Click here to go to the Humanities Subject Selection Site

In the senior, school the Humanities Faculty is committed to making learning relevant to students. The focus is on finding contexts for learning that students are inspired by and provide opportunities for every student to be successful.


There is good access to technology with nearly 50 Chromebooks available to students for learning, research and writing, as well as the opportunity for students to bring their own devices.


The Radio and Media course has it's very own fit for purpose radio station that broadcasts to the local community.


Using Google Chrome apps. such as Google Classrooms, enables students to work collaboratively and access their work easily at home as well as at school. There are materials available online to support students' learning at Makoura.  



English in the Senior School

In English, students study, use, and enjoy language and literature communicated orally, visually, or in writing. Opportunities are provided throughout the year to build skills and be assessed internally in writing, reading, creating visual texts and close viewing. Students are also prepared for external exams at the end of the year and can choose to be assessed in this way. Students will aim to gain at least 16 credits at Level 1.

At Level 2 and 3 students develop their ability to independently analyse literature and to select texts that they connect with.

Term One sees us welcoming new Year 11s to our NCEA Level 1 course where we will be focusing on the themes of courage and compassion in texts. Using the documentaries The Cove and Blackfish students will develop their ability to write personal responses and express their opinions in persuasive writing.

At Level 2 we are looking at the big questions about the nature of good and evil. Term One will focus on developing a portfolio of writing in a variety of styles, both formal and creative.


Te Reo Māori

Tōku reo, tōku mana 
Tōku reo, tōku ohooho 
Tōku reo, tōku māpihi maurea 


Toi Maori offers students from Year 9 through to Year 13 a fun and interactive course of learning in these elements of Te Reo:
  • Korero (speaking)
  • Tuhituhi (writing)
  • Whakarongo (listening)
  • Panui (reading)
From the classroom to the kitchen, from the whare to the marae and wider community, students will be provided with every opportunity to experience success through a variety of learning opportunities. 

Creative learning experiences are also provided through Tikanga Maori and Maori Performing Arts and programmes are created within the NZQA/NCEA framework based around the learning needs and style of students. 

As well as working towards NCEA, senior students also work towards achieving a Te Waharoa Certificate – National Certificate Maori Level 2. 

Career pathways include: Journalism (Maori TV), Tourism, Teaching, Law, Government Agencies, Maori Health & Social Services and much more.

Social Studies & History


History enables students to develop authentic understanding of events by gaining a grasp of key concepts and underlying cause. Students are able to gain an understanding of historical events and explore how issues relate to a New Zealand context.

Level 1 is a course that will be Internally Assessed so all assessments will be assessed during the year in class. They are a combination of History and Social Studies standards. Term 1 we will be looking at Slave Labour, Sweatshops and the Adidas protest in Indonesia. We will use this content to complete Social Science Achievement Standard “Describe a social justice and human rights action.”

This Term Level 2 History will be looking at the Bastion Point land struggle. We will be using a range of sources for research to develop an understanding of how this is a significant event for New Zealanders.

Level 3 History will be looking at “Race Relations - When cultures collide.” We will be using Primary and Secondary sources to look at a range of contact between cultures in New Zealand and the consequences. This content will be used to complete History Achievement Standard “ Research an historical event or place of significance to New Zealanders, using primary and secondary sources.

Radio & Media

The Radio and Media course enables students to develop theoretical understandings and practical skills these two media genre. 

A range of Level 2 standards are available in both radio and journalism fields that are connected to the Creative Industries strand of the Vocational Pathways framework.

Students will learn: about the history and current status of radio in New Zealand; how to plan and broadcast radio programmes; how to record and edit audio; how to create social media postings; about the role of journalists and print media; about current events; interviewing techniques; news writing; and photo journalism.

The class will work digitally with all work posted online in a Google Classroom.  Students will gradually learn how to use the broadcasting equipment on our radio station - East FM.  You can listen to East FM on 88.1FM.