Rangitaki | Blogs

Being a part of this internal evaluation professional development and journey has enabled Kaiako to see the differences between self-review and internal evaluation. For us to reflect on the learner – the tamariki we teach and support every day. As a team we decided to use our current self-review on “How are Pasifikia Cultures reflected within the environment?” as our Internal Evaluation question. However after reflecting on the questions and thoughts highlighted in the power points and meetings with Erana Hawera, we realised we needed to think of other cultures that are represented within our centre. Hence it became “How are we supporting the different cultures that are represented in our centre?” We then noticed we felt more comfortable and it was more balanced to gather data. During ERO’s visit Rod Webster reviewed our internal evaluation mahi and encouraged us to ponder on our Internal Evaluation question by asking ourselves “to find the value, merit worth.. what we are doing/have done for children”. This whakaaro helped us to be able to define what we were really looking at – “How effectively is this service’s curriculum designed to promote positive learning outcomes for all children?”
Kaiako have worked collaboratively supporting one another through this journey by gathering data of what we know. We began to practice waiata, share pukapuka from different cultures. The biggest challenge we faced was been able to understanding the languages, meanings, pronunciations and finding out correct information about resources we introduced. As we value and were focused on creating an authentic environment to promote positive learning outcomes for all tamariki by reflecting their cultures, so we needed to find a solution. As a team we attended a Pasifika workshop with Ubby Williams-Fonohema, which gave us a deeper insight into our approaches, thoughts, actions and how we put these into practices when engaging with our Pasifika whanau. We feel we are now becoming more comfortable to korero with whanau about their culture, resources etc to work together in a reciprocal relationship to support their tamaiti – for their child to know their culture is recognised and valued within our centre.
The webinars have been a very helpful tool for the team to understand the key changes to Te Whariki and gain a deeper understanding of how the changes affect our documentation/practice and the learning outcomes for tamariki. “To see Te Whariki in a new way” as “It is our responsibility as Kaiako to look deeper and widen your own views”. For us to “challenge our thinking and practice – to challenge your thinking make the Familiar Strange”. The webinars have supported our journey into Internal Evaluation by opening our eyes wider. And the whakataki “Kotahi te Kākano, he nui ngā hua o te rākau” linked to our internal evaluation journey. During the webinars, notes were taken and a folder created, so that kaiako can have access to this at any time to review what was discussed in the webinars at any stage and the links to the changes in Te Whariki.
We recognise this is an ongoing journey that the kaiako have embraced as a team and we continue to build upon our understanding of “How effectively is this service’s curriculum designed to promote positive learning outcomes for all children”. We have recently made links to another early childhood centre for us to work alongside on our journey. We acknowledge and understand the importance of making links to the wider community for us to increase our cultural knowledge and understanding for positive learning outcomes for all children. Our next step is to incorporate waiata for the Turanganui Maori cultural festival that reflect all of our cultures, as we stand on stage celebrating who we all are as the Pickering Street Kindergarten roopu.

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