GLENFIELD EARLY LEARNING CENTRE STAFF

PAULA TRA

Kia ora – my name is Paula Tra and I’m very proud to say that I work for the families of GELC. I live in Glenfield with my lovely hubby Binh and our 3 children, Kimy, Ha-Ly and Lia-Lai. While my babies are adults now with only the youngest still at high school, I have always deeply appreciated the importance, joy and pure fun of the preschool years.
I am lucky to have had a connection with the GELC since my youngest daughter came here as a pre-schooler many moons ago. Back then, as a full-time Mummy, I was asked to relieve when teachers were absent – I enjoyed it so much that I did my training and returned to GELC in 2008 as a fully-qualified teacher and I have been here ever since!
I really love the sense of community and the warm, welcoming and respectful culture that GELC has. Being a ‘mixed-age’ centre allows siblings to grow and learn together which I see as a wonderful advantage for children, their families and the teaching team. I love that GELC is a place of learning for all – I have learned so much here, including just how much more there is to learn.

NICK BATLEY

Kia ora. My name is Nick Batley. I have been a fully qualified early childhood teacher for 7 years but you could say have always been teaching in some way all my life. I am a big believer in allowing children to be free in their play and let them discover their strengths and passions in life at their own pace. I am a teacher that likes to be actively involved in the children’s learning and this is done by what I think it the most crucial and important part of being a teacher, building a strong and positive relationship with the children, parents, teachers, and community.

Over my career I have learnt and gain many skills in creating and designing learning environments for children where they can develop the tools needed as they adventure through their learning educational journey.

Overall, I am someone that is passionate about teaching and seeing children learn and grow. I like to have fun, use humour and just have a good time all round.

JOANNE CASS

I am a fully registered teacher who graduated from AUT in 2011. I have been a teacher at GELC for 5 years and one of my favourite parts of working here is the strong sense of community.

Being a part of the learning journey for a child over several years and then having their younger siblings join us is incredibly special. My favourite learning experiences to set up are ones that encourage the children and I to ask ourselves “what”, “how” and “why”.

I also enjoy baking and sometimes plan baking activities for the children.

ALMIRA MARTINEZ

Kia Ora, my name is Almira Marie Martinez. I was born and raised in The Philippines and moved here in Aotearoa when I was 14 years old.

I have been with Glenfield Early Learning Centre since 2015 after finishing my studies at Auckland University Of Technology doing Bachelor of Early Childhood Education.

I love working at G.E.L.C because it is a non-profit organisation that caters for mix-age.

HOLLY STEVENS

Kia ora, my name is Holly and I am so happy to be working as part of an amazing team of kaiako here at the Glenfield Early Learning Centre. Making connections and building relationships that are authentic, respectful, reciprocal and responsive is extremely important to me, both in my work and my personal life. I am to communicate openly with tamariki, parents and whanau, we can build a strong sense of trust and respect between us. I am passionate about music and enjoy dancing, playing musical instruments such as the piano, guitar, ukulele and singing. I am looking forward to fostering children’s interests in these and other areas. I will do my best to listen and learn from our tamariki and to support their own thoughts, feelings, interests, and learning dispositions. Important, I consider myself both a learner and a teacher.

DOLE LEDESMA

Hello! I’m Dole Ledesma, born and grew up in the Philippines prior to migrating here in Auckland, New Zealand. Previously, I was a preschool teacher from an international school for almost 11 years in the Philippines.

I have a Bachelors Degree in Psychology and completed a Cognate Course in Elementary Education. Currently, I’m completing a Graduate Diploma in Teaching, Early Childhood Education to further strengthen my knowledge in Te Whariki — New Zealand’s Early Childhood Curriculum.

Being with children is a source of happiness for me, as I consider them as genuine, funny and inspiring little people. They say that children learn from their teacher and that’s true, but I would say that sometimes, “it’s the other way around”. =)