A Capital idea

This programme is available from the 27th July 2015.

About the “A Capital Idea” programme

A 90 minute visit with a focus on the establishment of Parliament in Wellington in 1865.The visit will allow students to develop understandings of the significance of locating Parliament in Wellington using a social enquiry process. The impact of capital city status on Wellington and the evolution of the parliamentary precincts will be explored through a 15 minute presentation in the Education Centre including visual images and discussion points. This will be followed by visits to venues within the Parliamentary precincts. Information can be tailored to a variety of age levels.

Some reference will be made to Parliament’s function in terms of national decision making and its role in representing New Zealanders. For more detailed discussion on the structure of Parliament please refer to the resources available on our website or book the ‘How Parliament Works’ visit option.

As part of the visit students will visit the following venues within the precincts subject to availability:

  • a select committee room
  • The Parliamentary Library
  • The debating chamber of the House of Representatives
  • The Legislative Council Chamber
  • The Grand Hall.
  • The Banquet Hall
  • Base Isolation System (earthquake proofing)

As part of the introduction students will be asked to consider the following as they move through the precincts:

  • How does the location of Parliament in Wellington reflect the work it does on behalf of the people of New Zealand?
  • What does the evolution of the various buildings from 1865 to present day tell you about Parliament and its role in the lives of New Zealanders?
  • How are the people of New Zealand celebrated and represented in the interior decoration of the buildings? Has this changed over time?
  • What other examples of change do you notice in the way people interact with and access Parliament and its buildings?
  • What sense of connection do you have to Parliament, its buildings and Wellington as the capital city of New Zealand?

Group size

Maximum group size is 42 including adults. Larger groups can be accommodated by arranging multiple tours with a minimum of ½ hour between each group (they cannot run consecutively). Standard adult to student ratios apply.

Preparing for the programme

Information about the work of Parliament will be briefly covered at the beginning of the programme however students will benefit from having some understanding of the work of Parliament before the visit. Online teaching resources are available to help with this or you can request hardcopy resources through Education Services. Resources

Booking information

This programme is available from the 27th July 2015.

Bookings are essential.  Contact Education Services (F: +64 4 472 8206 or T: +64 4 817 9565) as early as possible once you have a visit in mind so we can help with planning your visit and find the best dates for your group.

To request a booking, download the booking form from the ‘Related content 'area below, complete the fields, and fax or email the form to us. Please ensure that you indicate the name of the programme you wish to book. We’ll contact you as soon as we can to confirm if your choice of time is available or discuss other options.

We also provide a risk assessment management (RAMs) form and an Education Services Visit Guideline to support your visit.