Click on the name of any course below to go to the page that contains a description of that course.

Art history 1
Art history 2
Classical music
Dance and ballet
Opera on video
French for starters
Living language

Book discussion
Countries of the world
Environmental science
Geology for starters

Our time
Probing five shakespearean villains
Social history
The American presidents
The history & social implications of food and drink
Cycle fun
Great movies
Historical amblers

Lunch group Tues
Lunch group Wed
Travel 1
Quiz time
Word and brain games

♦ART HISTORY 1: This very popular course covers European art after the Renaissance. The group meets 10am to 12pm on second and fourth Wednesdays.  Closed.

♦ART HISTORY 2: This equally popular course covers High Renaissance and Baroque. The group meets 10am to 12pm on first and third Wednesdays. Availability limited.

♦ASTRONOMY: The night sky opens up to show things we may have only dreamed of! The group meets at the Planetarium from 1.30pm to 3.30pm on the first Thursday following the second Wednesday of each month.

♦BOOK DISCUSSION: Meeting on the afternoon of the fourth Wednesday of every month, in the Hastings Library, the group discusses a wide range of books of interest.

♦CLASSICAL MUSIC: The group listens to the music of a variety of composers, based on video recordings and learning about different styles and how music progressed. Meets monthly, second Tuesday afternoon.

♦CLASSICS FOR STARTERS: Includes some of the subjects in classical studies like Roman religion and Greek philosophy and science.  Day and time to be decided.

♦COUNTRIES OF THE WORLD: Looking at countries in depth, aspects of their people, history, culture, language, religions, food, geographical features and their place in the world. Meets second Thursday of the month 2 till 4.

♦CURRENT ISSUES: Members take turns in preparing to give an informed talk on a current issue of their own choice, following which there will be general discussion on that issue. The group will meet monthly in the afternoons of the second Wednesday each month.

♦CYCLE FUN: This group will hit the cycle-ways around Hawke’s Bay in the mornings of the third Wednesday each month, weather permitting! This is an opportunity for people who want to cycle for fun and will not suit serious cyclists or keep-fit fanatics! Course full, but waiting list available.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE: This group focuses on the science involved in areas where humanity is impinging on the limits of resources which the Planet Earth can supply.  Participants must have access to the internet and email, and a willingness to share in the research will help us learn more.  The group meets on the third Wednesday of the month from 10am to 12 noon

♦DANCE AND BALLET: A course that will appeal to lovers of ballet and other performed dance.  Meeting in the afternoons of the third Wednesday each month to watch DVDs of ballet and other dance.

♦FRENCH CONVERSATION GROUP: For members who are not fluent French speakers but would like to improve their conversation skills and learn more about this beautiful, romantic language.  Meeting on the third Thursday afternoon of the month.

♦FRENCH FOR STARTERS: Basic conversational and grammatical French to people whose French is rusty or non-existent.  The Group will meet on the First and Third Monday mornings each month in Taradale.

♦GEOLOGY FOR STARTERS: As in previous years, this course, led by Richard Jennings, will cover the basics of geology, using some ‘teaching’ and a lot of pictures.  The course will concentrate on general rather than New Zealand geology and will cover Petrology (rocks), Mineralogy (minerals), Geomorphology (landscape), Tectonics (folding and faulting), and Palaeontology (fossils).  The group will meet in the Summerset Village, Ada Street, Hastings on the first Friday of each month from February to November

♦GREAT MOVIES: Members meet to watch DVDs of movies during the winter months.  Depending on the number of members interested, the films could be shown at different venues on different days. The group meets on the afternoon of the third Thursday each winter month.

♦GREEK AND ROMAN MYTHOLOGY:  Their influence on art and culture in the western world.  References to them appear everywhere, in art, in music, in literature, in science and even astronomy.  This would start with Homer and Hesiod and then move to Virgil and Ovid.  The group will meet on the third Thursday morning of the month.

♦GREENFINGERS: Meeting on the first Tuesday morning each month, the group shares gardening tips, exchanges ideas (and plants), visits gardens, and listens to talks on how the experts do things.  Availability is limited.

♦HISTORICAL AMBLERS: Historical Amblers are a friendly group that meets on the fourth Thursday afternoon of each month (weather permitting), to walk to places of historical interest in Hastings, Napier and Central Hawke’s Bay.

♦ ITALIAN: Members learn Italian language and culture.   The course is currently full but a waiting list is available   Group meets first and third Friday mornings, Ciao!

♦LIVING LANGUAGE – NEW WORDS:  A course which will activate your reading knowledge and increase your word power. As a member of the group, if you see a word and don’t know its meaning, you write it down in your notebook, look up its meaning in a good dictionary (NOT Wikipedia) and add the meaning into your notebook. Try to have 2-3 words each month. When the group meets, on the second Monday morning, each member reads their new words to see if others know the meanings, thus expanding everyone’s vocabulary; (for example, what is a Quahog?). After tea and biscuits, members share their interpretive reactions to a single word or phrase; (examples: ‘FIRST’ and ‘TELEGRAPH POLES’).

♦LUNCH GROUP TUESDAY: The group meets on fourth Tuesday each month, to have lunch at a different restaurant each time.

♦LUNCH GROUP: WEDNESDAY: The group meets on third Wednesday each month, to have lunch at a different restaurant each time.

♦MAHJONG: This group meets every Wednesday morning in the Hastings Library to play mahjong.

METEOROLOGY: This group meets from 2 pm- 3.30 pm on the 4th Thursday of each month in the former art gallery at the Hastings Library.  

♦OPERA ON VIDEO: On the second Thursday afternoon each month this group meets to watch DVDs of operas.

♦OUR TIME – THE HISTORY OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY:  A broad view of things that happened in the world during the twentieth century; group members will chose items or people of historical significance, will do some research, and will present to the group 5-10 minutes of captivating information on their chosen subject.  The field is limitless, so the presentations and discussions following will be mind-broadening and, probably, entertaining!  The Group will meet on the First Monday of each month (February to November) at 1.30pm at 999 Norton Road, Hastings, the home of the host, Julia Mabbett.  Richard Jennings will convene.

♦PETANQUE:  The group will meet every Thursday morning to play petanque, tuition will be given.

♦PETANQUE AT TWILIGHT: Played in the summer months only, at 6.30pm every Monday.

♦PROBING FIVE SHAKESPEAREAN VILLAINS. Membership for the Feb – Jul session is full.  Places are open for the repeat Jun to Nov session. This group will meet six times on the first Monday morning of the month and explore how Shakespeare created villains that we can hate, forgive, or empathise with. This is purely a discussion group, not an essay writing group. Members read the play (for homework) and jot down their responses to a given discussion question. These notes form the starting point of our discussion. The five villains are Macbeth, Edmund, Richard 111, Iago and Shylock.

♦ QUIZ TIME: Meeting on the 3rd Monday of the month, members spend an enjoyable couple of hours offering answers to a quiz prepared by a member of the group. Members prepare and deliver a quiz for the group once during the ensuing year. The format of the quiz will depend on the member presenting. Meeting at a time/day to be decided when registrations are collected. Quizzes concentrate on general knowledge.

♦RUMMIKUB: At Hastings Library on first and third Friday mornings, members meet to play Rummikub.

♦SOCIAL HISTORY: In this course, members research and discuss how people lived at a particular time. Meetings are in the mornings of the first and third Wednesdays each month.

♦THE AMERICAN PRESIDENTS: In the first year of the Trump presidency, the group will study, in order, the lives of the 43 men, from Washington to Obama, who have been US Presidents.  Members of the group will be expected to research the lives of these men and make informal, 15-minute presentations to the Group.  Convened by Richard Jennings, the group will meet at Richard’s home in the Summerset Village in Ada Street, Hastings, at a time to be arranged to suit the availability of the U3A members who express interest.

♦THE HISTORY AND SOCIAL IMPLICATIONS OF FOOD AND DRINK:  on the way we live in the 21st century.  First Thursday afternoon in the month.

♦THE STORY OF THE 20th  CENTURY.  The story of our times.  Group members will be required to research and present from world history.  First Monday afternoon in the month. 

♦TRAVEL 1: This very sociable group meets on second and fourth Thursday mornings to hear accounts of travel to various countries and to get travel advice.

♦TRAVEL 2: The very popular Travel group 1 has been full for some time. To meet demand, we have started a new group, Travel 2, along the same lines as the existing group, and sometimes using the same speakers. The new group will meet on the third Tuesday afternoon of the month.

♦WORD GAMES AND BRAIN GAMES: Meeting on the afternoon of the first Tuesday each month.  Brains are stimulated by the puzzles and games, while word power is increased.

♦WRITING: Through in-meeting exercises and homework, members stretch themselves in factual and creative writing, using both prose and poetry.  At the second and fourth Friday morning meetings, members are encouraged and helped by group interaction.