At Active Explorers we encourage children to become lifelong learners by developing intellectual curiosity and a thirst for discovery and achievement. We strive to create a diverse community that fosters mutual respect and social responsibility, enhanced by a strong partnership between home and the Centre.
We bring these three areas together within our unique curriculum, which we developed based on the NZ Early Childhood curriculum. There are five guiding values to our curriculum:
RESPECT – develop a positive feeling of esteem
BELONGING – creating connections and being part of a group
EMPOWERMENT – celebrating every child’s achievements
RESILIENCE – encouraging and developing the confidence to keep trying
ENJOYMENT – ensuring life is fun
Our centre is situated on the Ellerslie/ Mount Wellington border within a mixed residential and commercial zone and neighbouring the Edmund Hillary Retirement Village. Opened in 2009, we pride ourselves on creating a beautifully presented, warm and inviting space for families to feel welcome and that children will want to explore.
Our nursery follows a Pikler-based approach, with primary caregiving and observation of children’s cues for daily routines. Our toddler and preschool areas, though influenced by the Reggio Emilia approach continues on the Pikler principles of respectful interactions, cues to predictable routines and opportunities for uninterrupted play. This translates into a desire that staff allow children the time and space to develop at their own natural pace, and that the teacher’s role is that of a keen observer, in-tune with ‘their’ child, able to ‘read’ when they need assistance.
We see children as capable individuals and we have designed an environment that supports their ability to achieve the goals they set for themselves. Developing a strong secure base from which to explore is key to the success of our centre, with some teachers transitioning through to older classrooms, along with the children.
We are a culturally diverse centre, with teachers and families literally from opposite sides of the globe, Zimbabwe and Argentina, Australasia and Asia and places in between. We celebrate our differences and go the extra mile to ensure our families are part of our centre and that our parents feel that they also belong here, with mother’s, father’s and grandparent’s events and centre wide picnics. Our children take an active role in our wider community, coming together in support of others in need and also through excursions to the local library and the Retirement Village.
As a teacher-led environment we believe in the importance of supporting a qualified and registered profession, with over 80% of our staff either fully qualified or in the process of working towards a recognised early childhood qualification. As a result we attract quality staff, who are passionate about what they do, and who also see themselves as lifelong learners.
We believe that what makes our centre special is a simple equation, a beautiful space+ engaged families+ great teachers + passion + belief that what we do makes a difference.