The Preschool

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Has been run from our long standing bungalow home for over 35 years. It is located at 31 Buller Street and is licensed for 28 children from 2-6 years old. Whānau are welcome to pop in any time and we often have our “alumni” (past students) returning for a play and catchup – sometimes many years later!!

Teaching and learning focuses on caring for ourselves, each other and the environment. We work on helping to create happy, empathetic, confident and competent young people that are ready to reach out to the wider world with their skills and make a difference to their surroundings. We do this through engaging with the environment and our wider community, and following interests with a passion. This means that on any given week we can be out and about in the community either on foot or in our van; baking, reading, gardening, creating or risk taking in our amazing outdoor space complete with an ancient pohutukawa tree – our “Koro” – who supports us by letting us learn how to climb, swing and look after him and the creatures that live within him. We offer real life experiences so that children learn about how the world around them works – and what does not work – which in turn helps them with their school – and life – readiness.

Both of our centres promote sustainability, which includes an edible garden for providing children and the community with food, which they help to harvest. We also have a worm farm, compost bins and recycling hub that caters for up to 85% of our waste stream. None of our food goes to waste as any leftovers are offered to our whanau or given to the community. Scraps that aren’t edible are given to a farmlet for their animals. Our tamariki have been strong supporters over the years for many projects within the community and instrumental in keeping our local community clean and free from rubbish – delivering bin clips to neighbours to stop rubbish falling out of their wheelie bins, taking rubbish bags with us whenever we go for an outing, and helping collect the many waste streams in our recycling hub and dropping them off to be produced into other items. We strive to introduce our tamariki to as many experiences that we can, in a supportive and considered environment that is full of discussion and conversation to support their emotional and social learning. In this way they can learn to be passionate and show advocacy to something they enjoy and take an interest in, enabling them to become – over time – strong leaders of resilience, change and the ability to keep up with the fast paced world we live in.

Again, children are welcome to stay until they are developmentally ready for school, and we support these older children through leadership roles and all of the tools they need to make a smooth transition onto their chosen school. Children and whanau leave us with amazing memories, a great start in life, and the promise to come back and visit!!

School Readiness

At Kinderen Preschool we know that a child’s journey towards school can be one that varies from individual to individual.

Each child has their own unique understanding on what school is about and how it may look for them. For some it can seem quite scary, leaving the surrounds of our small, homely setting, to one that could be much larger and very different. For others it can be a big adventure and the countdown to school full of excitement and wonder. It is important to be guided by your own individual child. Some may be ready to start school as soon as they turn 5. Others may be reluctant and need a bit more time to prepare for their school journey. As kaiako, we are here to help each whānau and individual child on this transitioning journey. We understand that the emotional journey can be a confusing time for our tamariki. To help support them we focus on strengthening their self-regulation. We guide the child to identify what the emotion feels like, what it may look like, and how we may respond when we are feeling it. This helps them to understand that we can feel excited about something new – school – but also be apprehensive and nervous. We reiterate that it is okay to feel these emotions and how we can verbalise this as feelings. Through play we guide our tamariki to develop and strengthen their social, communication, environmental, and leadership skills. This embraces our belief that children learn valuable skills through their play especially when the learning is self-driven and based around their interests. The incredible skills needed to negotiate play with others, using the available resources and environment, helps guide our tamariki in learning how to learn.

At Kinderen Preschool we offer our tamariki opportunities to explore what school may be like through our everyday experiences.
We encourage tamariki to:

unpack and pack their bags independently;

dress themselves and become confident with zippers, buttons and shoe laces;

put away their own belongings so they know where they are;

put things away once they are finished being used.

make their own sandwiches and prepare their lunch box, on specific days, when they turn four;

identify their own name and write it on their piece of work;

handle books respectfully

communicate their own ideas and thoughts around play

As Kaiako and parents we strengthen their school learning by

reading to them every day – encouraging them to develop an understanding that a book carries a message and that written text and pictures help to convey this message;

offer experiences to strengthen alphabet knowledge, the sound each letter makes, and how it looks in lower case;

helping them practice holding a pencil correctly;

looking for numeracy and mathematical opportunities throughout the day in everyday play and interactions for example – counting items, identifying numbers, ordering items, naming colours, naming shapes, measuring, shopping, board games, puzzles.

Our tamariki absorb knowledge through their daily interactions and by seeing what is happening around them.
They hold their own learning in their hearts.


Kinderen offers trip to the Forest and other smaller trips into our community as part of the curriculum. The learning outcomes children experience continue to exceed our expectations. Children who do not attend Kinderen on trip days are welcome to come along in the company of their parent/whānau and join in the
fun and learning.

Learning about our local community

As we have such a high teacher to child ratio, we often take trips either in the van, on foot or at the little centre in the buggies, out into our local community. We believe it is important to learn about the world around us, and this means we can extend on interests in a meaningful way.

We explore places such as;

The pet shop


Chalmers Retirement Home

Mount Bryan Reserve on Octavius Place

Coastal Walkway

Te Henui Walkway (there’s a river, with ducks!)

Fitzroy park/skatepark

Centre city ie shopping centre and surrounding shops

Puke Ariki

As we have such a high teacher to child ratio, we often take trips either in the van, on foot or at the little centre in the buggies, out into our local community. We believe it is important to learn about the world around us, and this means we can extend on interests in a meaningful way.