Even the smallest of birds, the rearea, can make it to the highest branch of the kahikatea

Join us at Waikato University for a fabulous weekend-long celebration of all things ECE!  There is a huge selection of workshops, great keynotes speakers, networking opportunites, plus the chance to experience either the Kingitanga Trail or visit select settings in the Hamilton area.



Ngā Tapuwae - The Pedagogy of Reggio Emilia Through a Māori Lens

Brenda Soutar (Mana Tamariki) and Te Hemara Rauhihi (investigative reporter and director for TVNZ)

This presentation considers the pedagogy of Reggio Emilia within a Māori cultural context and makes historical connections to the inspirational story of the C Company, 28 Māori Battalion. Ngā tapuwae - Footprints, reflects on the journeys of those gone before and how their journeys impact the present. We are leaving our own footprints everyday, markers that will indicate to future generations the hopes and aspirations we have for them.

You can find out more about Brenda and Te Hemara here.



Connecting with People, Places and Things Through our Te Whāriki Curriculum.

Vanessa Paki (Faculty of Education, University of Waikato)

This presentation explores the four principles of Whakamana (empowerment), Kotahitanga (holistic development), Whānau Tangata (family and community), and Ngā Hononga (relationships) embedded in Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum (Ministry of Education, 1996).  Fundamental to Te Whāriki is the interaction of how each principle forms the foundations to weaving a curriculum that is created by the people - for the people. 

Vanessa has a particular interest in the relationship between philosophy and theory where she will discuss how these four principles continue to reveal important understandings for teaching and learning.  Exploring both a Māori and critical perspective this presentation will then discuss and reflect on the implications of these principles for weaving effective and inclusive practices around language, culture and identity.

You can find out more about Vanessa here.


Savouring the Moment: Living Te Whāriki

Wendy Lee (Director, Educational Leadership Project, Ltd)

As Carl Honore states, these days our culture teaches us that faster is better. The ‘slow movement’ is not about doing everything at a snails pace; it challenges us to question the view that fast is better!  To savour the time we have with children rather than to race through a programme, to enable children to explore, investigate, create, question so we can support them to learn how to learn and to develop a love of learning.  These notions are deeply embedded in Te Whāriki, a vision that shapes aspirations for children – that of their being “competent and confident learners and communicators, healthy in mind, body and spirit, secure in their sense of belonging and in the knowledge that they make a valued contribution to society” (Te Whāriki, p. 9).  As adults in ECE settings to engage with issues considering is ‘our mind full or mindful’? Guy Claxton challenges us to consider a different vision of the mind ‘in which ambiguity, paradox and the tinkering towards the truth that characterises the child’s mind are the path to wisdom’.  To consider what we might do to value our intuition, to improve our working lives, to make them more rewarding and productive so that we have a richer and fuller life.

You can find out more about Wendy here.