This is another gem of a book in the Little Kiwi series by Nikki Slade Robinson. Little Kiwi’s Koro tells the story of their ancestors coming from different lands. Koro’s ancestors were the best food finders in the land and the ancestors of Kuia were known as the best nest builders.
They settled on the same land and a fight broke out before the chiefs stepped forward to find a resolution to the conflict. The author talks through the tense negotiations, staying true to the high emotions we all feel when we need to compromise! Te reo Māori is woven throughout the text – and many words are quietly translated as you read along (perfect for introducing new vocabulary).
The text is beautifully accompanied by Nikki’s illustrations. We are transported back in time by the clever use of black and white pictures when Koro is remembering the past. I still love all the emotion Nikki can portray with Little Kiwi – and the little details which distinguish each character (especially the pounamu being worn by the chiefs).
The familiar characters of Little Kiwi and her family introduces ideas about family history and identity to young children. Through Koro’s story we also come to understand what a treaty is. It is a gentle reminder for all children about friendship, conflict resolution and learning from each other.
It is a picture book that can be a wonderful teaching tool to talk about co-operation or simply enjoyed for the wonderful story-telling within.
Reviewed by Sara Croft
The Little Kiwi and the Treaty
by Nikki Slade Robinson
Published by David Ling Publishing