The philosophy guiding teaching and learning emphasises the importance of: embracing the unique individuality of children and families; nurturing trusting and collaborative relationships; recognising children’s play as important learning; embracing children as confident and competent learners; and valuing and using Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.
Children are respected as capable learners. Their communication is encouraged and valued. ERO observed examples of teachers responding meaningfully to children’s language cues, both verbal and non-verbal. Teachers support and encourage children’s language through a range of useful strategies.
Warm positive relationships between teachers and children are evident. Teachers affirm and support children’s interests and encourage their development through dialogue. A settled tone prevails. Regular routines are well-established and children demonstrate a sense of belonging.
Considered decision making has enhanced opportunities for teaching and learning. An example is the emphasis on low child-to-teacher ratios and the small size of groups.
Centre values are clearly reflected in the curriculum experienced by infants and toddlers. This includes practices that support children to develop secure attachments such as the primary caregiver approach. Unhurried interactions are evident.
Older children are supported to develop their basic literacy and numeracy skills through play.
Teachers make good use of the local, inner-city environment to offer stimulating learning opportunities. ‘Forest’ sessions are a recent initiative that promotes place-based learning.
Parents’ aspirations are sought and valued. An online programme sharing children’s learning stories has increased the numerous ways teachers and families communicate and work in partnership.
A strength of the service is the focus on developing teachers’ knowledge of te ao Māori. Regular practice includes many opportunities for children to celebrate and value te reo and te ao Māori.