Paparangi Kindergarten teachers live Treaty of Waitangi with kids
Collecting rubbish is helping Paparangi Kindergarten kids live the Treaty of Waitangi because it connects with Article 2 of the treaty, says head teacher Isabel Boyd.
Article 2 refers to protection and possession of land for Maori.
The kindergarten has been teaching through the eyes of Te Reo Maori and Te Tiriti in recent years.
“We’ve tried to make our practise reflective of the Treaty of Waitangi’s 4 articles,” Isabel says.
Other Article 2 activities include maintaining a garden and making bricks out of paper that is given to friends and family as a more environmentally friendly alternative to firewood.
“With a Te Tiriti based program you’re allowing children to be themselves but they also have an understanding of others.”
The children drive their own learning by asking the teachers to document things they do at kindergarten.
This covers Article 1 of the Treaty involving governance and self-determination.
The other two articles of the treaty are also covered in their curriculum.
Isabel says the response from parents about their children being taught under a treaty based practise has only been positive.
“Parents talk about how their children have been using Te Reo Maori at home and singing waiatas.”
The learning practise prepares the children well for school.
“When the kids go off to school they have a real strong sense of who they are and where they fit in the world, and know that they can learn.”
Paparangi has recently been recognised by its association as an effective teaching team, but Isabel still says there’s work to be done.
“We’ve still got lots of learning and growing and ways of moving forward and challenging ourselves.”
Isabel says more could be done by other early childhood centres to implement Te Reo Maori in their teaching.
“All of the teaching sector has to think about their teaching through Te Reo Maori lens.”