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Our Wonderful Teaching Team

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Left to Right: Claire McDonald, Lyn Morton, Stacey Symister, Abby Johnson
Claire McDonald
Lyn Morton
Abby Johnson
Stacey Symister
Full time Teacher
Assistant Head Teacher
Senior Teacher
Full time Teacher
Graduate Diploma of Teaching
in Early Childhood Education

Claire has been teaching at our Kindergarten for 14 years now and stepped into the Senior Teacher role in 2019.  She has a Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Education.  Claire loves exploring out in the community with the children, especially in the bush or other natural spaces.  Literacy learning is another of Claire’s passions and she spends many hours reading and talking with the children in both English and te reo Māori.  Community and collaboration are key words for Claire.  She believes in working closely with families so that children are empowered to learn and follow their passions.
Bachelor of Education

Lyn believes that children learn through fun and play, and Lyn’s approach to teaching is always fun.  She loves being involved with the children’s dramatic play and working with them to explore their ideas about the world through imagination.  Lyn has a Bachelor of Education (Teaching) and has been at Andersons Bay Community Kindergarten for more than 20 years as both a teacher and Head Teacher.  Her knowledge provides steadiness and strength in the teaching team.  As children play and have fun, Lyn supports them learning through and about relationships so that they can build the social knowledge, skills and attitudes to work with others and be good friends.
Bachelor of Teaching
in Early Childhood Education
Abby brings boundless energy and enthusiasm into our Kindergarten.  She has been part of the teaching team since 2018, firstly as a student when she was studying for her Bachelor of Teaching in Early Childhood Education from the University of Otago College of Education and then as a fully qualified teacher.  Abby loves working with children on projects such as cooking, carpentry and hut building where children are learning in authentic contexts.   In Abby’s eyes, all children are capable and confident learners and it is the teacher’s role to strengthen and enhance their mana or their power of being.
Bachelor of Teaching in Early Childhood Education

Stacey joined our teaching team in 2021 and took up a permanent position at the start of 2023.  She has a Bachelor of Teaching in Early Childhood Education from Te Rito Maioha.  Stacey is one of the practical members of our team.  She enjoys making and fixing things with the children and always has common sense advice and a joke or two at hand.  Stacey has a strength in working with children who have additional needs and she is always looking to extend her knowledge in this area for example learning New Zealand sign language or diving deeper into the theory of social and emotional regulation.  The concept of ā tōnā wā - at the right time that is embedded in the early childhood curriculum is very important to Stacey.  She believes that all children learn best when they have strong relationships, quality environments and, crucially, the time to play and explore at their own pace.
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