Student Life: The Ara Tramping Club

Being a student is about hard work, striving to attain your goals and being your best possible self. But all work and no fun is a sure fire way to burn yourself out…even the most conscientious student needs to take a little down time to recharge those batteries.

Hard work is good but the body also needs emotional nourishment…

To that end there are a number of different clubs at Ara which cater to different interests. From sports clubs, cultural clubs to groups for social get togethers there are groups for everyone.

One activity that is personally close to my heart is tramping. Tramping is the word we use in New Zealand to describe hiking/walking trips into the outdoors. A tramp could range from a couple of hours walking to monster 10+ day expeditions to remote Wilderness Areas. There is no better way to experience New Zealand’s legendary scenic delights that by walking there on your own two feet.

Classic New Zealand tramping: sand beaches, swing-bridges and bush….
…..and mountain and stream…

Here at Ara we actually have a student tramping club which caters to this interest. The Ara Tramping Club was set up in 2019 by a group of students and aims to assist both the novice and the experienced back country trekker to find experience and companionship while outdoors.

Article about the Ara Tramping Club in the Feb/Mar edition of Waha Korero

There is a long history of club tramping in this country and it is an excellent way to find people with a similar interest in the outdoors. It also allows you to access the skills and experience more seasoned trampers have and is the best way to begin your introduction to this most excellent pursuit.

Photos of a 2019 Ara Tramping Club trip to Woolshed Creek, Mt Somers

There is a recent article in the Ara student magazine, Waha Korero (February/March 2020) about the Ara Tramping Club. It is well worth a read if you are looking to join a club to get outdoors. They are actively seeking members (both experienced and inexperienced) and would love to hear from you.

Port William Hut, Rakuira, backcountry huts are the focus of tramping in New Zealand


You can contact the club via email at or on Facebook @AraTramping. The club also advertises their regular planning meetings around the Campus. If you are a student, love the forests and hills and want to experience the essence of New Zealand then you should drop them a line.

I hope to see many of you out in the backcountry…

….may your lunches be dry, your huts empty and your wood sheds full….

Waitangi Day 2020…

Thursday February 6th 2020 is a public holiday in New Zealand…it is the day we celebrate the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi.

The meeting house at Waitangi

The Treaty was signed in 1840 by representatives of the Crown and 45 Maori chiefs at Waitangi in the Bay of Islands. Copies of the Treaty were then taken around the country and signed by various chiefs and sub chiefs.

The actual Treaty of Waitangi

Waitangi Day was officially commemorated for the first time in 1934, and became a public holiday in 1974

If you would like to know more about the history of the Treaty, and the social, legal, and political impact the Treaty has had on life in Aotearoa, there many resources available in the library & online. Here are a few examples:

WishartbookWishart, Ian. (2012) The Great divide: the story of New Zealand & its treaty

Claudia Orange    Orange, C. (1989). The story of a Treaty

Vincent O'Malley   O’Malley, V. (2010). The Treaty of Waitangi companion

The Treaty of Waitangi/Te Tiriti O Waitangi, from the Waitangi Tribunal website

If you are planning on staying home on Thursday then tune into Maori TV . There will be extensive coverage of Waitangi Day celebrations from around the country.

Whatever you do on February the 6th, enjoy the day, and celebrate the uniqueness that is Aotearoa New Zealand.


Christmas holiday hours 2019/2020

The Christmas holiday season and the end of the academic year are upon us. As a part of the holiday break over December and January our hours of operation will be changing.

For the period Monday 16th December 2019 -Sunday 26th January 2020 the Library will observe the following hours:



Our normal hours of operation will resume on Monday 3rd February 2020. Please note we will be closed on Thursday the 6th February for Waitangi Day.

From all of us at the Library we wish you a safe and happy Summer break.


Hinewai Reserve: A Story of the Regeneration of Native Forest

When I first heard of Hugh Wilson and the Hinewai Forest Restoration Project, it immediately reminded me of one of one my favorite books, The Man Who Planted Trees. But, it was much later when I found out that Hugh didn’t actually plant any trees. He allowed nature to plant them instead. And nature has been doing well. After 30 years, the reserve is full of native trees and bursting with wildlife.


                        Main gate to Hinewai Reserve, author Michal Klajban, cc-by-SA 4.0

It all began in the ‘70s when Maurice White set up the Maurice White Native Forest Trust. White’s dream was simple but not easy: To find land and start a regeneration project on Banks Peninsula, White’s home, where just 1% of native forest remained. The rest of it had been deforested by European colonizers.

In 1986, White attended a Forest and Bird meeting where he met Hugh Wilson. That meeting changed their lives forever. Wilson, an avid botanist, dreamed about the possibility of land where nature could be left to regenerate without human influence. Maurice, more businessman than botanist, wanted the same thing but didn’t necessarily have the knowledge to do so.

Maurice White and Hugh Wilson in 2017, author Schwede66, CC-BY-SA 4.0

In 1987, Maurice White Native Forest Trust purchased 109 hectares of land. That became the core of Hinewai. Four years later, the trust purchased a neighboring farm and added over 1100 hectares to the reserve.

Now, 32 years later, the reserve consists of 1250 hectares and there are a couple of new, smaller reserves attached. It’s incredible to see pictures from the ‘80s when there was nothing but pasture and gorse (an extremely invasive prickly plant native to Western Europe and Northern Africa) knowing that now there is a forest of native Mānuka and Kānuka trees and other native saplings.

Map: Hinewai Reserve, Long Bay, Banks Peninsula

A documentary, Fools and Dreamers, was recently released about the reserve, the title taken from an early newspaper article in which a local farmer claimed White and Wilson to be “fools and dreamers” for wanting to convert “productive” pasture back into native forest. The documentary is available online and it’s a heart-warming and inspiring watch. It’s 30 minutes short and sums up the history of the reserve together with providing a snapshot of Hugh’s golden personality, relentless hard work and passion for the project.

The reserve is open to the public for free but welcomes donations. If you decide to go there, you’ll find something for everyone: waterfalls to admire, tramping tracks of various grades, viewpoints towards the ocean and Akaroa, and a visitors’ centre. The visitors’ centre is one of the gems of the reserve. It contains books handwritten and illustrated by Hugh on local fauna and flora together with other original materials from which you can learn all about the history of the reserve.

Overview of the reserve with Otanerito Bay in the back, author Michal Klajban, CC-BY-SA 4.0

White and Wilson dreamed big – perhaps too big for most of the local population at that time. But they have shown us that with patience and minimal input, nature can regenerate itself. It does not need humans to “manage” it.

Hinewai brings with it hopes for the future. With 99% of Banks Peninsula deforested, it’s food for the soul to see some of its lost treasure return, especially now with climate change making the need for native forest more important than ever before.

Kererū (New Zealand pidgeon) is a common citizen of Hinewai, author Judi Lapsley Miller, CC-BY 4.0

Hinewai reserve is one of the most successful private conservation initiatives in New Zealand. If you’re looking for a place where you can relax and recharge, you can find the reserve at 632 Long Bay Road R.D.3, Akaroa 7583.

Michal Klajban, Assistant Librarian

Reach your goals the SMART way

We all have goals – things we would like to achieve. As a tertiary student, it’s savvy to prioritise your goals.

You may have goals to:

  • Get higher grades in your assessments
  • Take a holiday after the exams

These are worthy goals – you’ll feel great when you make them happen. To reach your goals, you need to use a proven way to get started.

You need to set SMART goals to ensure that you get what you want. SMART typically stands for:

S: Specific

M: Measurable

A: Achievable

R: Relevant

T: Time-bound

Let’s take a look at 2 examples of SMART goals in action:


I want to score better grades


I want to score an A- or higher in each of my courses.


Tomorrow at 2 pm, I will access the Ara Learning Services Exams and Tests resources

I will note down the advice given and take steps to study more effectively.


Tomorrow, after accessing the Exams and Tests resources, I’ll create a weekly time schedule. I’ll use the tips found in:

Organising Your Time

Organising Your Time handout

My schedule will show my class times, part-time work hours, self-study times, breaks and leisure times.

I’ll plan enough time each week to study each course.

I’ll consistently use improved learning strategies based on the Exams and Tests resources and:

How to Learn

How to learn handout


I have the potential to score better grades, as I have obtained good grades like B.

Excellent grades will jump-start my career when I graduate.

I’ll be more likely to get an attractive job offer sooner.

My self-confidence will increase.


In the coming exams, I’ll be scoring more A- or higher grades in my courses.

In a year’s time, I’ll have more A- or better grades.


I want to save for my holiday

Specific: I’d like to save $200 for my holiday in Nelson.


I’ll take a close look at my finances tomorrow – my monthly income and expenses.

I’ll write down the ways I can reduce my spending.

I’ll think of new part-time work to look for.


Every Saturday I’ll record my savings, income and expenses.


I would like a Nelson holiday with friends during the summer break. It would be a reward for my hard work.


I’ll have saved $200 in 6 weeks’ time (I’ve calculated that I can save $33.33 per week).

I’ll go on my Nelson holiday in mid-January 2020.

Saving money regularly is a great habit to develop. But are you doing everything you can to protect your money and financial information?

Use these 14 Ways to Protect Your Money and Financial information

These 2 examples above show that setting SMART goals makes them more than just wishes or dreams. SMART goals give you focus and clarity regarding:

  • What exactly is your goal? (Specific)
  • What exactly must you do, by what deadline? (Measurable & Achievable)
  • Why and how are your goals important to you? (Relevant)
  • When can you reasonably expect to reach your goals? (Time-bound)


How to stay the course and reach your SMART goals

How do you stay on track with the goals you’ve set? Some ways are:

  • Vision: Create a vision board or vision screen – look for attractive pictures, whether hard copy or online. Display in prominent places the pictures of your goals e.g. photos of the places where you plan to holiday. Make the pictures a part of your phone or computer home screen.
  • Reminders: Give yourself reminders – you can use phone apps or a digital/hard copy organiser.
  • Reward: Reward yourself for the milestones achieved, to sustain your momentum towards reaching your goals. Treat yourself to a special meal or a present.


Step 1: Write your SMART goals.

Step 2: Keep yourself rewarded and motivated.

Step 3: Stay the course and walk the talk.

Step 4: Relish reaching your goals. Rejoice.


Start making and carrying out SMART goals to succeed. Check out these videos to find out more:

All the best and good luck!

Take action and make all your SMART goals come true


Leonard Yeo

Learning Services

Its a knockout….grand final today….

‘It’s a Knockout’ – health and wellbeing activity for students with a great social atmosphere!

Jill Milburn (hospitality tutor) and Mark Wheatley (automotive tutor) have based this challenge on the British TV programme.

There are four teams; Fox Harriers, Aoraki United, Godley City and Coupland Athletics each led by tutors. Arnold Prasad (automotive), Joanne Fraser (business), Cody McMinn (painting & decorating) and Steve Le Corre (hospitality).


Every student who is enrolled at our campus has been put into four groups. If students can’t make it, they can still add points to their teams with other activities throughout the day.

  1. Outdoor Education – treasure hunt
  2. ‘Ara’s got talent’ singers’ rappers’ rhymers’ dancers and poets
  3. ‘Blind folded cake decorating’. A member from each team was given instructions on decorating a cup cake blind-folded from the other members of the team
  4. ‘Hungry Hippos’
  5. ‘Ara quiz day’ – music, general knowledge, films
  6. ‘Ara Kahootz’
  7. Inflatable obstacle courses on the green (today). Come and check it out!

Grand final today and there will a huge Barbecue 4-5pm thanks to Gene Foster and Wally Katene.


Thanks to Amanda from Fonterra who has been supporting us by donating cheeses and will attend prize giving and Leonie Rasmussen for being so supportive and contributing to every event.


Prize Money – 1st $300, 2nd $150, 3rd $75, 4th $50 and a trophy presentation from Fonterra.

Events have been held monthly on a Wednesday 3- 4pm followed by a barbecue – thanks Gene and Wally (hospitality tutors).

Helen Purdon

Library Assistant- Timaru Campus

Ara closed for Canterbury Anniversary Day, Friday the 15th November

Canterbury Anniversary Day (Show Day) is on Friday the 15th November so Ara Institute of Canterbury (Christchurch and Ashburton campuses only) will be closed for the day. Canterbury Anniversary Day commemorates the founding of Canterbury Province in the 1850’s.

Emily Harper Christchurch from near the Gloucester Street Bridge 1857. Watercolour. Collection of Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū,

If you have no plans for the public holiday why not take a break and immerse yourself in all things rural by heading to the New Zealand Agricultural Show at their Canterbury Agricultural Park near Halswell.



Approximately 100,000 people visit the show which runs from 13th-15th November and there is something for everyone to enjoy. Attractions in 2019 include; food, drink, live music performances, circus acts, equestrian events, carnival rides, wood chopping and livestock competitions.

The 2018 Agricultural Show, New Zealand Agricultural Show website


A visit to the Show is a great day out for both adults and children…


New Zealand Agricultural Show: map of the Addington Grounds

For more information about the show go to the New Zealand Agricultural Show website.

The Library will be open as usual on Saturday the 16th and Sunday the 17th of November. Have a great break on Friday…..

A quick refresher on APA referencing

The end of the year is nigh (…yes, regardless of the wintery weather!…), and those scary submission deadlines for final assignments are also creeping dangerously close.

With so much research to complete and writing to do, APA referencing seems like a minor thing to be worried about. But don’t be fooled by the APA’s apparent insignificance; in some cases, the correct referencing can “make or break” your final mark, contributing to either “fail” or “pass”.

The Ara APA Referencing guide….an invaluable resource

So, let us recap one of the main rules of efficient referencing: as you are doing your research, don’t forget to make notes about the sources of your information. It does not matter whether or not those facts, figures or ideas are going to make it to the “final cut” of your assignment; but it is absolutely crucial that you have instant access to all your sources the moment you need to provide a reference. These notes may save you hours of precious time and oodles of unnecessary stress.

Remember to keep notes on your sources of information…

You don’t even need that much information for your in-text referencing: just keep in mind the golden rule of (Who, When, Where) – Author, Year and (in some cases) Page/Paragraph number, and you are sorted!

If in doubt, you can check out the APA resources or drop by one of the many workshops and Q&A clinics offered by Learning Services. Copies of the Ara APA Referencing Guide for students are available at the Library Service Desk.

Good luck with your assignments! 😊

Nataliya Oryshchuk, Learning Services Advisor

Labour Day Holiday: Monday 28th October 2019

Monday the 28th October 2019 is Labour Day. All Ara library branches will be closed on Monday. We will reopen at 8am on Tuesday the 29th October.

Labour Day has been a public holiday in New Zealand since 1900 and commemorates the struggle for the 8-hour working day and worker’s rights.


8 hour day
Slogan of the early Labour movement..8 hours labour, 8 hours recreation, 8 hours rest….

While many people will still be working the day can also be used for a multitude of alternate things. If the weather is pleasant, it can become a day of family outings and impromptu sporting events. You could stroll around the Christchurch Botanic Gardens, go to a cafe for a meal, have a picnic or spend time in the outdoors.

The Christchurch Botanic Gardens…lovely at this time of the year


From all of us here at Ara Library we hope you have a calm & restful holiday.