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Key concepts in home economics

Key concepts are the big ideas and understandings that we hope will remain with our students long after they have left school.

Interrelatedness of the health and physical education key concepts

The underlying and interacting concepts of the health and physical education learning area (hauora, the socio-ecological perspective, health promotion, and attitudes and values) underpin and shape teaching and learning in health education.

Well-being hauora

Nutrition practices, food choices, and family dynamics affect and are affected by the interaction of the four dimensions of well-being: hauora, taha wairua, taha hinengaro, taha tinana, taha whānau.

Learn more - Health and Physical Education in the New Zealand Curriculum - The underlying concepts: hauora

Determinants of health

The factors that influence achievement of well-being for self, others, and society can be called determinants of health (as described by the World Health Organization).

These economic, environmental, social, political, and cultural determinants of health and lifestyle choices work together. They may compound or mitigate the effects of the others. The 'determinants of health' is a concept through which understanding of the socio-ecological perspective is developed.

Social justice

Addressing inequity in relation to food, nutrition, and family involves examining how attitudes and values affect the way we live and seeking alternative ways of thinking and behaving. For example, students might explore and promote the concept that everyone has the right to affordable, healthy food.


Sustainability involves management and use of resources such as water, energy, and food. It includes examination of the food system from an ethical perspective. Sustainability involves:

...learning how to make decisions that balance and integrate the long term future of the economy, the natural environment and the well-being of all communities, near and far, now and in the future.


Health promotion

Health promotion involves thinking critically and challenging a range of personal and societal nutrition-related perceptions, practices, and understandings.

Students learn to use the action competence cycle to identify, analyse, and address current issues and evaluate the actions taken to improve well-being.

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Last updated May 9, 2022