PLAY in Upper Hutt

Play is essential to healthy brain development and enables children to interact in the world around them. Play allows children to experience fun, joy and laughter in a way that is important to them. It’s also where they can practice life skills while developing imagination, dexterity, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength.

The positive benefits of play include:

  • Being physically active in a fun way that develops fundamental movement skills
  • Encouraging self-directed creativity and innovation
  • Improving social and emotional connection
  • Improving a young person’s understanding of their relationship with the physical environment
  • Improving resilience, independence and leadership by determining their own outcomes
  • Aiding better decision-making based around elements of challenge and risk.

Activation are dedicated to bringing you activities, adventures, events and information about Play in our Region.

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Whats on

September: Traditional Māori Play 

Māori culture is an integral part of life in New Zealand, influencing everything.  Māori culture history, language and traditions are central to New Zealand’s identity. 

In the month of September we have plenty installed for you to embrace the opportunity of our traditional Māori play through ways of learning your own Mihi or creating a Taniwha mask or even completing our Waka colouring competition. Check out our calendar of activities(PDF, 458KB)

Plus heaps more with Te Wā Tuku Reo Māori learning new kupu - words in Te reo Māori and also incorporating Mental Health (Hauora) Awareness week by sharing ways to include Māori culture through positive health and wellbeing.  Follow Activation on Facebook for regular updates 

Week 1: Waka Colouring in Competition(PDF, 611KB)

Week 2: Make your very own Taniwha Mask(PDF, 53KB) and Learn your very own Mihi(PDF, 997KB)

Week 3: Te Reo Māori week - Learning kupu in Te Reo Māori

Greetings and Farewell Flashcards(PDF, 63MB)

Physical Activity Flashcards(PDF, 2MB)

Colours Flashcards(PDF, 2MB)

Numbers Flashcards(PDF, 1MB)

Days Flashcards(PDF, 513KB)

Month and Season Flashcards(PDF, 11MB)

 Week 4:  Hauora Awareness week(PDF, 1MB) - Include Māori culture through positive health and wellbeing.


Up and Coming Play

October: Pet Play 

Do you have a pet dog or a pet cat at home? If so, you know that special feeling you get when you arrive home after a long day of school to be greeted with a wagging tail and a few excited licks to the face or maybe you have a cat at home instead. When you're down in the dumps, your furry and purr-y friend is sure to be there to snuggle up beside you to let you know everything is going to be just fine.That is why we encourage you to Pet Play for October.  We hope today's Wonder of the Day was your best friend! Keep the fun going when you check out the following activities with a friend or family member

Week 1 - Activities (Information will be out soon)

Week 2 - Activities

Week 3 - Activities

Week 4 - Activities


November: Kite Play

Watch this space!!

December: Water Play

Watch this space!


Enjoyed so much you want more

 July: Teddy Bear Play bits and pieces you can give a go

  1. How to make your very own Teddy Bear head band(PDF, 402KB)
  2. How to make your very own Teddy Bear picnic basket(PDF, 73KB)


August:  #everydayofplay activities you may have missed

Week 1: Play Activities(PDF, 39KB)

Week 2: Play Activities(PDF, 40KB)

Week 3:  Play Activities(PDF, 41KB)

Week 4:  Play Activities(PDF, 40KB)




More information about the benefits of Play is available on the Sport New Zealand website.