Landcare Research - Manaaki Whenua

Landcare-Research -Manaaki Whenua

Ahi Pepe | MothNet Light: Classroom activities

These resources are free to download and print.

Kaitiakitaka mā te Pūtaiao, mā te Taiao, mā te mahi Toi

As part of Ahi Pepe MothNet, a set of resources has been developed to help you integrate the MothNet programme into your class. The units are available in either te reo Māori or English or you can download both. They contain most of the special vocabulary you’ll need to talk about moths, pollination and food webs. Activities that are fun and hands-on have been inluded. Our guiding principle is Kaitiakitaka mā te Pūtaiao, mā te Taiao, mā te mahi Toi - Stewardship through Science, Nature, and Art.

The resources are divided into ten units to make it easier to pick and mix, and links have been added wherever possible so that you can link the outside and inside activities together. This is just a scaffolding. Use these resources however suits your family or class – everyone will have a slightly different take.

We’d love to hear how you've got on pass on your ideas and improvements, share feedback with our growing community of moth whisperers. We especially love to hear stories from the tamariki and see the pictures they’ve created.

We hope these resources make it a little easier for the amazing teaching staff across NZ to share our moth love with their tamariki but we know you are the real experts so please help us keep improving this resource. Follow the Ahi Pepe MothNet Facebook page or join the Ahi Pepe Whanau Facebook group and share examples of how you’ve integrated the units into the kura/school curriculum to inspire the community.

There's something here for every age, from 3 to 103. Do share with your family and friends.

Ahi Pepe MothNet
1: Ahi Pepe MothNet

This unit introduces Ahi Pepe and a few of the over 2000 moth species found in Aotearoa. Most (over 90%) of these moths are found only in New Zealand (endemic to New Zealand).

Unit 2: Kā Manu o Rēhua
2: Kā Manu o Rēhua

Where do moths come from and what do they look like? Get to know some of New Zealand's Native moths. Kāi Tahu share their origin of the moth legend.

Te pepe – The Moth
3: Te pepe – The moth

What do you call that part? How does the life cycle work again? This unit has crosswords and drawing pages describing: What the parts of a moth are called, the life cycle of a moth, metamorphosis.

He aha te ki a te pepe? What does the moth eat?
4: He aha te ki a te pepe? What does the moth eat?

Match the New Zealand Native moths to the plants they eat and play the Tukutuku kai – food web cards.

Kei hea au? – Where am I?
5: Kei hea au? – Where am I?

Geography, maps, stories. Different moths occur in different places so we have split Aotearoa up into EIGHT regions based on the distribution of moths. Ngā Puka Whakamārama o te Pepe Nui are available for all of Aotearoa. Talk about why different moths are found in different places.

He aha tātou a mātai ai? – Why study Moths?
6: He aha tātou a mātai ai? – Why study moths?

Explore the benefits of studying moths. Make your own kete – baskets, draw a mind map and explore all the ways that moths are important from music to pollination and everything in between.

Whakaaiai – Pollination
7: Whakaaiai – Pollination

The secret service. Moths are important pollinators. Draw your best flower and post the pictures. If you have access to a magnifying glass or microscope this is a good time to look at flower structure and pollen.

Mā wai kā pepe a kai? Who eats the moth?
8: Mā wai kā pepe a kai? Who eats the moth?

One of the most important roles moths play in the ecosystem is to be food for other animals. Many native birds, reptiles, other insects and spiders all rely on an abundance of moths in all their forms for food. It's the circle of life. Unfortunately they are also an important food source for introduced pests like mice, rats and hedgehogs. Ahi Pepe MothNet uses tracking tunnels to see how many of these are around our moth traps.

Ahakoa taku iti – the smallest can be mighty
9: Ahakoa taku iti – The smallest can be mighty

Each of us alone can only do so much but by working together we can collect a lot of data. By all using the same methods (e.g., traps) together we can work out where our moths are and how they are getting on. Once we know where our precious moths are struggling we can start to work out why and hopefully help them get back on their feet/wings. Moths play many important roles in the ecosystem.

10: Te Whakamātau - The experiment