We aim to reflect the love and life of Jesus Christ in all that we do with tamariki and whānau at the Rainbow Early Learning Centre.

Christian principles and a commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi are applied in all decision making processes and are reflected in our policies and core values.


Our Core Values:        




Empowering tamariki, whānau, staff and volunteers to achieve personal excellence




Grace is reflected through being Jesus’ hands, feet and heart at the Rainbow and in the wider community




A sense of fun is encouraged in all that we do




A culture of respect for people, places and things




Love is displayed through our relationships and actions with tamariki, whānau, staff, volunteers and others in our community




We value honesty and integrity in our relationships and practice


Our Core Values are implemented through our local curriculum.

We believe that our staff is our greatest resource and we support them to develop their professional career and personal goals.

Mission Statement

To make a positive difference to families in Kaiapoi and the surrounding communities by providing high quality early childhood care and education which reflects the love and life of Christ




Our local curriculum is designed to ensure all tamariki at The Rainbow Early Learning Centre experience a rich and engaging curriculum.  It is a collaborative process of making informed decisions about planning, implementation, assessment, and evaluation, while always using Te Whāriki as a reference point.  Through discussion with kaiako, tamariki, whānau and our local community we have planned a curriculum that reflects who we are as a centre and what is valued.

We have divided our Local Curriculum into three areas: 

Ā tātou Karaitiana Rapunga Whakaaro/Our Christian Philosophy

Ako/Teaching & Learning




As a Centre that operates with a Christian philosophy, it is important to us that this is visible within The Rainbow.   We are committed to ensure that all are able to develop their wairuatanga (awareness of God) through the following ways:


We believe all tamariki are a taonga, a gift from God, and our philosophy is reflected in the way we treat our tamariki, their whānau and each other.  We model and support Christian values and dispositions such as love, grace, kindness, caring, respect and forgiveness to all in our community and encourage all to develop their knowledge and awareness of God and the gift of life and salvation He brings.


Whanaungatanga (loving, nurturing and responsive relationships) is fundamental to emotional well-being and fostering a sense of belonging.  We aim to ensure that all tamariki and their whānau are treated with aroha, grace and kindness; learning and development is fostered through whanaungatanga, as kaiako build their knowledge of children and their families.  Through collaboration, meaningful and active engagement with whānau, we support strong and resilient families through respectful partnerships.   Kotahitanga (unity) within the team is evident, and the way we respond to all who come into the centre reflects aroha a te Atua (God’s love).


We welcome tamariki and whānau from all walks of life, everyone has the right to belong and be actively heard.  We believe that ‘all are created in God’s image’ we practice inclusion, love and care, providing a place that is safe and free from racism, discrimination and bullying.  We aim to reduce barriers for all, tamariki and whānau alike, providing additional support as needed, and opportunities to belong, contribute and feel part of The Rainbow Whānau.


We believe in the unique place of Māori as Tangata Whenua and value whakawhanaungatanga (partnership), encouraging responsive and reciprocal relationships between The Rainbow and home.  At The Rainbow we are committed to upholding Te Tiriti o Waitangi, acknowledging the goals and aspirations Māori have for their taonga, and seeking meaningful connections between te ao Māori and our Christian philosophy.




We are kaiako (teachers), and we value tamariki learning in an environment that is stimulating, supportive and full of rich opportunities for holistic development.   We understand how tamariki learn and grow, and teaching and learning at The Rainbow is seen through the following ways:


We are committed to providing quality teaching and care; our permanent teaching team is made up of experienced teachers (registered and in-training), many of whom have a long connection to our centre.  Our kaiako engage in regular professional learning opportunities, further developing their knowledge to support our tamariki, whānau and each other.  We operate ratios that allow teachers to support children one-one, engage with small groups, and extend children in activities outside of the centre.


Intentional teaching occurs where kaiako deliberately provide activities, resources and provocations that enable children to think, process and gain skills and knowledge.  Priority learners are supported to engage with and alongside their peers in all areas of the curriculum.


Our kaiako plan individual and group experiences for children that support their holistic learning and development, through collaboration with children and their whānau through face-face interactions with kaiako, and via our online portfolio platform, Educa.  Plans for specific areas of learning and development that are valued at The Rainbow are developed, and include Communication, Physical Development, Social/Emotional Coaching, Literacy & Numeracy and Science. 


Children learn best when engaged in a responsive and fun play based environment.  Kaiako set up the environment based on their knowledge of how children learn.  We encourage tamariki to develop agency, taking responsibility and making their own decisions about how they spend their day.  To this end our routines and activities are flexible and not compulsory.  Children actively engage and extend their own learning, supported by responsive kaiako.


Our tamariki are supported to develop Kaitiakitanga, skills of guardianship over our natural environment.  Care for the pets and farm animals, building knowledge around sustainability and learning how to be responsible for the amazing world God has given us.


We encourage our tamariki to engage positively with one another in mixed age settings.  Opportunities for interactions across the age ranges is fostered.  Older and/or experienced children develop their leadership skills by caring for and teaching those less experienced, who in turn gain new knowledge and skills.


Physical activity and space to move is vital to our tamariki.  Our large and engaging outside spaces provide children with opportunities for active play, self-expression, fun with friends and engagement with the natural environment.  Tamariki make their own decisions about how and when they utilise the spaces, and there are areas for both busy group play and quiet engagement.  Children learn through play that is fun, stimulating and meaningful.




Ensuring that all tamariki and whānau feel they belong is important to us at The Rainbow.  That’s why successful transitions are valued by us; whether it’s becoming part of The Rainbow, moving from the nursery to the preschool, or heading off to school, it matters to us that these times are fully supportive of the needs of individual tamariki and their whānau:


We encourage our whānau to stay and play, to take as long as they like with all transitions, to contribute to the learning of all tamariki, and to support The Rainbow and be part of its life.  We value a sense of community, and the knowledge and insight whānau bring regarding their tamaiti.  Taking time getting to know one another builds trust and confidence that tamariki are loved and having fun as they learn.  Opportunities exist for others in our community to add their input and knowledge into the centre.


As a centre we believe in supporting our nursery children to transition to the preschool when they are ready, rather than at a set age.  We do through consultation with parents, and nursery kaiako supporting visits, helping them build relationships with the preschool teachers and children. Children are able to go back and forth between the spaces while feedback and reassurance is given to parents/whānau.


As tamariki begin their journey towards primary school, we engage in conversations with parents about the process, supporting them to make informed decisions.  Children are encouraged to participate in Discovery Time and Playball supporting pre-school skills.    Individualised school visits with a kaiako occur during their final weeks at The Rainbow.  Close relationships with kura in our community ensure a smooth transition that meets the needs of each child and their whānau.


Some people brought their babies to Jesus for him to place his hands on them. The disciples saw them and scolded them for doing so, but Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the children come to me and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.

Na ka kawea mai e ratou ki a ia a ratou tamariki nonohi, kia pa ai ia ki a ratou: otiia, no te kitenga o ana akonga, ka riria atu ratou.Otira ka karangatia atu ratou e Ihu ki a ia, ka mea ia, Tukua nga tamariki nonohi kia haere mai ki ahau, kaua hoki ratou e araia atu: no nga penei hoki te rangatiratanga o te Atua.

Luke 18:15-16

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