Early Childhood Education Hamilton

"Ehara taku toa I te toa takitahi engari he toa takitini I come not with my own strengths but bring with me the gifts, talents and strengths of my family, tribe and ancestors." - Te Whāriki

Our child led programme is supported by experienced kaiako who understand the developmental needs of the early years. We work in partnership with tamariki and whānau to create the local curriculum of Old MacDonald’s. We recognise that honouring mohiotanga, what the child already knows and brings with them, plays an integral part to the process of building a responsive curriculum.

We hold strong the ways of being from Te Whatu Pokeka and work to recognise and respond to the spirit of our tamariki – their wairua, mana and mauri as part of the make up of their holistic self. Alongside whānau aspirations for tamariki, we observe and honour the child’s strengths, interests and passions, as well as needs to provide a learning environment inclusive of, and empowering to, all tamariki.

Our research based approach to education upholds play as the champion of New Zealand’s early childhood curriculum, Te Whāriki. In supporting each child’s instinctive drive to learn through play we empower their views of themselves as capable and confident learners. Committed to creating a positive start to their learning journey we aim to bring childhood back to a place where tamariki are free to explore and develop the skills and attributes they need to become global citizens.

At their own pace, tamariki are able to develop a true understanding of their place within their world and discover their learner identity. Drawing on theorists Vygotsky, Piaget, Erikson and Bruner along with contemporary experts such as Lesley Rameka, Peter Gray, Nathan Wallis, Margaret Carr and Guy Claxton, we understand that learning comes in many forms. Socio-cultural or worlded, developmental, dispositional, spiritual, social and emotional and academic learning all have their role to play in the creating the pathways to future success. Kaiako recognise that these learning opportunities can be enhanced through meaningful, varied experiences with people, places and things. In this way, teachers are able to follow the cues of the learner, shaping their environment and curriculum planning to fit the needs of each tamiti. It is within the sharing of this knowledge and nurturing the freedom to learn that the true value of play takes hold and the learning becomes limitless.