With Māori Language Week this week, a few people have been asking me how to type a vowel with a macron, especially outside of Word. I’ve talked about using macrons before, and as a commenter correctly pointed out, there is another way of putting a macron on a vowel, by loading and using the Māori keyboard on your computer.
- this is a fraction slower for touch typists, so having loaded the keyboard, you might want to create an autocorrect in Word for each word you need macrons in, for future use
- if you’re in a large organisation or Government department, your IT team may have disabled your ability to add keyboards; it’s worth checking though to see if you can.
Loading the Māori keyboard on your Windows computer
- Click Start ().
- Click Settings ().
Result: the Windows Settings screen displays.
- Click Time & Language.
- Click Language on the left-hand menu.
- Check if English (New Zealand) is listed under the Preferred languages heading:
- If yes, go to step 11.
- If no, go to step 6.
- Click Add preferred language.
- Type English in the text box.
- Scroll down the options, and select English (New Zealand).
- Click Next.
- Click Install.
Result: English (New Zealand) displays under Preferred languages.
- Click English (New Zealand), and click the up arrow to make it your preferred language.
- Click Options.
- Click Add keyboard.
- Scroll down, and click Māori.
- Close the Settings window.
- Click ENG (), in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen, next to the date and time.
- Highlight the English (New Zealand) Māori keyboard
Result: the code next to the time and date in the bottom right of your screen should change to . You have activated the Māori keyboard.
To use the Māori keyboard to put a macron on a vowel (on the a in Māori in this example):
- Type the capital M.
- Click the key to the left of the 1 on your keyboard (the key with ` and ~ on it).
- Click the vowel key you want to use (a, in this example).
Result: an a with a macron is typed, ā.
Notes: for a capital letter with a macron, hold down shift key when you click the letter key, as you normally would for a capital letter.
Troubleshooting: If this ever doesn’t work, check that you still have next to the date and time in the bottom right of your screen. You may need to re-select the English (New Zealand) Māori keyboard option.
Remember, if you want Word to autocorrect to having the word with a macron on the vowel, you can create an autocorrect in Word.