For more information about Pukekos check here: NZ Birds

Tā Moko Faces:

Note: Tā moko is the permanent body and face marking by Māori.  For more information and for examples check here:

Materials: Print out a copy of my Tā moko worksheet with a plain mask face, black markers, (Optional) you can glue the worksheet to cardboard and then cut it out to create a mask but we left it as a drawing craft.

Step 1: Look at examples of Tā moko and have your child create his/her own or copy the design from a photo.

Step 2: Display, turn into a mask or clue into your Family Theme Day Scrapbook.

My son was 4 and niece was 3 in this photo; they loved their Māori costumes!

For more information on these symbols Check here: Traditional Maori Symbols


Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World’s Strangest Parrot, by Sy Montgomery and photographs by Nic Bishop, 2010

Charlie and Kiwi: An Evolutionary Adventure, by Eileen Campbell

Veggie Stamps!

Māori Inspired Crafts:

For more information about the Tuatara check here:  Tuatara Facts

Learn about Māori weaving here: 



Copyright 2016. Family Theme Days. All rights reserved.


Materials: paint (we used acrylic), paint brush, wax paper for pallet, a potato cut in two pieces, two small carrots (one cut in half lengthwise, the other with the tip cut), a piece of celery cut, green paint, black paint, grey paint (or mix white and black like we did) and a piece of paper. 

Step 1: Squirt the three colours of paint on the wax paper and prepare veggies.

Step 2: Have your child paint the cut end of the potato green using the paintbrush and then stamp to create a head and a body.  Use the carrot cut lengthwise to stamp the tail feathers.

Step 3: Paint the end of the celery in grey and stamp it on the head to be the beak and the body to be the feet. 

Sep 4: Paint the tip of a carrot to stamp and eye.

Craft Stick Māori in Costume:

Note: The traditional Māori costume consists of a Tipare (headband), Piupiu (flax skirt), Pari (bodice) for women.

 Materials: thick craft sticks (not popsicle sized), googly eyes, white paper, red and black markers, thin tipped black marker, white glue.

Step 1: Using the craft stick to measure, cut out a skirt for each of your figures.  Draw black stripes onto the skirt and then cut slits to make it look like a grass like skirt.

Step 2: Using the craft stick to measure, cut out a bodice for the female and waist band for the male figure and decorate with black and red and white decorations.

Step 3: Using the craft stick to measure, cut out a headband for each figure and decorate with red and black markers.

Step 4: Draw hair onto the top of each craft stick.

Step 5: Glue each of the paper costume pieces to the craft stick and glue googly eyes as well. 

Step 6: Draw a smile and then let the craft dry before playing with them.

Old photo of a kiwi bird

on my mother-in-law's farm

New Zealand

To learn more about kiwis check here: NZ Birds 


​NOTE: Not only are silver ferns seen all over New Zealand but they are the symbol of their national rugby team since the 1880s and might possibly be on the new flag. 

Materials: black paper, child safe scissors, glue stick.

Step 1: Cut out a large basic leaf shape (fold in half and cut that way to create a symmetrical shape).

Step 2: Cut out a long stem (again fold in half for symmetry and to help with the last step).

Step 3: Refold the leaf in half again and cut curved strips to be the separate parts of the fern.  Cut each of these in half along the fold line as well.  We did not use every strip of paper.

Step 4:  Use the glue stick to attach the curved strips to the leaf to create our own New Zealand Sliver Fern!



​NOTE: Sheep farming is a huge industry in New Zealand. There are approximately 39 million sheep in the country as of 2015.

Materials: a cork, white paint, wax paper for a pallet, black paper, child safe scissors, googly eyes, coloured paper for background, glue stick.

 Step 1: have your child dip the cork into the white paint and use it as a stamp to create a fluffy body for the sheep.

Step 2: Let the paint dry and once ready cut out a simple head and front legs (or two for a profile pic) and have your child glue the pieces onto the painted area.

Step 3: Lastly, have your child glue the googly eyes.

Print out this Symbols Worksheet to help with the next craft...

Birds of New Zealand:

There are so many different types of unique birds in New Zealand, many flightless due to the lack of predators for so many years, including the kiwi bird. Here are some crafts based on these feathered friends.

Māori Symbols:

Materials: White (or other colour) air drying clay (found in craft stores or near craft supplies at other stores), embroidery thread, a copy of my Maori Symbols Worksheet

Step 1: Look at the worksheet together and read the different meanings and then have fun trying to recreate these shapes in the air drying clay.

Step 2: You can carefully stick a toothpick through the clay to create a hole to thread for necklaces if desired.

Step 3: Once dry thread embroidery thread through the holes and tie at the end to create a necklace.


​NOTE: Tuatara are the last of the dinosaurs!  They are rare reptiles found only in New Zealand. .

Materials: coloured paper (we used yellow and brown), a ruler, pencil, child safe scissors, googly eyes and white glue (Optional) or black marker, glue sticker.

Step 1: Fold a piece of coloured paper in half and then reopen and draw a triangle with the pencil and ruler using the fold as the middle of the triangle.  Cut out the triangle.

Step 2: Fold each half of the triangle toward the middle to create another triangle (much like when you are making a paper airplane). There should now be four long and skinny triangles within the one triangle.  Refold to the original half fold and cut little slits through to the next fold line.  This will create texture in the finished lizard, but this step is optional.

Step 3: Refold into four triangles but shape into a 3D shape by gluing the two end triangles one on top of the other. You now have a long 3D triangle that is the body of the tuatara with the pointed end as a tail.

Step 4:  Cut out half of an oval to create the head and glue into the opening of the 3D shape.

Step 5: Cut out legs and claws (my kids opted for no claws) and glue them to the bottom of the lizard. Step 6: Lastly glue googly eyes onto the head or draw them in with marker.  Let it dry before playing with your new prehistoric friend.

Step 2: Twist 3 pipe cleaners together and create a star or flower at the bottom as pictured.  We bent the top to create a firmer handle as well. 

Step 3: Dip in red paint and stamp on the the leaves to create the red flower.  Once dry display or glue in your Family Theme Day scrapbook.

How Kakapo are released into the wild

Pohutukawa Pipe Cleaner Stamps

​NOTE: Due to its crimson flowers that bloom in December. the Pohutukawa tree has become a part of the New Zealand Christmas tradition.  

Materials: Coloured paper (any colour for the background but also green for the leaves), child safe scissors, pipe cleaners, red paint, wax paper for a pallet. 
Step 1: Cut out small ovals to represent the leaves and have your child glue them onto the coloured background.

Pukeko Collage Craft:

Materials: glue stick, child safe scissors, black marker, white paper, black paper, red paper, blue paper, pink paper, green paper.

Step 1: Have your child cut out the various shapes to create this bird craft or cut them out for younger children.  You will need a large blue oval for the body and a small one for the head.  A wing shape (part of an oval trimmed) in black for the wing, a white triangle and a slightly larger black one for the tail.  A long red beak.  Long and skinny pink rectangles for the legs and smaller ones for the toes.  A long strip of green with slits cut along the top to create grass.

Step 2: Assemble the pieces to create your pukeko bird using glue stick and draw on a little black eye.

Step 3: Display or glue into your Family Theme Day Scrapbook.


- A Three Step Craft!

Materials: brown pom pom, googly eyes, brown craft foam (or brown paper), white glue, wax paper, toothpick.

Step 1:
Gather your materials.

Step 2:
Cut out a long beak and long legs and bird feet from the craft foam or paper.

Step 3:
Have your child glue the pieces to the pom pom (a toothpick helps).

Kakapos are very rare. They are the only flightless parrot in the world and protected by special forest rangers because it is a critically endangered species. As of May 2014 there were only 125 living kakpo and every one of them has a name (check here: 

for more information about kakapo check here: