“Tuakana-Teina” is the Maori concept of “older sibling - younger sibling

“Mā te Tuakana kā tōtika te Tēina. Ma te Tēina kā tōtika te Tuakana”

“From the older sibling the younger one learns the right way to do things, and from the younger sibling the older one learns to be tolerant”

What does it mean?

Tuakana-Teina refers to the relationship between the older sibling (Tuakana) and the younger sibling (Teina) and is specific to teaching and learning in the Māori context. Within teaching and learning contexts, this can take a variety of forms:

  • Peer to peer – Teina teaches Teina, Tuakana teaches Tuakana.

  • Older to younger – the Tuakana has the knowledge and content to pass on to the Teina.

  • Younger to older – the Teina has some skills in an area that the Tuakana does not and is able to teach the Tuakana.

  • Able to less able – the learner may not be as able in an area, and someone more skilled can teach what is required.

(Sourced: Turuki Maori Health Workforce Strategy “Growing our own”

SLIANZ Tuakana Teina Buddy Mentoring Programme - what is it?

Our Tuakana/Teina buddy programme is a reciprocal personal development style relationship in which a more experienced Interpreter (Tuakana) helps to guide someone less experienced (Teina). It is a shared learning and development partnership between someone with experience and someone who wants to learn. Resulting in mutual reflection, learning and growing of both Tuakana and Teina.

This 2 year programme offers new interpreting graduates a confidential and safe environment to develop, reflect and transition from learning  interpreting to ‘being’ an interpreter.  The Teina can bring their work dilemmas or learning opportunities to the sessions. The Tuakana/Teina (buddy) relationship offers support and deliberation on professional practice through a mix of skill mentoring, coupled with emotional well-being, logistical information sharing and professional mindfulness.

How does it work?

SLIANZ encourages a reciprocal arrangement between Teina and their Tuakana­ to include:

  • Phone,

  • Text,

  • Email,

  • Skype,

  • or meeting face to face  

This aspect of the programme is flexible to best suit the needs of each individual partnership; however the buddies are expected to make  contact on a regular basis if all PD points are to be achieved (suggested guidelines below).

What do we include in these buddy sessions?

Tuakana/Teina can find an example of   guidelines or a proposed session checklist  in the SLIANZ Tuakana/Teina private buddy page. This is a guide only of what  both parties can include in each session and buddies are welcome to adapt it to suit their own unique pairing requirements.

This programme  is NOT formal supervision.

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