Our Philosophy

Our Philosophy

Manaaki whenua, manaaki tangata, haere whakamua

Care for the land, care for the people, go forward

Open Spaces is a loving and engaging place of learning for our tamariki, kaiako and whānau. We provide a safe, educational, nurturing and fun environment for all. Within this environment children are encouraged to practice social competence, risk management and curiosity. Three key skills for future growth.

We acknowledge, respect and promote the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and ensure our tamariki experience an environment that values and promotes Te Ao Māori.

We acknowledge Te Whāriki, the New Zealand early childhood curriculum. It guides and inspires everything we do as teachers.

Open Spaces is a nature-rich community and our relationships with Papatūānuku guide our values and practice.

As Kaitiaki/ guardians we:

  • emphasise a nature-based education for its breadth of learning;
  • offer meaningful connections to Papatūānuku throughout our curriculum;
  • promote respect, care and protection of all life;
  • want tamariki to know the joy of being with nature;
We believe that Ngā Hononga / Relationships are the foundations for all learning; where respectful, reciprocal, honest and trusting relationships create a sense of well-being, a strong positive identity, self-esteem and confidence to climb the tallest mountain. Through free-play and intentional teaching, tamariki learn both independently and alongside their peers and teachers. We value and practice Tuakana-Teina and the notion of interdependence.

We value learning dispositions such as curiosity, imagination, creativity and perseverance. Whakamana / Empowerment sees tamariki initiate and lead their own learning, accept leadership and responsibility. Our emergent curriculum is based on authentic learning experiences based on children’s strengths and interests.

We recognise and value Whānau Tangata / Family and Community as experts and as partners in the nurturing of tamariki. We support the cultural capital of tamariki and their whānau and endeavour to incorporate family perspectives and expertise into the curriculum.

At Open Spaces we welcome, value and respect diversity within our centre.

Contact Us

09 437 5718



592 Ngunguru Road, RD3 Kiripaka
Whangarei, New Zealand