Teaching Notes

Achievement Objectives: Personal Reading, Close reading, Critical Thinking

Comprehension Questions

  • What clues let Annie know she has travelled back in time?
  • What does the word ‘mediate’ mean? (p23)
  • Why is Kahurangi nervous when he first meets Ken?
  • Describe how members are elected to the Council of Birds. Name the members.
  • Who tells Annie which direction Te Hōkioi has taken Moana?
  • How does baby Kakama help Annie and her friends escape from the island?
  • What tree does Moana use to make her therapeutic tea?
  • Chief Ahuru is worried the moa won’t be able to cross the channel. Why?
  • What is Annie’s role in the battle?
  • After Moa’s death Annie is angry with Kuia? Why?
  • Who does Fantasia think ‘conquered flight’ as predicted in the prophecy?
  • Annie’s mum is studying bullying. What does Annie suggest to stop bullying?

Discussion Questions

  • Effigy mounds are real. Brainstorm for ideas why these mounds might exist.
  • Describe Annie’s attitude to Toa at the beginning of the story. How does her attitude towards the warrior change as the story
  • progresses. Why?
  • Based on what you know about them, describe the jobs Moana and Kahurangi might have if they grew up in modern times.
  • Do you think the birds’ election system is fair? Discuss other ways to elect a Council.
  • Te Hōkioi and Toka are bullies. Describe some bullying behaviours from the story. Discuss ways to combat bullying.


  • Write a kite-song and perform it for the class. It could be a haiku or a rap poem.
  • You’ve just come face-to-face with a moa! Write the newspaper story.
  • Create a legend explaining why moa have disappeared.
  • Write and present a plan for conserving an endangered bird species.
  • Write your own prophecy and display it on a stone.
  • Write instructions for building hot air balloon.
  • Imagine you are Annie. Write a postcard to Lauren describing your adventures.
  • On a map, trace Annie’s journey within New Zealand. Include the following jumbled place names: Papamoa, Mauao, Tokaanu, Huka
  • Falls, Te Puia o Whakaari, Te Urewera forest, Taupō, Huka Falls, Lake Tarawera, Tongariro. Using the story, can you cite one interesting fact about each of these places?
  • Design a New Zealand postage stamp featuring a native bird.
  • Otukapuarangi or the Pink Terraces were destroyed in 1886. Do some research to find out what happened to them.
  • Design and construct a kite using recycled materials. Hold a class kite-flying competition.