I gained my Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood Education) from the University of Canterbury, then started teaching at The Rabbit Patch Preschool Greers Road in January 2000. I started as an Over Twos teacher, then became Head Teacher, and eventually became Centre Manager.
I attended my first International Study Group tour to Reggio Emilia, Italy in 2010 with Patricia, Centre Manager of Saffron Street Rabbit Patch. What an amazing experience this was! It was so inspiring to see for myself this incredible approach to early childhood education in action.
In 2012 I travelled alongside Suz, Centre Manager of Memorial Avenue Rabbit Patch, to a two week in-depth Summer School in Reggio Emilia. One of the highlights of this experience was the opportunity to spend time in an Infant and Toddler Centre and observe the incredible interactions between the children and their teachers first hand.
In 2014 Patricia and I ventured to California, USA to spend a week working within one of the many highly respected and innovative network of like-minded preschools, SGM Atelier. We also visited several other preschools and were able to gain insight into how these preschools have interpreted the Reggio Emilia Approach within their own contexts.
I was lucky enough to return to Reggio with Patricia, in 2016 to attend a study tour specifically designed for educators from New Zealand, and then on to California to network further with some innovative preschools in Santa Barbara and Santa Monica.
It has been my privilege to return home from these learning opportunities to pass on my knowledge gained and to inspire our wonderful teachers.
My own daughter attended Greers Road Rabbit Patch until starting primary school recently which gave me another insight into the remarkable benefits our children receive by being enveloped in this beautiful view of education that places our treasured children, and all their capabilities, at the centre of the picture.