My research aims to explore, support and embody culturally responsive teaching and learning in Aotearoa me Te Waipounamu.
There are three key themes to my work: the development of proficiency in te reo Māori, culturally responsive teaching, and the effectiveness of professional development for the cultural competence of teachers. My research informs my teaching by exploring the success factors for adults learning te reo Māori, including the best pedagogical approaches for developing proficiency in te reo. I use qualitative methods to reveal the nuances in Māori language learning as an expression of identity which may help or hinder language development. My PhD research articulated a set of optimal factors which, when present, can optimise language learning.
My most recent work has focused on meeting the needs of classroom teachers to become culturally responsive practitioners. I have collaborated with teachers to apply theories of culturally responsive teaching into daily practice. I am part of a team of researchers who have published a series of research-based practice guides for teachers. These books are grounded in Angus Macfarlane's theoretical framework: the Hikairo Schema for culturally responsive teaching.
My future research will focus on evaluating the effectiveness of the books as resources to support teachers to empower Māori students to achieve their goals with the support of whānau.
Central to all of my work is the firm conviction that the revival of te reo and tikanga Māori are foundational to Māori success and to the cohesion of New Zealand as a nation who cares for the well-being of our most vulnerable citizens.
- Clarke TH., Smith J., Ratima M., Macfarlane A., Macfarlane S., Maitland R., Davies L., Kururangi KM. and Stevens S. (2021) The Hikairo schema for secondary. Wellington: New Zealand Council for Educational Research.
- Shine B., Macfarlane A., Ratima M. and Smith J. (2021) E Tū kahikatea: developing psycho-cultural consciousness in the changeful world of rangatahi.Commissioned by Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga.
- Welch HT., Macfarlane AH., Ratima M., Skipwith SL. and Smith JP. (2021) Te Kura Tapa Whā: Embedding an indigenous model of wellbeing into the learning environment. Wellington: New Zealand Council for Educational Research.
- Goldsmith M., Macfarlane A., Ratima M. and Smith J. (2020) Practice Research: Implications for Culturally Responsive Teaching and Learning.Commissioned by Ngā Pae o te māramatanga.
- Ratima MT., Smith J. and Macfarlane A. (2020) The Hikairo Schema for Primary Culturally Responsive Teaching and Learning. 50.