About this resource

The histories of Deaf New Zealanders and the histories of New Zealand Sign Language (one of our three official languages) are inextricably linked. The Deaf community in Aotearoa New Zealand is a culture unique to this place, and this resource explores its histories including:

  • oral education and the banning of all signing in education for 100 years until the 1970s
  • the passing of the 2006 New Zealand Sign Language Act
  • sculptures by deafblind and Deaf artists
  • Rūaumoko, the marae for the deaf, which enables Māori Deaf to access their Māori identity and practices
  • the World Games for the Deaf – held here in 1989.

All content is provided in New Zealand Sign Language, making it an accessible and inclusive resource particularly suited for teaching Deaf students. The teacher support material for this resource (also all in New Zealand Sign Language) provides guidance on key considerations for teaching Deaf histories.


Year Level:

Years 7-8, Years 9-10

Resource Type:

Teaching Resource

Reading Level:




Content Type:

Google Slides