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National events and The New Zealand Curriculum

These materials highlight national days and weeks of importance. They explain how national events link to The New Zealand Curriculum and provide ideas, resources, and tools to help schools get involved. 

What's on in term 1?


America's Cup from 15 January 2021
New Zealand is hosting the America's Cup event during term one 2021. The ideas and resources on this page support schools, kura, and early learning services to weave the America’s Cup into their local curriculum.


Waitangi Day 6 February 2021
Waitangi Day provides an opportunity for students to examine social science concepts and values, and develop key competencies. Schools can also consider how the Treaty of Waitangi principle is used as a foundation for curriculum decision making.

Chinese New Year from 12 February 2021
By examining this celebration students can explore values such as diversity and respect, and develop conceptual understandings about culture, identity, and customs.


Seaweek – Kaupapa Moana 6–14 March 2021
Seaweek is New Zealand’s annual national week about the sea. Hosted by the NZ Association for Environmental Education (NZAEE), Seaweek is a time for us to get to know our ocean, its habitats, characteristics, and inhabitants better.

Christchurch terror attacks – Two years after, 15 March 2021
15 March 2021 marks two years since acts of terror shook our nation to the core. Many communities and schools will pause and reflect on what happened to remember those we lost and those who continue to be affected. We have compiled a number of resources that support safe, welcoming, and inclusive environments for all students, while celebrating the diversity of our nation.


Earth Day 22 April 2021
Earth Day is a global event where people honour the natural environment and raise awareness of environmental issues that trouble the world. By taking part in Earth Day students have the opportunity to learn about the future focus issue of sustainability.

Anzac Day 25 April 2021
By examining this national event students can develop key competencies, explore values such as respect and honour, and examine the social science concepts of identity, continuity, and change. 

What's on in term 2?


New Zealand Music Month May 2021
By focusing on New Zealand Music Month you can explore the values of diversity and community and participation with your students. New Zealand Music Month provides a useful context for students to develop understandings in the arts and social sciences. 

Rotuman Language Week 9 – 15 May 2021
Rotuman Language Week takes place in 2021 from Sunday 9 May to Saturday 15 May. The theme for this special week is "Putua ‘os fäega ma ‘os ag fak Rotuma. Nurturing our Rotuman identity through language and culture".

New Zealand Sign Language Week 10 – 16 May 2021 
New Zealand Sign Language Week provides an opportunity for schools to reflect on the inclusion principle and explore the values of diversity and respect. Students can make use of key competencies, especially using language, symbols, and text and relating to others. Students will achieve learning outcomes described in the learning languages learning area.


Bullying Free NZ Week 17 – 21 May 2021  
This year’s theme is He Kōtuinga mahi iti, he hua pai-ā rau – Small ripples create big waves. The small actions we take to help prevent bullying will together create a wave of change.

Techweek 2021 22 – 30 May 2021
Techweek celebrates New Zealand’s fast growing technology and innovation sectors and raises awareness of the need for greater ICT skills and a "tech-savvy" culture for everyone. 

Samoa Language Week Sunday 30 May – Saturday 5 June 2021
Samoa Language Week / Vaiaso o le gagana Samoa helps all New Zealanders journey towards shared cultural understandings. Learning a new language gives us insight into new ways of thinking, and to different beliefs and cultural practices. Everyone who learns Gagana Samoa helps to preserve it as a living and rich language.

International Languages Week 17– 21 May 2021
This week provides an opportunity to showcase and promote languages and cultures in your school and communities. 


Kiribati Language Week 11 – 17 July 2021 
Kiribati Language Week is organised by the Ministry for Pacific Peoples to maintain and promote the language and culture of Kiribati (pronounced KiriBASS). The Kiribati language is also known as Gilbertese. 

Matariki celebrated 19 June – 11 July 2021
The pre-dawn rise of Matariki can be seen in June or July every year. By celebrating Matariki at your school you can bring a range of NZC principles to life. Students can explore values, develop key competencies, and examine social science concepts.

Schools Pride

Schools Pride Week Term 2, Week 7

Celebrating Pride in every school. Embrace inclusivity and increase a sense of belonging. Find useful resources and ways for incorporating rainbow issues in NCEA standards, the curriculum, and the school's kaupapa. InsideOUT developed Schools Pride Week.

2021 Tokyo Olympic Games
The 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games start 23 July 2021 and the 2021 Tokyo Paralympic Games (24 August to 5 September) provide unique and vast learning opportunities for your students. Here is a collection of teaching ideas to help you share the Olympic spirit with your school and community.

What's on in term 3?


Cook Islands Language Week Sunday 1 August – Saturday 7 August 2021
Cook Islands Language Week /Te 'Epetoma o te Reo Kūki Airani celebrates the identity, languages, and culture of students from the Cook Islands and students whose families are from the Cook Islands; supporting this group of learners to engage and achieve success.

Maths Week 9 – 13 August 2021
Sponsored by the Ministry of Education and the New Zealand Association of Mathematics Teachers, a number of resources are written and made available to teachers and students in Y1–11. 

Money Week 9 – 15 August 2021
Money Week provides the opportunity to integrate numeracy with other learning areas, such as literacy, social sciences, learning languages, and the arts. It also offers the chance to engage parents, whānau, and local businesses with learning experiences and conversations.

Conservation Week 4 – 12 September 2021 
Capture your students' natural curiosity about the world they live in, and raise awareness about Aotearoa/New Zealand, by involving them in this year’s Conservation Week. This week is all about getting out and discovering the conservation areas that are just outside your door.


Tonga Language Week 5 – 11 September 2021
Tonga Language Week / Uike Kātoanga’i ‘o e Lea Faka-Tonga gives students of all ethnicities the chance to learn some basic Lea Faka-Tonga, and gives your students of Tongan origin the chance to be experts in the classroom.

Te Wiki o te Reo Māori 13 – 19 September 2021
Te Wiki o te Reo Māori provides an opportunity to celebrate and learn te reo Māori, helping to secure its future as a dynamic and rich language.

New Zealand Chinese Language Week 26 September – 2 October 2021 
New Zealand Chinese Language Week is a Kiwi-led initiative aimed at encouraging New Zealanders to discover Chinese language and culture. 


Tuvalu Language Week Sunday 26 September – Saturday 2 October 2021
This special week gives speakers of the Tuvalu language the chance to be experts in the classroom, and allows whānau and the wider Tuvalu community to see their language and culture being treasured in New Zealand schools.

What's on in term 4?


Fijian Language Week Sunday 3 October – Saturday 9 October 2021
Fijian Language Week helps all New Zealanders journey towards shared cultural understandings. Learning a new language gives us insight into new ways of thinking, and into different beliefs and cultural practices.

Niue Language Week Sunday 17 October – Saturday 23 October 2021
This special week gives speakers of Vagahau Niue the chance to be experts in the classroom, and allows whānau and the wider Niue community to see their language and culture being treasured in New Zealand schools.

Gagana Tokelau Language Week Sunday 24 October – Saturday 30 October 2021
Gagana Tokelau Week provides the opportunity to celebrate and nurture the language and culture of Tokelau in your classroom and school community.


Diwali from 4 November 2021
Diwali, also known as Deepavali, or the Festival of Lights, is a five day long Hindu celebration. Diwali is a great opportunity to engage with the local Indian Hindu community, especially those members who are families at school. 

Archived events

Census 2018 6 March 2018
Every five years, a census is run – the official count of how many people and dwellings there are in New Zealand. By asking everyone to complete a set of questions about themselves and their household, we can capture a snapshot of who is living in, and visiting, New Zealand.

General Election 17 October 2020
The General Election provides a useful context to build students' understanding of Parliament and the voting process. This resource page provides ideas and resources to help you plan programmes of learning around this significant event.

Commonwealth Games 4–15 April 2018
The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) will welcome more than 6600 athletes and team officials from 70 Commonwealth nations and territories to the Gold Coast and event cities Brisbane, Cairns, and Townsville, to share in the celebration of sport, entertainment, and culture.

Updated on: 02 Feb 2021