Kylee Stackhouse, Centre Manager
What inspired you to become an early childhood teacher?
I trained to be a primary school teacher and ended up relieving in some wonderful early childhood centres and this is where my passion lies. I then retrained in early childhood and never looked back. I’ve been working in early childhood education since 2006.
What do you love most about what you do?
Getting to watch children blossom and grow each day into the amazing individuals that they are.
What sets your centre apart?
We have an onsite chef who cooks nutritious meals that align with our healthy heart accreditation. We also have a separate kai room where the children can sit and enjoy their meals, using real crockery and glassware and having conversations with their teachers and peers – just like you would at home.
We are part of the Enviroschools programme in which we are teaching our future generation how to live sustainably. We grow vegetables in our garden, we have a worm farm to compost our green waste, we collect rain water to use in our environment – just to name a few! We have a wonderfully natural environment, both inside and out, in which our children are supported to explore and enjoy at their own pace.
What is your own personal early childhood philosophy?
I believe relationships are key so getting to know each child and their whānau and being able to play a significant part in their lives, is extremely important to me. I feel tamariki learn best in a child-led philosophy where they can engage, explore and investigate at their own pace and can take ownership of their own learning, in a safe, supportive and challenging environment.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I like to try new restaurants that are popping up around our beautiful city, go walking and catch up with friends.
Graduate Diploma in ECE
Erin North, Preschool teacher
Kia Ora! My name is Erin. I have been working in Early Childhood since 2007. I thoroughly enjoy working with children and following their journeys as they grow and develop in their early years. I am most passionate about teaching four year olds and guiding them as they get ready for their school years. I really love our Reggio Emilia inspired centre, as it encourages children to be responsible for their own learning and to develop a sense of pride and accomplishment. In my spare time I like to spend time with my family and friends, my partner and his young family. I also enjoy riding horses and spending time outdoors!
Claire Fisher, Team leader - Preschool
Kia Ora, My name is Claire and I am the head teacher in the Preschool. I have a Diploma in Teaching Early Childhood Education this past year I have been working toward my Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (ECE) upgrade that I have now completed. I strongly value building trusting relationships with all our wonderful tamariki, their whanau and my amazing teaching team. I am dedicated and focused on continuing to build my professional practise and to encourage exploration and build self-confidence in the tamariki to empower them to reach their individual potential. I am fortunate to lead such a wonderful team of supportive, passionate and friendly teachers who all dedicated to educating our tamariki in a safe, loving and inspiring environment. At home, I have a wee daughter Briar who comes to the preschool with me, she just adores her time in the preschool.
Nina Hope, Preschool teacher
My name is Nina. I am a Mum of two teenage boys. I love working here each day, learning alongside such passionate and caring teachers, who are all working towards supporting, encouraging and caring for our young tamariki and establishing strong relationships with their whanau.
Tash, Senior teacher - Preschool
I've been working in ECE for the past seven years with most of my experience being with infants and toddlers.
I gained my provisional registration early 2018 and have been working with 2 - 5 year olds since.
I am passionate about our environment and sustainable practices. I believe children should be at the heart of all that we do and in partnership with Whanau as teaching professionals we are able to achieve this.
Steve Biggins, Preschool teacher
My journey to becoming an ECE teacher started 6.5 years ago after becoming a father for the first time. I started out as an untrained teacher and quickly was encouraged to study and become a qualified teacher.
Before this, I worked in the art world, as an artist, a glassblower, painter, sculptor and graphic designer. I worked for the Whangarei Art Museum, and at North Tec in the Art Department where I gained my first degree.
I have recently relocated from Whangarei with my family, wife Marley, and our two sons Tyler and Theo.
Jill Waterman, Teacher in Training – Nursery
I have a very strong belief that all children should grow up loved, protected, happy and reach their potential. I started my studies last year so I could be a part of making this happen.
I am studying my Bachelor of Early Childhood Education with the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand. My family and I have just moved from the West Coast in January. We now live at Leithfield Beach. I am loving the East Coast!
The beach is my happy place. I love fishing, plants, biking and creating and building anything around my home and garden. There are quite a few creations that come off the beach between me and my nieces! My family and I spend a lot of time at motocross for my son, camping and helping the younger riders.