Our Classes

Mt Alford Te Maka Kaha (Y0-1)

Teacher: Georgina Turpie

Kia ora, my name is Georgie Turpie and I am the New Entrant teacher and Deputy Principal here at Lauriston School. I feel very lucky to be a part of Lauriston School, it is a very special school full of amazing children and a welcoming, supportive community.
 
Being a New Entrant teacher I get to see the huge development children make as they transition into school life and the amazing progress they make in such a short time. We run a combined play based and structured learning programme in our New Entrant space where the benefits of play are combined with structured learning experiences that teach the key skills and knowledge children need to be a foundation to their education.
 
We have a big focus on developing a sense of identity as well as our school values, competencies and building independence as children get used to school life. Our enterprise curriculum overarches our learning and we spend time out in our school garden where children begin to use student agency.
 
If you are considering Lauriston as a schooling option for your preschooler we warmly invite you to come in for a visit and spend some time in our New Entrant space.
 

 

Mt Harper – Mahaanui (Y1-2)

Jason Taylor/ Elyse Adams

Hi, my name is Jason Taylor. I have been teaching at Lauriston School since the start of 2021 and have been blown away by our amazing, supportive community.
 
As the teacher in Mt Harper, I am very focused on developing positive and supportive relationships within the classroom which have shown to enhance learning. I approach all classrooms and all children differently depending on their individual needs and always strive to improve my teaching pedagogies to meet the needs of my children.
 
I draw on the interests and strengths of the children to help them reach their full potential. I aim to create a caring and supportive learning environment where children can grow physically, mentally, socially and emotionally. I teach with enthusiasm and energy and love the theatrics of teaching, particularly within the junior age groups. For children to develop a love of learning, it needs to be challenging, engaging, relatable and most of all fun.
 
My wife and I have been married for over 10 years and have three wonderful children together. It was becoming a father that convinced me that I wanted to be working with and alongside children. We are very settled within Mid Canterbury and consider ourselves very fortunate to be able to call the region our home. When I am not teaching I enjoy spending quality time with family and friends, mountain biking, hiking and enjoying all the amazing things our country has to offer.
 

Mt Hutt – Huirapa (Y3)

Laura Twiss

 

Our Mt Hutt classroom is made up of year two and year three children who have a passion for learning. We value sharing ideas, taking risks, expressing ourselves and having fun! We know we work best as a team when we celebrate the uniqueness of each other and foster a give it a go attitude. At times we work collaboratively with Mt Harper for parts of our programme and often use our school whare to guide our learning. Our school farm and enterprise values are certainly highlights of our school. We look forward to pet day, athletics and our annual end of year trip. We just love seeing each other’s big smiles as we come through the Lauriston gate each day!

 

A little bit about our teacher Miss Twiss…
Hi! My name is Laura Twiss and I joined the teaching team at Lauriston School in 2020 after graduating from the University of Otago. What drew me to Lauriston was the vibrant rural setting and welcoming team that this place stands from. I grew up on a farm in Mid Canterbury and enjoy getting outdoors to spend time with my family and friends. My favourite age to teach is this year group because I adore seeing the shift these children make as they prepare for the senior school. The excitement and eagerness these children have to learn are what drive my passion to create life-long learners. Here at Lauriston School, my passion lies with all things sport and outdoor education as well as our music and cultural events.
 

Mt Winterslow – Opihako (Y4-5)

Nerina Hawkins

Mt Winterslow (Opihako) is a Year 4/5 class. We work collaboratively with Mt Somers (Te Kiekie) and take an active role in planning and decision making with everything we do and learn, focusing on our interests and passions. In the mornings we connect with our Pou and Ngahere in our school whare. We begin with a karakia (prayer) and end with a waiata (song). This helps us to really get to know ourselves and each other, and helps us with our learning and focus for the day. We are a very active class and enjoy getting outside for games or to work in our school farm and garden area. As a school, we are very fortunate to have our Kaiawhina Nan, who helps us learn about all things Te Ao Maori and teaches us lots of fun new waiata.
 
A little bit about our teacher Ms Nerina…
I am currently in a fixed term, maternity leave position. My teaching career spans over 20 years, teaching in Australia, United Arab Emirates and here in Aotearoa. I believe that all people deserve the opportunity to lead safe, healthy, and educationally creative lives by knowing who they are and where they come from. Incorporating Te Ao Maori me Tikanga Maori as well as celebrating other cultures within our school will help achieve this.
Outside of school, I am a co-coach for the Celtic Women’s Rugby team. I look forward to sharing my experience with our student’s.
 

 

Mt Somers – Te Kiekie (Y5-6)

Wendy Atkinson

Mt Somers (Te Kiekie) is a year 5-6 class. We work collaboratively with the Mt Winterslow (Opihako) class. We love being outdoors in our veggie garden, on the school farm or in the native bush area, and a lot of our learning is centred around this. Sport, art, having fun and helping each other with our learning, are also things we enjoy. Our Kaiawhina, Nan, is very important to us – she helps us learn about all things Te Ao Maori. Most mornings we connect with our pou and ngahere in our school whare. This helps us get to know ourselves and each other, and to get focussed for the day.
 
Our year six students have lots of leadership opportunities and take on many responsibilities around the school. The year fives also have some great opportunities to learn leadership skills.
Each year we have a class camp which we help plan and organise. This is often in November and is one of the highlights of the year. Every second year we usually have a whole school production which we help write, direct and produce. We take an active role in planning and decision making with everything we do and learn and can follow our interests and passions.
 
A little bit about our teacher Mrs A:
I was brought up on a sheep and beef farm in the Central Hawkes Bay hill country but have lived in Mid Canterbury for about 40 years. My husband and I live on a five acre lifestyle block just out of Rakaia where our two children grew up. My teaching career spans over 40 years, beginning in Te Anau in 1979 and leading me to Lauriston where I have been teaching in various different roles for just over 20 years. I have a passion for outdoor education, building enterprising students, writing, science and the performing arts.
 

 

He Tumuaki Te Kura Lauriston

Principal – Colin Brodie

Kia ora te whanau o kura Kotuku Lauriston,

 

My name is Colin Brodie and I am privileged and proud to be the Principal of Lauriston School and was also the Lead Principal of Opuke Kahui Ako 2019-2021- a group of 9 schools and 8 early childhood centres working together to benefit our children across Mid Canterbury. He tumuaki ahau mo te kura o Lauriston. He Kaiwhakahaere ahau mo te kahui Opuke.

 

I have been in education for 24 years; 9 years as a Principal. I have taught up and down the country, enjoying my roles of teacher, leader, mentor, artist and storyteller. I have held numerous leadership responsibilities across multiple domains; I often say I am rich for the experiences I have enjoyed over the years in my journey as a teacher, leader and learner.

 

There is much I could list but in the end I prefer to follow the whakatauki which states: Kaore te kūmara e korero mō tōna ake reka; The sweet potato does not talk of it’s sweetness.

 

My family is Maori, though I myself am Pakeha-of Scottish and English ancestry. E rua oku whanau- My whanau through marriage are-Tetahi no Ngati Kahungunu, Waitaha, Ngati Mamoe, Ngati Rapuwai me te Kai Tahu. Tetahi no Nga Puhi, Ngati Porou me te Nga Puhi. Ko au te papa.

 

I speak 3 languages outside of my native tongue English; Japanese, Tibetan and Maori. Language has played a profound role in my development as a leading learner; it has helped me unpack the potential of the human mind, to discover how best to bring out that potential in others. Language is kept alive inside an experience; inside a meaningful context. It is sustained and grown from practice, and helps us develop a greater understanding and respect for self and others. When we begin to see the curriculum domains as languages, then we can powerfully begin to understand how best to empower and teach our children, and to help them develop competencies which can be translated across multiple contexts and experiences.

 

Over the past 9 years I have developed an approach to teaching and leadership through Te Ao Maori that has been recognised both nationally and internationally for its success in raising student achievement for all students. Indeginous culture has tremendous value, contains a profound wisdom that for too long has been overlooked, yet is a cultural narrative and outlook that can make a profound difference in the lives of anyone willing to undertake the daring voyage of discovery that comes with learning a language and experiencing its culture.

 

While at Lauriston I have led our awesome teaching staff in pioneering our unique approach to teaching and learning through Huirapa; The Lauriston School assessment Framework.

 

In 2020 we developed a new holistic approach to assessment which takes into consideration the needs of the whole child and supports them in their development and growth as they progress through their schooling. Our students have agency and are developing greater efficacy in understanding how they learn and how they are progressing in relation to their learning goals. Huirapa; The Lauriston School assessment Framework provides whanau with a report on student achievement using a blend of NZC progressions-New Zealand Curriculum progressions-key competencies, and our Lauriston school values. The language used within our reporting reflects the learning cycle and reports on progress for children from seed to flower, while also drawing from the Globally Connected Curriculum of starting out to being able to predict with confidence.
Feedback from our families has been incredibly positive with the new model well received as a true indication of their children’s progress, while at the same time illustrating the excellent knowledge we have of the whole child. Both parent and child voice is included and helps form a true picture of each individual child, supporting and empowering them to achieve their potential; he maunga, he tangata-every person is a mountain, our school whakatauki.

 

Our parents enjoy access to HERO, our online reporting system which provides whanau with ‘real time’ reporting on student progress along with regular termly narratives which help illustrate their progress and achievement against the NZ curriculum. The modern landscape of learning has shifted much over the time when many parents themselves experienced school-HERO provides an opportunity for whanau to enjoy a window into how students learn today.

 

In 2022 we continue to review and re-design our local curriculum and teaching context as we explore the Globally Connected Curriculum and core competencies within it; an empowering model of contextualised learning to benefit today’s children; to help them cultivate resilience and innovation, thriving within our school environment and supported by our core values, ‘READY’ for success within an ever changing and complex world.

 

As one Year 5 Lauriston boy recently wrote to me:

 

“To Mr B, The best Principal.

 

Hei he manu ahau, hi pi ka rere me whakaute koe, whakangaonga, whakatutuki, whakatau, kia tika nga kowhiringa maau ka rite mo te angitu.

 

To be a young bird ready to fly, you need to be respectful, enterprising, achieving and determined. You need to make the correct choices for you, and then you are ready for success.”

 

I do not believe that I am the best Principal; however what I do know is that I always try to give my very best to the school community-the students, staff, and whanau- I serve.

 

Nga mihi nui