Acting Team Leader Juniors Room
My name is Jess McKenzie and I am the acting Team Leader in the Juniors room. My partner and I have just moved back to Wellington after working down in Nelson for a year and are looking forward to getting back into the swing of life in the capital!
After working in retail for a few years upon leaving college, I began my teaching career in 2011 working as a support teacher at a centre in Wellington CBD and loved it so much that I decided to do a Bachelor of Early Childhood Education. I trained through Te Tari Puna Ora o Aotearoa (which has now become Te Rito Maioha) while working four days a week in a centre. Through my training I developed a love of te reo Maori and this has continued to be a passion of mine, and is one that I try to instill in the tamariki I work alongside. I have taught children in both infant and toddlers, and junior age groups, but most recently I led the Infant and Toddler teams at Active Explorers in Richmond. Returning to teach the older children is something that I am looking forward to.
I am fascinated by children and the unique way that they see the world and whole heartedly believe that with a nurturing base and the experience of Early Childhood education children can learn the skills they need to be confident and competent learners throughout their lives.
Personally I believe that family is the most important thing and I work hard to build respectful, responsive relationships with children and their families, as I know that this has a huge impact on being able to fulfil parental aspirations and gain the knowledge needed to support children's holistic development.
In my spare time I am an avid reader, enjoy painting, music, going on bush walks and spending time with my family, friends, partner and our cat Gary :)
I look forward to getting to know all of you and being a part of your child's learning journey.
Team Leader Infants Room
Kia Ora! My name is Kimberley and I’m the Team Leader of the Infants Room. I was born and raised in South Auckland and am the youngest of five children in our whanau. I moved to Wellington a few years ago with my husband and children. I have a school-aged son and a daughter who currently attends Active Explorers Kaiwharawhara with me, so I have an interest in education and learning as a parent and educator. I’ve had the pleasure of teaching here at Active Explorers Kaiwharawhara since 2015, initially as a teacher and then as a Team Leader. I am a registered teacher with a Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Education, and Bachelor of Arts in Education and Japanese.
I am passionate about the importance of early education, especially quality education for infants. I love working with our Infants Teaching Team, children and families, seeing children develop naturally, guided by our RIE and Pikler-inspired philosophy. I strongly believe in allowing children to develop at their own pace and respecting them as competent and capable individuals. In my free time, I love playing board games with my children, creative writing, visiting my family in Auckland and Hamilton, reading novels and bush walking.