Nature Kids Motueka

Education institution number:
46202
Service type:
Education and Care Service
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
32
Telephone:
Address:

12 Queen Street, Motueka

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1 ERO’s Judgements

Akarangi | Quality Evaluation evaluates the extent to which this early childhood service has the learning and organisational conditions to support equitable and excellent outcomes for all learners. Te Ara Poutama- indicators of quality for early childhood education: what matters most (PDF 3.01MB) are the basis for making judgements about the effectiveness of the service in achieving equity and excellence for all learners. The Akarangi Quality Evaluation Judgement Rubric (PDF 91.30KB) derived from the indicators, is used to inform the ERO’s judgements about this service’s performance in promoting equity and excellence.

ERO’s judgements for Nature Kids Motueka are as follows:

Outcome Indicators

ERO’s judgement

What the service knows about outcomes for learners

Whakaū Embedding

Ngā Akatoro Domains

ERO’s judgement

He Whāriki Motuhake

The learner and their learning

Whakaū Embedding

Whakangungu Ngaio

Collaborative professional learning builds knowledge and capability

Whakaū Embedding

Ngā Aronga Whai Hua

Evaluation for improvement

Whāngai Establishing

Kaihautū

Leaders foster collaboration and improvement

Whakaū Embedding

Te Whakaruruhau

Stewardship through effective governance and management

Whāngai Establishing

2 Context of the Service

Nature Kids Motueka is a small family-owned and operated early childhood service for children from two to six years of age. The service is located in a rural setting close to the local marae and follows a nature-based philosophy. Sustainable practice is at the core of the curriculum.

3 Summary of findings

Tamariki and their whānau experience a rich, inclusive, and respectful curriculum that fosters a strong sense of wellbeing and belonging. Kaiako know each child well and are highly responsive to their cultural histories. They engage effectively with whānau and external agencies to support equitable learning opportunities.  

Whānau Māori successfully contribute to designing a curriculum that reflects Māori ways of knowing, being, and doing. Te reo me ngā tikanga Māori are embedded in the service’s curriculum. Tamariki have regular authentic opportunities to hear, speak and use te reo me ngā tikanga Māori in meaningful learning situations. Effective leadership and an association with the local marae, supports Kaiako to build their te ao Māori capability and capacity.

Kaiako effectively integrate a nature-based philosophy and the principles and strands from Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum across the service curriculum. They are beginning to examine the learning outcomes in Te Whāriki in relation to their context and to be able to show significant learning for tamariki and their progress overtime in assessment.  Local interpretation of these outcomes by kaiako, whānau and the local community is a work in progress.

Tamariki have many opportunities to actively explore their interests at an unhurried pace and make decisions to support their developing confidence as competent learners. The spacious learning environment is thoughtfully designed to foster curiosity and risk-taking. The curriculum and resources encourage children to think, question and problem solve. Regular excursions into the community allow tamariki to build their knowledge of the wider world and learn about sustainability practices.

Leaders and kaiako facilitate a shared understanding of the service’s philosophy, vision, goals, and priorities for children’s learning with parents and whānau. Trusting relationships support collaboration, and openness to change and continuous improvement. Leaders and kaiako participate in a range of professional learning opportunities and actively engage in critical reflection and problem solving to promote positive outcomes for children.

Further work is required to understand internal evaluation for ongoing improvement to aspects of the curriculum. A stronger focus on monitoring and evaluating the health and safety procedures is required to improve the effectiveness of systems.

4 Improvement actions

Nature Kids Motueka will include the following actions in its Quality Improvement Planning:

  • strengthen and embed kaiako understanding and use of the learning outcomes from Te Whāriki to analyse and interpret significant learning moments for tamariki to show their learning progress over time
  • further develop understanding and implementation of effective internal evaluation processes to continue to improve the curriculum and outcomes for children.

5 Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Nature Kids Motueka completed an ERO Centre Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they have taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

  • curriculum
  • premises and facilities
  • health and safety practices
  • governance, management, and administration.

During the review, ERO looked at the service’s systems for managing the following areas that have a potentially high impact on children's wellbeing:

  • emotional safety (including positive guidance and child protection)
  • physical safety (including supervision; sleep procedures; accidents; medication; hygiene; excursion policies and procedures)
  • suitable staffing (including qualification levels; police vetting; teacher registration; ratios)
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

All early childhood services are required to promote children's health and safety and to regularly review their compliance with legal requirements.

Dr Lesley Patterson
Director Review and Improvement Services (Southern)
Southern Region | Te Tai Tini

4 October 2021 

6 About the Early Childhood Service

Early Childhood Service Name

Nature Kids Motueka

Profile Number

46202

Location

Motueka

Service type

Education and care service

Number licensed for

29 children aged over 2 years.

Percentage of qualified teachers

100%

Service roll

38

Ethnic composition

Māori 9, NZ European/Pākehā 27, Other 2.

Review team on site

June 2021

Date of this report

4 October 2021

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review, June 2016

1 Evaluation of Nature Kids Motueka

How well placed is Nature Kids Motueka to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.

Background

Nature Kids Motueka is a family-owned early childhood service for children from two to six years of age. A number of family members work at the centre, including the head teacher and business manager.

The service operates from an extensively refurbished property. The centre environment is spacious and located in a rural setting close to the local marae. Links to nature and connections with the land are strong components of the centre's philosophy and programme.

The roll has steadily grown since the centre opened. The roll reflects the diversity of cultures in the community.

The centre is at the early stages of establishing and implementing some practices. This is the first ERO review since the centre was licensed in June 2014.

The Review Findings

Strong respectful relationships are evident between teachers, children and their families. Children are cared for and learn in a welcoming, inclusive, family-like environment. Their learning and wellbeing needs are well known by staff. All teachers know about and contribute to planning for each child’s learning.

Teachers provide calm, uninterrupted learning opportunities to support children's growing independence and confidence. They ably foster peaceful social interactions amongst children, showing creativity in the way they respond to meeting children's developing skills. Routines are flexible, enabling children to make choices and build their decision-making ability.

Two significant features that benefit children and are strongly evident in the centre's philosophy and programme are the:

many opportunities children have to actively interact with nature, learn about and practise environmental sustainability and develop an appreciation for the living world

integrated way in which Māori values and concepts are used to inform planning and assessment, enrich children's learning and develop an appreciation for New Zealand's unique bicultural heritage.

Children have plenty of room to be physically active, challenge themselves and explore in the extensive outdoor area. Teachers encourage children to problem solve, think critically and engage in creative, imaginative play. Aspects of scientific thinking are woven into children's learning.

The centre manager and teachers are improvement focused. Centre leadership values professional learning and development and promotes a culture of collaboration. Teachers are supported to be reflective. There is a shared approach to decision making.

Teachers are growing in their understanding and use of internal evaluation and how this can benefit children's learning. There are good links between the centre's strategic plan and self-review priorities.

Teachers provide useful information for parents to show how the programme is supporting children to develop skills, attitudes and knowledge in preparation for school.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders and ERO agree that the next key steps for improving outcomes for children are to:

  • review planning and assessment practices, including specific plans for children with high learning and wellbeing needs

  • strengthen the appraisal system to provide useful feedback to teachers on their practice

  • increase the timeliness and evaluative content of internal evaluations

  • further unpack the centre's philosophy to provide better guidelines for teaching and learning.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Nature Kids Motueka completed an ERO Centre Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they have taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

  • curriculum
  • premises and facilities
  • health and safety practices
  • governance, management and administration.

During the review, ERO looked at the service’s systems for managing the following areas that have a potentially high impact on children's wellbeing:

  • emotional safety (including positive guidance and child protection)

  • physical safety (including supervision; sleep procedures; accidents; medication; hygiene; excursion policies and procedures)

  • suitable staffing (including qualification levels; police vetting; teacher registration; ratios)

  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

All early childhood services are required to promote children's health and safety and to regularly review their compliance with legal requirements.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Nature Kids Motueka will be in three years.

Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern

17 June 2016

The Purpose of ERO Reports

The Education Review Office (ERO) is the government department that, as part of its work, reviews early childhood services throughout Aotearoa New Zealand. ERO’s reports provide information for parents and communities about each service’s strengths and next steps for development. ERO’s bicultural evaluation framework Ngā Pou Here is described in SECTION 3 of this report. Early childhood services are partners in the review process and are expected to make use of the review findings to enhance children's wellbeing and learning.

2 Information about the Early Childhood Service

Location

Motueka

Ministry of Education profile number

46202

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

29 children over two years of age

Service roll

46

Gender composition

Boys: 27

Girls: 19

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Pasifika

Other

16

24

1

5

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%+

Based on funding rates

80% +

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:6

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2016

Date of this report

17 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

First ERO Review

3 General Information about Early Childhood Reviews

ERO’s Evaluation Framework

ERO’s overarching question for an early childhood education review is ‘How well placed is this service to promote positive learning outcomes for children?’ ERO focuses on the following factors as described in the bicultural framework Ngā Pou Here:

Pou Whakahaere – how the service determines its vision, philosophy and direction to ensure positive outcomes for children

Pou Ārahi – how leadership is enacted to enhance positive outcomes for children

Mātauranga – whose knowledge is valued and how the curriculum is designed to achieve positive outcomes for children

Tikanga whakaako – how approaches to teaching and learning respond to diversity and support positive outcomes for children.

Within these areas ERO considers the effectiveness of arotake – self review and of whanaungatanga – partnerships with parents and whānau.

ERO evaluates how well placed a service is to sustain good practice and make ongoing improvements for the benefit of all children at the service.

A focus for the government is that all children, especially priority learners, have an opportunity to benefit from quality early childhood education. ERO will report on how well each service promotes positive outcomes for all children, with a focus on children who are Māori, Pacific, have diverse needs, and are up to the age of two.

For more information about the framework and Ngā Pou Here refer to ERO’s Approach to Review in Early Childhood Services.

ERO’s Overall Judgement and Next Review

The overall judgement that ERO makes and the timing of the next review will depend on how well placed a service is to promote positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed – The next ERO review in four years
  • Well placed – The next ERO review in three years
  • Requires further development – The next ERO review within two years
  • Not well placed - The next ERO review in consultation with the Ministry of Education

ERO has developed criteria for each category. These are available on ERO’s website.

Review Coverage

ERO reviews are tailored to each service’s context and performance, within the overarching review framework. The aim is to provide information on aspects that are central to positive outcomes for children and useful to the service.