The Kaitiaki Philosophy

In the Kaitiaki rūma we are inspired by the philosophy of Magda Gerber’s Philosophy (RIE) and the principles of respect, freedom of movement, and trust in our infants and toddlers ability to be an initiator, explorer and self learner.

In order to cultivate quality care, RIE encourages;

  • An environment for the child that is physically safe, cognitively challenging and emotionally nurturing.

  • Time for uninterrupted play.

  • Freedom to explore and interact with other infants.

  • Involvement of the child in all care activities to allow the child to become an active participant rather than a passive recipient.

  • Sensitive observation of the child in order to understand the child’s needs.

  • Consistency, clearly defined limits and expectations to develop self-discipline.

In the Kaitiaki room we believe our tamariki (children) are innately capable of discovering their own bodies and what they can do. We allow our tamariki free movement as they learn to move and control their own bodies. For infants this is them learning to roll, sit, crawl and walk at their own unhurried pace. For our toddlers, this is allowing them to learn and walk, run and jump unassisted as they learn to judge for themselves what they can and cannot yet do.

We have a key teacher for each child who builds a meaningful relationship with the child and their whānau (family), building a link to home and supporting pēpi and tamariki to develop secure attachments. The key teachers help individual children settle in and do their key care routines until they have a sense of belonging with other kaiako (teachers). We ensure unhurried and calm routines where tamariki are actively involved in their own learning.

Our role as kaiako is to support the tamariki in their play through observing and responding to the cues of the children, supporting them to communicate their needs both verbally and non verbally. We encourage our tamariki to develop the skills needed to emotionally regulate themselves, guiding and supporting them as they work through their emotions.