Tell us a bit about yourself:

Hi! My name is Tess. Before starting at Bear Park my background was in hospitality, but with the encouragement from management I completed a Bachelor Degree in Early Childcare and am now the Head Teacher of the preschool at Bear Park, Patey Street.

What do you enjoy most about working at Bear Park?

I love having the opportunity to work with like-minded Kaiako (teachers) who can all share their knowledge and experience with one another.

How has Bear Park helped you to grow professionally and develop your skills in ECE?

Not only has their support allowed me to complete my Bachelor Degree in Early Childcare, but through their amazing mentoring I have been able to further develop and grow as a teacher.

What do you think makes Bear Park stand out from other centres?

Bear Park takes the time to really think about the environments it creates for the children, Kaiako and whanau – they are beautiful, challenging and thought provoking.

Can you tell us about how Bear Park’s philosophy resonates with you?

Being able to connect with the outdoors is a huge part of my teaching philosophy. I believe giving Tamariki the time, space and tools to create their own relationship and connection with Papatūānuku is an essential part of early education. Bear Park shares this belief and it can be seen throughout many elements of the daily program.

How have you seen the children at Bear Park benefit from the learning environment?

The children are empowered to follow their interests which are reflected in the environments.

What have been some of your most memorable experiences at Bear Park?

Being part of many meaningful and valuable PD sessions alongside Bear Park colleagues, and I’m continuously being inspired by those around me to enrich my practice and evolve as a Kaiako.

What do you find most rewarding about working at Bear Park?

Seeing the children leave the centre as confident and capable people who are ready to take the next step on their learning journey.

If you could describe Bear Park in one word what would it be?

Inspiring

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