Building Effective Professional Learning & Support Networks

This professional learning group is the newest of our PLGs to be formed in our Hereora LCC and was established with the view to build relationships and share best teaching practice among our cluster early year colleagues - over a nice cup of coffee and cake. 

ECE and Junior Teachers met once a term at different schools to talk about and share our early years teaching experiences. We are finding this to be very informative and very beneficial as we build our collaborative and support networks with the shared perspective of early years teaching and learning. 

The goal for this group is to explore, share and participate in professional learning through engaging in topics, resources, professional expertise and support services that are relevant to the Early Years teaching and learning. Initial goals include: literacy development and assessment data collection and reporting, transitioning, culturally responsive practice and collaborative learning practices. 
Hui Resource Kete

Early Years PLG
Week 6, each term
Thursday @ 3:30 - 5:00pm
Locations rotate across all Educational settings
ECE and Early Years School Teachers
    Shared afternoon tea
    Discussion, collaboration, sharing
    Guest speakers

For further information please feel free to Contact Us 
Early Years Professional Learning Group
Term 1 - 2017
Meeting DetailsMonday 6th March @ 3:30-5:00pm
Location: Kidsfirst Kindergarten Isleworth Rd          
Who: ECE & Early Years Primary Teachers, Sue Williams Facilitating Story Hui
Focus: PLG evaluation & review using Story Hui (Sue Williams) and alignment against the Hereora VV&Ps. Clarifying key purpose of the group and identifying goals for 2017.

Hereora Story Hui
Hereora Story Hui
Story Hui is a process for evaluating successful learning in areas not covered by formal testing, we need innovative evaluation tools that describe learning in wider terms. 

Our cluster has selected to use Story Hui as a way to evaluate what the cluster Professional Learning Groups have been doing and how aligned the groups are to our emerging Hereora Vision, Values and Principles.

Click on the images below to visit each groups PLG Story Hui Evaluation - These are documented through digital text and a visual map of the story/reflections shared by the storyteller.

Watch this space for the analysis and feedback...

What’s on Top? Where to next?
Oral Language - 
The group would like to invite guest speakers to provide an expert education session focusing on Oral Language development, strategies, resources & support. There would be a Q&A session to help with the teachers concerns & needs in this area. Cluster schools/centres could also share aspect of their programmes/resources/assessments. 
Note: This is the focus for the Term 2 PLG Session - Raywyn is contacting a guest speaker
Behavioural Optometrist - Developing a more holistic approach in the treatment of vision and visual perceptual problems.
Writing Experiences - Building on from the moderation session held last year. The teachers would like to explore writing programmes and experiences across the schools & ECEs - sharing the programmes, resources, ideas, collaborative practise.
Collaborative practice - Exploring & sharing collaborative teaching and learning practices across the schools & ECEs (lead to visits?)
Mathematics - Across cluster sharing of teaching & learning experiences, resources and expertise in mathematics.
Whanau Education - Exploring ideas of how this group could be developing Whanau Partnership - education workshops/sessions with guest speakers/expert, resources/ideas for at home (eg: developing oral language, maths in our everyday lives).
Early Years Professional Learning Group
Term 3 - 2016

Meeting DetailsThursday 8th September @ 3:30pm
Location: Bishopdale Community Preschool          
Who: ECE & Early Years Primary Teachers
Focus: Teaching Learning Dispositions in ECE & NE

Our discussions this term focused on teaching Learning Dispositions and what this means and looks like in both the new entrant classroom and ECE service.  

We began by exploring the question Rowan Taigel posed in her recent blog ‘Seriously What are School For?  This talked about learning in the 21st century and the shift in the type of skills our tamariki are going to need to be successful in a changing society. Rowan, like many other educationalists, believes that our children need to hone their skills at learning how to learn in order to be successful.  Being fantastic collaborators, resilient to change and diversity, persistent when faced with a challenge or uncertainty and confident at expressing their ideas, feeling and points of view, will be vital skills in this century.
In our discussion we identified the very real tension between focusing on developing and nurturing these kinds of learning dispositions, and the more traditional academic learning outcomes, that our tamariki are tested on in order to assess their skills and abilities.  Teachers in both the ECE and Primary sectors agreed that this is often a challenge and through a group task we discovered that there were many common ways that teachers include dispositional learning in the classroom.
To deepen our understanding of the importance of this kind of teaching and learning we looked at an interview with Guy Claxton, an educational researcher from England who developed a teaching programme called Building Learning Power.   

This programme focuses on putting dispositional learning at the forefront of the classroom and the interview gave us all food for thought as we closed our Hui and made some plans for next year. 
 Sarah Straver
Bishopdale Community Preschool


  • 2010. Guy Claxton. Building Learning Power. TLO ltd.Bristol
  • 2009. R Delaney, L Day and M Chambers. Learning Power Heroes. TLO Ltd. Bristol
  • 2012. C Hartley. P Rogers, J Smith, S Peters, and M Carr. Crossing the Boarder, A community negotiates the transition from early childhood to primary school. NZCER Press. NZ
Early Years Professional Learning Group
Term 2 - 2016
Meeting Details:       
Thursday 2nd June, 3:30pm
Harewood School, 
ECE & Early Primary Teachers
Writing  moderation across Hereora 
Schools & ECEs.

On Thursday 2 June, the Early Years Group meet at Harewood School. This group is a mix of teachers from early childhood as well as primary.The purpose of the session was to talk about how we engage our learners in the writing process and to look at the progression from early childhood to school and to look at the different methods and tools we use for moderating writing samples.

The Early Childhood centres engage the children in a range of ways, using their favourite books and personal interests. They use a holistic approach, integrating writing experiences into their everyday environment. At this level, the writing is driven by the children. Oral language is important and the pre-schools work hard on providing experiences that encourage rich language experiences. The children can then choose to develop this further through drawing or writing. Teachers will scribe for them, if they wish.

Once the children start school, the writing process becomes more structured, however, the learning through play and experiences remain an important focus. Children are involved in setting their writing goals and knowing their next steps. 

Teachers use a range of motivations to hook their learners into writing, such as photos, mystery items, personal experiences and Youtube clips. Teachers work on different ways of celebrating successes and efforts by taking photos of children’s work to put on display. Methods such as these, are working well to motivate boys writing.  They love being able to share their writing in different ways.

Some teachers shared how they used the asTTle writing rubric to support writing moderation. All schools use the Writing Progressions to help make their overall teacher judgements although how they do this is  slightly different. Alongside this, teachers talked about the importance of providing relevant goals and quality feedback with children. It was interesting discussing the different ways of structuring this within our schools.

Teachers found talking with their colleagues from cluster schools a beneficial experience. Ideas and resources were freely shared. Discussions generated in each group helped teachers go away with things to think about and ideas to try back in their own centres and schools. Having the cross over between preschool and junior teachers present has helped us all gain a deeper understanding of what children come with and what the next level of expectations are.

Joanna Woods, Phoebe Sopp
Harewood School

Literacy learning Progressions
The Literacy Learning Progressions, one of the professional tools provided to support the New Zealand Curriculum.

It describes the specific literacy knowledge, skills, and attitudes that students draw on in order to meet the reading and writing demands of the curriculum.

e-asTTle Assessment Resources
e-asTTle is an online assessment tool, developed to assess students’ achievement and progress in reading, mathematics, writing, and in pānui, pāngarau, and tuhituhi.