Friday, December 19, 2008

Final Party 2008

Christmas 2008 - the plans had to change due to rotten weather on our booked beach and helicopter party Sunday. This did not deter us and TODAY the weather pulled out all the stops for our magnificent end of year party together at Kindergarten. There was brilliant sunshine, WATER, a sprinkler, and a waterslide, there were sausages, bread and cake. There were parents, friends and siblings. Sweets, presents (for the Kindergarten) and SANTA! It was hard to go home. What an amazing year it has been. Thank you to all the families who have joined in the community of learners, participated, contributed, and gone the extra mile. Have an awesome Christmas, and exuberant and safe holiday.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Active Movement Accreditation - SILVER status

The super fit and healthy children, teachers and families at Manaia Kindergarten have been recognised for their efforts and today were awarded the SILVER active movement accreditation! Jaimee Claxton and Halle Barrett from Sport Northland have been working alongside our team for the past year or so on developing our policies and providing professional development for Teachers and information evenings and workshops for parents. Tania and Beverly were totally inspired by a two day fundamental movement skills workshop they attended last year and since then we have been even more focused on providing our Kindergarten children with a broad range of active movement. Children at Manaia were able to articulate to Jaimee today all of the ways they were active at Kindergarten and at home, we were VERY PROUD of their ideas and responses. They also knew our next goal - working towards GOLD! So, bring it on... 2009 the year Manaia Kindergarten achieve our gold accreditation. Thanks to Jaimee and Halle for their guidance and support.

Look at our Garden Grow!

Our tomatoes are growing bigger each day...

We have already reaped the benefits of our peas and enjoyed eating them straight from the pod at Kindergarten. There are a few left growing fatter...

Our flowers add great colour to our garden!

Our broccoli is slowing starting to grow..
We have taken great care of our garden and it has grown before our eyes! We have remembered to water it everyday and check how our plants are going. Our lettuce and spinach is also ready to eat and we look forward to enjoying it on Friday at our end of term party! I wonder if Santa will like lettuce? I bet his reindeer will...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Flax Weaving together

A month ago I shared with the children my taonga, my flax kete, woven during a weekend workshop with Jo Samuel. The children were fascinated and began to make plans. They wanted to make flax bows - and were eager to teach me this skill.

Unfortunately it was raining - and flax can not be cut in the rain. This is Maori protocol. Cutting flax in the rain can damage the flax bush over time. So we waited for a time that was best for ourselves and the flax.

Today, with sunshine and enthusiasm - a group of us gathered around the flax. The small group saw the structure of the harakeke bush and were shown how its cut. The outer leaves of the flax fan are the ones we cut. The inner leaves are the pepe (baby) - cutting them cuts the life out of the flax bush.

We saw many examples of unhealthy leaves on our flax - an indication that not enough air is getting through the bushes (another working bee?)

Back inside the kindergarten our group grew and the children saw and experienced the grain of the fiber on the flax. We learnt and took turns splitting the leaves and preparing them for weaving. Olivia demonstrated flax bows. Then I demonstrated the weaving of the flax and creation of a putiputi (flower). Everyone was keen to get hands on experience.

Unfortunately we did not have enough time, healthy flax, or supporting adults today for the large and interested group of weavers. If you have knowledge and skills in this area - we would love your help and support.

Watch the slide show and marvel at the children's newly acquired skills.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Jumping for Distance

It all started with a group of children playing with the hoops... we decided to see how far we could jump between two hoops and when we succeeded we made the distance wider. More children joined in and we set up the hoops in a long row so we could practice our jumping for distance. We have to concentrate really hard to get our timing and rhythm right and to coordinate the movement of our arms and legs. This is all good practice for games we will learn later on, like hopscotch, jump rope and elastics. We will also use these skills when we do events such as long jump and triple jump. Tania and Beverly talked to us about landing safely, bending our ankles, knees and hips. We learnt to focus our eyes straight ahead, bend our knees, put our arms behind our backs and then to swing our arms forward and up as we jumped. We practised keeping both our feet together as we jumped and landing on both feet at the same time. There is so much to remember and learn when jumping - we will keep practising next week.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Disappearing Legs!

It all began with a big hole in the sand..... somebody sat in it and next minute they were covered up! No legs Noah we called him! Then everyone wanted a turn at the amazing disappearing legs trick! This called for major team work as we dug holes and had turns to bury each other. What a lot of fun we had - I wonder how many no legs children we could get at Kindergarten all at once! It would be a very full sandpit. I think we'd need a lot of helpers.

The Giant Swing

The swings were very popular today and there didn't seem to be enough swings for everyone who wanted a turn. I asked you if you remembered the giant swing we made along time ago. A few of you remembered, we headed off to the shed to find a long plank to put between our two blue swings. We had to make sure it was safe first and then we all climbed on! WOW so many people at once sure made the swing heavy to push. We had turns at pushing and sitting on the swing and others crowded round for their turn on the giant swing too. You held hands or held on to the plank so that you didn't swing off! I liked the way you sang as you swang! Have you seen the movie on our Manaia blog? It took a lot of concentration to get the giant swing swinging together. You needed to have your legs in time, swinging in and out at the same time. Well done everyone, we will get the giant swing up and working another day... Great team work!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Ideas on Cars

As you may have guessed already - Cars are being explored by many of the children at Manaia Kindergarten. Today children recorded their knowledge of cars which will be saved onto their individual DVDs. Below is a snapshot of these interviews.

These interviews were conducted using our new FlipCams. We have discovered that FlipCams have good movie editing software which you can see from the movie above. Click HERE for more info on Flipcams

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Oh! How our garden grows

Click here to check out our kindergarten blog post in mid Oct about building our vegetable garden. We have planted broccoli, carrots, spring onions, lettuce, peas and much more. We have been watching and watering our vegetable plants - and the plants have been growing!! See how our garden has grown!!

The flowers are blooming and there are even tiny flowers on the vegetable plants... who knows - soon we might have a vegetable or two!!

Finley and the Monster Truck

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

ABBA at Manaia

It all started on the swings yesterday - Lucy and Milly singing as they were swinging "Super Trooper"... at the top of their voices! I know that your Mum's went to see "Mamma Mia" at the movies - it was an EXCELLENT movie. I guessed they had bought the CD or DVD and had obviously been playing it alot! You knew so many of the songs and the words and I enjoyed listening to you. Meg also came to join us and knew so many of the songs too. Today Wendy and I were thinking the same thing and both brought in our ABBA CD's for you. What a day we had singing and dancing together. I remember singing ABBA just like you when I was a little girl and I know that I learnt it from listening to my Mum's music too. WOW we sure have talent at Manaia Kindergarten.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Sand and Water Exploration

We are enjoying the sunshine and warm weather and the opportunities this provides for lots of exploring and experimenting with sand and water. We are learning math and science concepts as we play, we are developing our fine and gross motor skills and we are using all of our senses. We are working together and co-operating and engaging in lots of team work and socialisation. We are using our imaginations and are involved in dramatic play. Most importantly we are HAVING FUN!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Megs day at Adventure Forest

Yesterday, Meg took Ekko home and she went with her family and Ekko to the new Adventure Forest in Whangarei. Meg was a little disappointed that she could not quite reach the 1.5 metres up to clip herself onto the ropes - which meant that this time she had a watching role. Meg certainly enjoyed taking photos of her family on the aerial circuits. This was such an exciting time that Meg decided to share her story of her adventures through this movie.

You can find out more about the Adventure Forest in Whangarei at

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Monster Trucks at Manaia

Cars and trucks have become a real interest at Kindergarten. We have made roads for our cars and engineered all sorts of tracks and pipes that our cars can race through. We have new monster trucks at Kindergarten that have also been raced and enjoyed by all. We are extending our knowledge about cars and are trying to find out the names of the cars our family has. Today we tried out drawing monster trucks. We used a monster truck as a model and looked very carefully at all the details. Can you see the mag wheels we have drawn? Can you see the numbers we have written on the side of the cars? Can you see the steps up to the car? What amazing work at Kindergarten today!

Elliott persisting at the monkey bars..

"Tania, Tania I can do the monkey bars, I have lots of energy" you called out to me Elliott. I went to get the camera to make a movie of you in action and take some photos. You tried and tried but couldn't get right across again. You had obviously used all of your energy getting across the first time! I am impressed that you kept trying though! Keep practising Elliott and very soon you will be able to make it across everyday! I took the photos and videoed you with the camera and everytime you had finished you wanted to see what photos I had taken and look at the movie. "Let's make a movie" you said to me. That's exactly what we have done Elliott. Together we made this movie and now it is on the blog for everyone to see!

Monday, November 3, 2008

2008 Cross Country

The Cross Country movie has been a very long time coming! Our apologies - we were back to dial up speed after exceeding our broadband plan for the month! Impossible to work with a blog at dial up speed!

THANKS HEAPS to all our supportive parents and whanau for joining us for our annual cross country at Parua Bay School. The children had trained hard and eagerly awaited the event after its postponement due to wet weather last term. It was great to finally put all that training into action. What amazingly fit children we have at Manaia - all of them enjoying the competition! Next year there will definately need to be a parents race! We look forward to your comments.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Room 6 Whangarei Heads School Visits Manaia Kindergarten

We were very excited when we found out 8 children from Whangarei Heads School and their two teachers, Mrs Humphries and Mrs Bidois were coming to visit us today. They arrived just in time to sit down and have morning tea with us. After they had all finished and had an explore around Kindergarten we had a mat time together. The school children joined in with our singing and dancing and then we sat down to have a look at their new class blog on the projector. WOW how exciting - now they have a class blog too! We will be able to keep an eye on what they are learning at school and they can look back and see what is happening with our learning at Kindergarten. Mrs Humphries talked to us about a special book and DVD they had made together on starting school at Whangarei Heads. Mrs Humphries showed us the book, the pictures they had taken, and read us some of the story. It will be a great book to keep on our Kindergarten book shelf. We will know all about starting school and what to expect when we get there. Thanks heaps to Room 6, Mrs Humphries and Mrs Bidois for coming to visit us at Manaia Kindergarten.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Whangarei Heads and Parua Bay Primary - and their Blogs

After leaving Manaia Kindergarten, our children most often attend one of two schools on the Whangarei Heads. Our closest school geographically is Parua Bay Primary. Their older children have a blog that informs their families and the community about the great things they are learning. You can find them at This friday we will be visiting Parua Bay Primary and watching the new entrant class contribution to assembly.

Whangarei Heads Primary - Later this same friday we are having a visit from the new entrant class at Whangarei Heads Primary. WHP is further down the road from us - however we continue to build our relationship up with them through visits from them and trips on buses from Manaia Kindergarten children. AND Mrs Bidois and Mrs Humphries and the children in their new entrant class have set up their own blog. We look forward to keeping up with their news, learning, skills and excitement and sharing our learning together online. Check out their new blog at -

Monday, October 20, 2008

Police Officer Belinda Visits - MAKE IT CLICK!

Today we were lucky enough to have Police Officer Belinda come to Kindergarten in her Police Car. Belinda came to talk to us about wearing our seatbelts and to check that we all "made it click" when we traveled in the car. Belinda read us a story about a car that wouldn't go because the people inside hadn't clicked their seatbelts. We learnt how important it is to ALWAYS wear your seatbelt and to be sitting in a carseat or booster seat until we are really tall! We went out to have a look at Belinda's Police Car and to have turns at showing Belinda how we "make it click" in her booster seat. Check out the photos...

Building our Garden

Thanks to Scott for carting planks and soil and motiviating the children to create our very first large 'proper' vegetable garden. The children helped to place the planks into a rectangle, screw the planks together, nail some support, load the soil and full the garden with compost and soil - ready for our seeds and seedlings. It was a hot day, with hard work - we can't wait for all the vegetables to start growing - and then for the day we are able to taste our own kindergarten grown food.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Kidpix in Action

After a great week learning about our new Big Mac we introduced the Wacom Bamboo Board and Pen.
This along with KidPix has been a fantastic learning tool today... a skill that has been picked up easily by the children of Manaia Kindergarten. After just a few minutes they were teaching their friends and when parents arrived at the end of the day - they too were being taught. Today it has been all about the process - and there were some pictures the children wanted to save (that is they did not want to wash them away with the digital water pump). Check out the learning, experimenting, and teaching...

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Mac Mania at Manaia

What fun we had today exploring what our new apple mac is capable of.. we experimented with photo booth and had a real laugh creating strange and wacky faces! There are lots of different effects to choose from and each one makes our face look totally different! We have learnt how to change the different effects and then how to take the photo. All we need to do is click on the camera, watch the numbers count backwards, 3,2, 1 and then smile for the camera... I imagine we are going to have heaps of fun with this programme and I look forward to a wall display of all our very strange faces!!! What an excellent way of learning as a team and then being able to share our new skills with others.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Poi and Jakob back from holidays

We are all back from wonderful holidays. Jakob is first to tell his story about Poi's visit with him over the last two weeks.

This is the last Poi Movie we will be posting on this blog. Poi now has his own blog. Make sure you keep checking Poi's blog to see whose house she is visiting and what adventures she is having...

Friday, October 10, 2008

ULearn08 Conference and Presentation

What an amazing experience ULearn08 has been! It has been fantastic to catch up with ECE teachers on this project again. Our e-lationships have been deepened to true friendships. The encouragement shown between the teachers for the numerous breakout presentations has been amazing. We certainly felt hugely supported for our keynote presentation which was part of the finale at conference. Our nerves built up as we considered people's reactions to our message. As representatives for ECE it was a huge honour and challenge to showcase what is happening with ICT in our kindergarten as well as highlighting what is happening in ECE across the board. Our knees shook, our throats went dry, and the time arrived. It was great to see many ECE friends out in the audience supporting - and away we went. It was over in a flash - and the message was out. We had wonderful feedback from all sectors - many of whom conveyed this reaction - "wow - if ECE children are getting that skilled in ICT we in the other sectors are going to have to keep up and fast."

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Pinocchio - At Ulearn

After a fantastic holiday to Italy (see my blog), I am at the ULearn08 Conference in Christchurch with Tania. My preconference workshop has taught me how to use "I Can Animate" - a fantastic programme we will all explore further in the new term.  Here is a taste of Italy, and the animation I created with Shayne from Greenwood Kindergarten.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Our Tamariki in Action - Our CONCERT!

A much anticipated event - our end of term concert. We had thoroughly enjoyed our time on stage at Parua Bay's Talent Quest and decided we needed more. The children discussed the songs they would like to sing and the dances they wanted to share - a huge list was created.... The invites were organised, the excitement was building... The day finally arrived - we worked together to set up our stage with seats for our audience, WOW what a turn out. We danced and sang our hearts out for our friends, family and whanau. A special thanks to everyone who came along to watch and a VERY SPECIAL THANKS to Wendy and Eleanor our amazing relievers. We enjoyed a shared lunch afterwards to farewell Wendy from Manaia Kindergarten.

We hope you are all enjoying your holidays. We are now in Christchurch and FREEZING! A wee bit colder than the North. We are looking forward to sharing our learning and inspiring others with the amazing abilities of the children at Manaia Kindergarten.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Last Blog Post for Term 3 08

What an amazing term it has been. Term 3 saw the brief introduction of our new teacher, Dee Myhre before she set off on her big adventure to Europe. We have been lucky enough to have Wendy Small as our reliever extraordinaire. Wendy has become a valuable part of our teaching team and our Manaia Kindergarten family and we will miss her heaps! Our amazing blogging ripple as spread far and wide and with Beverly's family spending time in Tuscany, Italy, blogging, it was all too much for Beverly! Seeing their photos and reading their stories of life in Italy was just too good an opportunity to miss - not to mention it was her Father's 70th Birthday. Off Beverly went on her adventure to the UK and Italy. In comes Eleanor - Eleanor is simply amazing. Our valued and reliable reliever throughout the year steps up yet again to join us. Tracey, like Eleanor, continues to step back in when needed, fitting us in alongside her family life and studies to be a midwife! Beverly and I absolutely appreciate that we have incredible relievers who are such a part of our Kindergarten team.

It's been an incredible term - will definitely be remembered for the rain and mud! (Was absolutely wonderful to actually PLAY on the grass today!) We have welcomed new children and their families and enjoyed an incredible amount of learning together. Thanks so much to all of our supportive families and friends. A special thanks also to our families and friends far and wide who keep in constant touch through our blog. Your comments are truly valued and inspirational to the children and team at Manaia Kindergarten.

During the holidays I will work on getting our concert movie and photos on the blog so keep an eye out... Wish us luck for our presentation at "Celebrating Northland's Tamariki" conference and for our keynote presentation at ULearn08 in Christchurch. Enjoy your holidays.
The Manaia Team

Look Beverly - The grass is dry!

Jessi and Poi's adventures

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Have you heard???

Guess what these children are working on??? Invitations for a very special event! On Friday we are planning to have a Manaia Kindergarten Concert, followed by a shared lunch to farewell Wendy, our VERY SPECIAL Teacher. Have you got your invitation? The children have been thinking hard about what they would like to perform at the concert. We came up with lots of different ideas today and then decided to make the invitations. The words for the invitation were all decided on by the children and made by a team of Daniel, Milly, Lucy, Freya, Holly and Noah. We will practise for our concert this week and look forward to sharing our songs and dances with you all on Friday. Come along and see us in action and farewell Wendy with us.

Poi at Megs

Monday, September 22, 2008

Parua Bay Talent Quest 08

A long time ago we heard Parua Bay School were planning a Talent Quest and we were invited to enter... We thought hard about the songs and dances we would like to perform - it was a tough decision. We practised lots of songs and dances, especialy Poi E, Te Aroha, Gorillas in the Zoo and Knees Up Mother Brown. We found out we could only do two songs so a decision needed to me made. We decided on Poi E and Knees Up Mother Brown so everyone who wanted to could join in. WOW what a night, 17 Kindergarten children up on stage and ready to share their talents with the Parua Bay community. We were VERY PROUD of our Manaia Kindergarten children as they sang and danced their hearts out on stage. It was great to then watch the children of Parua Bay sing, dance, play instruments and tell jokes. A great family night. Thanks to Parua Bay School for inviting us. Perhaps we can have a Talent Quest of our own next term and invite our families along to watch...

Poi and Noah's adventures

Poi had her first bike ride at Pataua Beach with Noah. How lucky to explore our amazing Whangarei Heads Beaches. Thanks Noah for taking Poi on such a great adventure. Have a listen as Noah tells us all about Poi at his house...

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Toasting Pizza in Tuscany

Ok - so it was a bit cool on our first day - thus the jacket. But read more about our evening of pizza here.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Cruising the Thames

I have had a very nice time with my Mum and Dad on their Canal boat in the UK. We had wanted to cruise the Oxford canals but first they had to get up the big Thames river to get to Oxford. Unfortunately there was a lot of water and it was rushing down too fast. They had red warnings up and we were told not to travel up the Thames. We did move a little bit, but it was sometimes a bit scarey. So in the end we stopped in Addingdon. There were some beautiful spots along the Thames on our long canal boat so I thought I would share some photos with you... here they go.
Steering from the back of the long boat.
Holding the boat in the lock (more on that on my own blog - later)
Moored beside a meadow of cows in the early morning mist.
Hope all is going well at Kindergarten. It looks like Poi is having some great adventures.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Poi goes bush with Ari!

Poi is having so many amazing adventures with the children of Manaia Kindergarten. I hope Madeline is keeping up to date with Poi and his sleep overs at everyones houses. It must be time to create a blog for Poi too!

Poi visits Jack's Farm

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Feeding the Birds of Manaia

We have two bird houses at Manaia Kindergarten - we hoped by feeding the birds in their very own houses they would stay away from our kai table...

Everyday children climb the ladder to put food up for the birds in their little house. Sometimes bird seed and other days bread...

Then, we have to stand back and wait patiently for the birds to discover our offerings..

Yesterday Wendy thought she was a National Geographic Photographer as she caught this photo of a bird in flight with a piece of bread in its mouth...

This is another photo taken by Wendy - the view from the birds house! Aren't they lucky! Unfortunatley no matter how much we feed the birds they still like to flock around our kai table and pick up all of our crumbs!!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Hi from Brunei

I am sitting in an internet cafe in Brunei. I have just been on a free tour around the city and seen mosques with real gold domes on the top (you can see a picture here - I took some photos but am not able to put them onto the blog yet). I have one coming in the post to you.
I have 10hrs in Brunei and then a 15hr flight to the UK. Hope you all have a great week. I will try and post again when I can.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Glorious Mud!

What a lot of fun we had today at Kindergarten! Check out the movie below to see...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Poi visits Zara's house...

Meet Poi - our new friend at Kindergarten

It was Madeline's last day at Manaia Kindergarten and her family wanted to buy us all something special. We talked about what we needed and thought another "take home friend" would be great. Ekko is in great demand and it's a long time to wait to have a turn... Now we have Ekko and Poi the Panda to have turns at going home to our houses. Poi the Panda spent her first weekend at Madeline's house to celebrate Madeline's 5th birthday party. How lucky! Check out the movie of all the fun Poi had. THANKS HEAPS to the Whittam family for bringing Poi along to our Kindergarten. We will take extra special care of her. Good Luck at school Madeline.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Mary IS a little lamb

wow - Mary followed Jack to school one day - and we were all delighted!
Thanks to Jack's family for sharing this awesome experience.

Joshua's Fiji Holiday

Thanks for bringing in your Fiji photos to share with us Joshua. How lucky you were to fly to the sunshine and enjoying swimming and snorkelling in Fiji. You were very keen to put your photos into a movie for the blog.... I know your family and friends will enjoy listening to your story. Great movie making Joshua.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Introducing Ekko

With the departure of Nutkin to Bali, and the arrival of Ekko from Indonesia we have begun a new blog and new adventures with the Orangutan. Check out the adventures of Ekko at Manaia. I'm sure Ekko will be visiting your home soon!

Monday, August 25, 2008

"I love my Dad coming to Kindergarten..."

It was great to be back at Kindergarten after spending Thursday and Friday in Auckland on our continued learning journey. What fun everyone had while we were away working hard!! We hear there was a special visit from Mary - the baby lamb and we had lots of children tell us about the medals they had made.... we talked some more and found out Gary (Maz's Dad) had spent the morning at Kindergarten inspiring the children of Manaia Kindergarten to become Olympic Athletes! The children created and designed medals and wore them proudly around their necks. The photos told the story - busy children and a dedicated Dad helping and encouraging them in their work. Check out the photos and listen to Maz talking so proudly about his Dad. Listen carefully as he only talks to some photos...

We are so lucky that we have many Dad's at Manaia who play a huge part in their children's education.

Keep a look out for the upcoming movie of Mary the Lamb visiting Kindergarten!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Pizza Extravaganza

An afternoon of pizza was planned to bring families together and as an opportunity for families to meet our new relieving teacher - Wendy. The idea blossomed and everyone was looking forward to a day of pizza. We saw Mathew's Blog Post (Beverly's nephew) and his Mum's about pizza making in Italy - how to make dough balls, how to knead the dough, and how to smother it with topping. We had a fantastic morning doing just that - chopping, dough making, kneading, flipping, grating, cooking and best of all - eating...

If you want an Italian desert - check out the Tuscan Dessert Lasanga

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Face Painting Fun

WOW Look at our faces! Today we were lucky enough to have two Face Painter Extroadanaire's at Manaia Kindergarten! Bella and Lisa (Ruben and Lucy's Mums) came to share their amazing skills with us. They were busy for the whole morning creating butterflies, tigers, puppy dogs, sunsets, fairies and flower designs. It was a great exercise in using our turn taking skills and patience. What fantastic faces we ended our day with. I wonder if all of the parents knew which child to take home with them! Thanks so much to Bella and Lisa for spending the morning with us! We appreciate your huge effort.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Frosty Day at Manaia

This is for you - Cindy (see Cindy's comment on a previous Manaia Kindergarten post).

It was a COLD morning at Manaia Kindergarten on Monday. The ground was white. The tops of the boxes were white. The sandpit crunched under our feet. We found a thermometer and over the morning the temperature went down to C2 Degrees . We were able to make shapes in the 'snow' - like 'snow' angels, and 'snow'men. We even threw 'snow' balls.

BUT - by noon - Wow!! Have a look at the movie for our fantastic fun in the cold.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Most Popular Dance at Kindergarten!

The Gorilla Dance seems to be the absolute favourite at Manaia Kindergarten at the moment. Every day The Gorilla Dance is requested for mat time and during the session. Holly has been visiting with her Mum and baby brother getting to know us ready for when she starts at Kindergarten very soon. Obviously Holly has really enjoyed The Gorilla Dance too! At mat time today when The Gorilla Dance was playing, Holly whispered that she would like a turn. Luckily Beverly gave in to the "lets do it agains" and Holly got to stand in the middle and be the first Gorilla in the Zoo. How brave Holly! After mat time Holly requested The Gorilla Dance again and again and again. There were other children happy to join in. Here are some photos of Holly in action on her visit at Manaia Kindergarten. We will have to work on getting the children to sing the song for our blog!

Working with Numbers

Monday, August 11, 2008

Madeline's Weekend

Last week at Kindergarten Madeline had comments on the blog from her cousins in England. Adam asked Madeline to draw her a picture at Kindergarten. Madeline set herself a goal to do this and worked hard at Kindergarten on drawing a picture and making an envelope to send to Adam and then also a letter for Grandma and Grandad. I talked to Angela (Madeline's Mum) and asked if she could take photos of Madeline posting her letters to Adam and Grandma and Granddad. Angela took the digital camera home and has put together a movie using PhotoStory 3 for our Kindergarten blog. Thanks Angela - we really appreciate you!

Friday, August 8, 2008

"Look - I can do all the monkey bars"

When Chloe arrived at Kindergarten today - she told me that she could do three rungs on the monkey bars. We took some photos and a video so that we could look back on this day when she was able to do all the monkey bars...

It didn't take long - by the end of session, Chloe came back to me and said "Look - I can do all the monkey bars now!". Wow Chloe - you worked hard all day practicing the monkey bars and NOW look at you...

Thursday, August 7, 2008

A show for Richard

Richard Storey is our new General Manager at the Northland Kindergarten Association. Richard and the awesome team at the Northland Kindergarten Association have made many amazing changes to the Asssociation in the last few months and we really appreciate the huge effort they have put in. We are absolutely LOVING having a third teacher at Manaia and enjoying the valuable time we are able to spend with individuals and small groups of children concentrating on learning together. Today Richard popped out for a social visit and was lucky enough to have Madeline and Milly put on a show for him. Richard enjoyed their rendition of "Poi E", a definate favourite of Manaia children - look at our kindergarten blog post about when we made our Poi.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Manaia Kindergarten and Our Mountain

This is our Kindergarten Portrait. During Manaia Kindergarten's bus trip we lunched at the base of our Mountain - Mt Manaia.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Jonathan Conquers the Bridge

Today Jonathan Conquered the Net Bridge. Jonathan you were very couragous. First we walked up the plank onto the small box. You were happy to stand there for a while and you were not too sure about going any higher. So we just sat on the higher box until you were ready to pull yourself up. We looked at the things we could see from the high box as you stood there holding my hand. We could see the tops of children's heads, we were higher than the monkey bars, and we could see the top of our new bridge. I said to you that maybe we could try the bridge the next day, but after standing up there for a while, you decided you were ready to try it today. I stood in front of you and held your hands and slowly we made our way across. You were very pleased with yourself when you reached the other end. Later on in the day you were ready to give the bridge another go with Tania. We brought out the video camera for you to share your experience with your Mum and Dad and friends at school. Wow Jonathan - you went across the bridge twice with Tania and the second time you went across all by yourself. You were so happy you jumped off the boxes one by one and then ran and jumped confidently into the sandpit. What great climbing Johnathan!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

New Bars

When we arrived back at Kindergarten after the holidays we had a surprise waiting. A spin bar, parallel bars, and a new stage! We were eager to try it all out. We took photos and Zoe said "We could put the photos on the blog for Cindy!". Then we had a week of torrential rain and wind - storms became the topic of conversation until the sun came out again today. And today we had other new pieces of equipment - a net bridge and bannister rails! It was great to be in the great outdoors again after a week watching the rain. We practiced balancing, co-ordination, spinning. It was great to tread carefully across the bridge - watching our step rather than the ground under the net. We have explored many ways of using the parallel bars and are increasing our upper body strength. We have to remember to concentrate when sliding down the bannister rails. Its great to be outdoors, moving out bodies, making our hearts beat faster and our muscles grown stronger.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

AAAAAAAri's PhotoStory

Ari said "I want to make a movie in the office"

After making the movie I asked Ari what he wanted to do with his movie. Ari said I want it on my DVD, at home and on the big screen.

Healthy Heart Award

WOW For the second year running we have achieved our "Healthy Heart Award" at Manaia Kindergarten. Today Rona from the Heart Foundation came to present us with our Certificate. We talked to Rona about how we look after our heart and keep it healthy. We told Rona all of the healthy foods in our lunch boxes and the clear water we have from our water filter. We also talked about all of the active movement we do. A HUGE THANKS to all of our Kindergarten families for providing excellent food choices for the children of Manaia Kindergarten.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

We Visited the Dental Nurse

On our first day back at Kindergarten this term, we visited the Dental Nurse. We went to check out the clinic and see what happens at the Dentist. We sat in the waiting room and then quietly went into the clinic. Anya, Olivia, Nellie and Noah all choose to sit in the dentist chair. When you visit the Dental Nurse you will get to wear a cool pair of glasses. These protect your eyes from the bright light that she shines on your teeth. The Dental Nurse uses a small mirror and as scraper to check your teeth. She said that we should brush our teeth twice a day - before we go to bed and after we have eaten our breakfast. We should use as much toothpaste as the size of a pea. When we have finished brushing our teeth we should either spit or swallow our tooth paste - but not rinse because we need all the flouride we can get in Northland (as we don't have any in our water). She also suggested that we let an adult clean our teeth once a day so they can get all the nitty gritty food out from the back and behind our teeth. We were so lucky after our visit to the Dental Nurse - she gave us all a stamp (motorbike or butterfly) and a sticker.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Mobilo Aeroplane

Jack wanted to create an aeroplane with the mobilo. So with the help of a card he found all the pieces he needed and together we found the attachments and began creating. When finished, Jack set another goal for himself - he wanted to build a helicopter! After working on these creations, Jack exclaimed "Take a video, and we can put it on the blog"

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Manaia Kindergarten Bus Trip

When Geraldine Kindergarten set about to create a painting for Manaia Kindergarten showing important places in Geraldine, they first went on a bus trip got get to know their place. We watched their Bus Trip Video on their Blog. We thought it was a great idea, and so, as part of our Matariki Celebrations, we thought it would be a good idea for Manaia Kindergarten to go on a Bus Trip and get to know our area, the Whangarei Heads. The children have begun painting pictures about places and things that they felt were important. We have been talking about different beaches, whales in the sea, dolphins and of course Mt Manaia. We have looked at pictures on the internet and in books. Today we went to see these things for real - and take our own photos of landmarks that stood out for us. We had had to postpone the trip by a week, and our new date proved to have magnificent weather - it was all go for a wonderful trip on a bus. We visited McLeod Bay, Reotahi, drove through Tarakura, and frolicked in Urquharts before popping in to the Whangarei Heads Primary on the way home. The children of Whangarei Heads Primary School gathered to sing us their school song - a resounding rendition that awed the children of Manaia Kindergarten. We popped in to visit our friends in Room 6, where Sue the teacher, read all her children, and our 30 children, the story of the Jelly Bean Tree. A jublient and tired group clambered back onto the bus, and Toni, our very patient and accommodating bus drive, sedately drove us back to Kindergarten.

Here are the photos as contributed by teachers, parents and children alike...

When Tracey, from Geraldine Kindergarten, brought Manaia Kindergarten their painting, we were so impressed we thought we would also have a try at putting together a painting about our area. Although work on this has begun, it is a work in progress and our ideas continue to develop. As you can see, there is huge potential, and the process will be revisited in the new term.

So - have you visited the Whangarei Heads? Are you a resident, a visitor, or would you like to come to our place. We love our place. What about you?

Friday, July 4, 2008

Mount Manaia Mash

Today we read a story at mat time called "I will not ever never eat a Tomato" - it is about a little girl Lola who will not eat lots of vegetables and her big brother Charlie trys different ways to encourage her to try. Lola doesn't like mashed potato but when she trys out cloud fluff all the way from Mount Fuji she decides it is delicious!! At the end of the book I remembered we had vegetables left from our boil up and wondered what we could make with those... after lots of thinking and playing around with names we decided on "Mount Manaia Mash!" A team of helpers got together to peel and chop the vegetables. (We are becoming so skilled at this!) Then, after the veges were cooked another team worked on mashing them together. Finally at mat time we got to eat our Mount Manaia Mash. YUM YUM - everyone tried our mash and we had plenty of Mmmmm delicious - heard around Kindergarten. Excellent work team and well done everyone for trying out our mash. Do you remember what vegetables we used?

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Boil Up

During our Matariki celebrations we read many books - including Mere Mckaskill's Boil Up (by Tracy Duncan, Reed Publication). Boil Up is a well known Maori Feast including lots of great cheap vegetables such as potato, kumara, pumpkin (and anything else you would have handy), and a big chunk of bacon hock (or pork bones of any sort). To add flavour a few bunches of Puha or Watercress is preferable (which you can pick from the side of the road, or out in the paddock). We decided to give it a go for our whanau and friends. We gathered the vegetables over the week. Sari brought in the watercress and Leonnie from 4Square sold us the Bacon Hock and gave out free advice for our feast. Many children thought they probably wouldn't try it - but as the smells of the food being stewed throughout the Friday Morning filled the Kindergarten - we all became hungry for the feast...

Friday, June 27, 2008

A Book about numbers...

Click on the front of the book to start the story... click on each page to turn the pages...Click on the eyes if you would like to make the book bigger and this takes you to a web page where you can view more books. ENJOY! Thanks to Cindy for giving us this link and idea.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Matariki Celebrations

We have been so busy at Manaia Kindergarten - we have hardly had time to blog!!

We have been celebrating Matariki - the rise of the Seven Stars in the east - the Pleiades cluster - the start of the Maori New Year. We have read the story about Matariki, and how Maori remember those who have passed and look to the future. Matariki is a time to get the soil ready and plant food for the future. Everybody at kindergarten is enjoying the celebrations!! We have heard great legends about Maui and his big fish. We learned the we live on the tail of the giant sting ray that is Te Ika a Maui (the north island of New Zealand). We have been learning some of the movements of a variety of Haka and the te reo (maori language) that goes with the haka. Everyone joined in creating poi (as seen in the moive below) and what a fantastic resource these have been as we discover the movements and words of Poi E. We are looking forward to our trip around the Whangarei Heads on a bus to learn more about our area and the Maori legends and history behind Mt Manaia.

(Check out our previous Poi making experiences on our Kindergarten Blog and how our skills have developed - also shown on our Kindergarten Blog)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Tracey from Geraldine brings the painting

The children at Geraldine have been skyping us and talking to us about a painting they wanted to send to Manaia Kindergarten with their teacher Tracey. Geraldine Kindergarten took a bus trip around Geraldine to gather ideas for their painting and an artist came in to support them in their painting. As they worked on their painting Geraldine skyped us to show us their progress. They finished the painting last week and today Tracey visited Manaia Kindergarten presented the children of Manaia Kindergarten with their masterpiece.

Did you see the Four Peak Mountains? Do you remember the name of the river that runs through Geraldine? And all the children of Geraldine.

Julia's Trip to the Zoo

Julia narrates her story about a trip to the Zoo. After it's completion, Julia assessed her story by watching and listening to the movie she had created. Looking thoughtful, Julia eventually says "Hey, that's copying my words". Here are her words, as spoken by Julia...

Monday, May 19, 2008

Giant Swing

Today we placed a plank between two swings. This created a GIANT SWING. Instead of three friends swinging together - we could swing with almost 8 friends - and on the same swing. If we were not sitting close enough to hold onto the ropes we had to practice our balance and we were swung high and low. Many of the children had amazing upper body balance. Anya and Milly also tried something new. Check it out on our video!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Building Volcanes

We had a fantastic day in the sandpit yesterday building volcanoes! There were 4 huge volcanoes in the sandpit and everyone wanted to make them explode. Ari's Mum, Justine, took photos of the whole experience. And, together with his Mum, Ari created a movie to tell you all about it. So without further ado - Ari and Justine tell it all...

Thursday, May 8, 2008

having a hit!

We are practicing our fundamental movement skills. Today we were concentrating on the two handed strike using noodles as our hitting instruments. We blew up balloons (some of us had a lot of puff and some of us had none!) and Kim helped us to tie them up at different heights. We had turns at hitting the balloons and some of them even POPPED! We tried working with partners to hit the balloons backwards and forwards to each other. We will continue to focus on our fundamental movement skills in our play at Kindergarten.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Getting their wings!

Today we began to learn about jumping as far as we can. We talked about the best way to jump and which way would get us the furthest. It is recommended that to jump for distance it is best to bend at the knees, push your arms out straight behind you and then spring forward. As you fly through the air, you need to push your arms and legs forward. It is safest then to land on both feet - remember to keep your balance. How far can you jump?

Maybe you can teach your parents at home!

Carpentry on the first day back!

The carpentry table was full on action today as the Manaia builders arrived back at Kindergarten. We even had 4 of our new children checking out the tools and equipment available. Excellent team work and communication skills as the builder worked alongside each other to build and create. The children experimented with drills, hammers, vices, pliers and saws and were excited by their results. Amazing persistence is required to saw through a piece of wood and children were proving this skill today! We look forward to watching the children working at the carpentry table more this term and seeing their skills develop further.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I'm back from Holiday

Hi Everyone
Nutkin here! I'm back from my holiday. You can check out my movie here or click on my picture on the right of this blog. Look forward to seeing you all next week and hearing your holiday stories too!
Love Nutkin

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Learn to tell the time

Springs Trails Kindergarten children, USA, are learning about clocks and telling the time. Cindy, their teacher, has made a great movie about telling the time. You might like to learn about this too. Watch their movie at Kindergarten Tales

Friday, April 18, 2008

Message from Nutkin

Nutkin says - Have a great 2 week holiday everyone. Rest, Relax - have some adventures and enjoy your family and friends. Nutkin is off on holiday with Tania

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Exploring symbols, letters and words...

Children at Manaia Kindergarten are encouraged to explore art, symbol making and writing through the resources provided. Children need a print rich environment to learn about writing, how it is used (signs, forms, stories, labeling), and why it is used (lists, instructions, conveying a message). Encourage your children to help you with your shopping list, draw maps, read road symbols, etc This way they learn that writing and symbols can be read and understood for many purposes. There are a range of stages children explore when they begin to learn to write. These do not always follow a set pattern and children explore the stages progressively and simultaneously - so it is common that a child who has learned to formulate conventional letters also finds purpose and enjoyment in scribbling and exploring pretend symbols. Watch how Manaia Kindergarten children explore the world of writing.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

10 Apples on Top

What awesomely healthy eaters we have at Manaia Kindergarten. Today Aimee said to Zara "Hey, I've got an apple too" when we were sitting eating out kai. It didn't take long for the rest of the kai eaters to discover 10 more apples in lunch boxes.

Hey - it's great that so many know that...
An Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away.

Keep remembering your 5+ a Day!!
Well Done Manaia Healthy Eaters.