so kura know that the integrity of the kaupapa (kete korero) is still being maintained through the new design change.


Feedback regarding the changes to font and spacing were mixed. The font size followed by the spacing was liked the least.  The quality of the images was mostly liked however 45% either liked a little or did not like the relevance of the images.


While the feedback leaned more towards liking the changes some arguments for disliking the changes are convincing. These are:

  • Font size is too small for tamariki learning to read as well as for use in shared reading.
  • Spacing is too close for readers still navigating text with their fingers.
  • Font type needs to support how tamariki learn to write and needs to minimize any confusion for tamariki around letter identification, especially the letter ‘a’.
  • It is important images (and content) relate to the world of tamariki Māori.

Kura also commented on the inclusion of the word count and kupu whakamārama which was liked. Kura also requested consideration of larger books for shared reading; online resources making books more accessible at home; summaries and comprehension activities to support each reader and iwi-centred resources.

Experience of using the re-levelled books

All the kura found the re-levelled resources easy to use with their tamariki. The kura all commented that the transitional level books helped smooth the transition from one level to the next; helped the kaiako to split reading groups with more precision allowing ākonga opportunities for extension; and motivated and engaged ākonga in their own learning.

Rollout of re-levelled books into the sector

Overall the kura felt that the distribution of books needed to be equitable and fair and determined by the needs of the kura. Some kura were well resourced with titles while others had very little either due to the fact that they were immersion classes in an English medium setting and therefore were often overlooked for total immersion resources; or they were relatively new and could no longer access books that were out of print. 


Ideally kura would like both print and electronic copies of books so they are easy to access and advance teaching and learning through hyperlinks to resources and activities. All of the kura considered a reasonable number of copies per title was ten. This more than accommodated the average size of their reading groups. Kaiako also preferred new titles to be distributed by kete to assist with the organising and storing of books in kura resources rooms. Kura felt the ideal time to send out new resources was at the end of each term or the beginning of term one to coincide with planning and assessment activities.


Professional development and support was the biggest need for kura kaiako. Those who were using Ngā Kete Kōrero books felt that it had been a while since they received any professional development or refreshed guidelines to support their use of Ngā Kete Kōrero. Kaiako felt that refreshed guidelines with professional development support for kaiako to review the levels, to review how to assess and transition students, to extend learner comprehension, inquiry and inferencing; and support to maintain running records is essential to using the pukapuka to support reading in kura. The opportunity to review the books, the professional support and the framework in 12 to 18 months was also recommended in order to gather kura and kaiako feedback and reflections on what worked well and where further improvements could be made.


Kura also felt that content needed to be refreshed with topics relevant to tamariki including sports, gaming and digital technology; as well as content that supported competency and behavior development. Kura were also in need of iwi specific stories that used iwi dialect.