ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary Education

ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary EducationLead advisor on early childhood care and education 
National membership 

Publisher of the New Zealand-International Research in Early Childhood Journal


Early Childhood Alert January 2020

The January "Early Childhood Alert' newspaper edition is available to print and read at your leisure.

It's bright, newsy, and informative - perfect for keeping as a resource and sharing with others.  You are welcome to print copies to leave in your staff room for others. 

To download a copy of the newspaper edition click here.

For anyone who hasn't got time right now to view the ECE newspaper, below is just a quick snapshot of what's up, along with a selection of info relevant to this time of year.


1. Starting Back After the Holidays

First days back at work - a reminder for all members that this delightful ECE article is online for you. It  will help your team and children ease back into the swing of things with smiles.


2. NEWS:  Regulations Change for teacher-led ECE Centres

The Minister of Education has pushed through a regulation change to allow teachers who are primary trained to be a ‘person responsible’ in teacher-led ECE centres.  

Will this mean that centres can now have no early childhood qualified person working on the premises?  What about the minimum 50% ECE Qualified Staff requirement? 

Will this assist the teacher shortage and help the pay parity for teachers campaign?  


3. NEWS: The Recruitment of Overseas ECE Qualified Teachers is Funded but what About Retaining Our local Teacher Talent?

Government funding the costs of recruiting foreign labour to staff NZ early childhood centres is so cool.  But what does it really indicate? 


4. New Member Joining Special Offer 

Do you have a password for member login? If not, then go to the JOIN US page.  Apply the coupon code newmember2020 for a 10% discount on either the individual or ECE organisation membership. This offer expires on 30 January.


5. Free Job Adverts Can Work

Post job adverts, questions and comments on the Readers' Posts page at

Before Christmas an advert for teachers at one early childhood service received more than 4,500 views! 


6. Training Scholarships and Financial Assistance

Would you like to have a $10,000, $15,000 or $30,000 allowance for training to be an early childhood teacher in NZ plus course fees paid? Teach NZ applications close very soon.

Are you male and intending to study for a recognised ECE teaching qualification - applications are open for a Men in ECE Award.


7. Teaching Children to take Care in the Sun 

Opportunities to teach and support children’s understandings of sun protection can arise during any activity and conversation. Capture spontaneous moments for teaching, supporting children’s interest, and remember to follow this up. Here’s one example:

Quinn and a few of his friends were interested in space and rocket ships. They told their teacher that they were going to go in a rocket to “out of space” as Quinn calls it. She asked where they were going to visit and they told her the sun. She asked what they would need for their trip and Quinn said: “Our sunhats of course”. At home he later asked what number sunblock he would need. We had a big discussion on how the sun generates too much sun for us to go near and that even from earth we have to be really careful with exposure. He’s gone from a reluctant sunblock wearer to a very conscientious one.

As well you can plan to discuss specific messages about sun protection and being safe in the sun. Here are some ideas for planned discussions:

  • Look at interesting markings such as birthmarks, freckles, moles and lines. Talk about the differences in people’s skins. Talk about the skin on our faces and how the sun changes our skin and causes ageing. Comparisons with fruit or animal skins could be made.
  • Use picture books, stories and poems as a starting point to talk about hats and sunglasses and the protection they offer.
  • Count how many children or people will fit into the shade of a particular tree. Count again at different times of the day and discuss how this changes.

Five Little Children
Five little children playing in the sun,
The first one said "This is fun.”
The second one said “Please take care.”
The third one said “Let's put on sunscreen.”
The fourth one said “Our hats we must wear.”
The fifth one said “We’re the cool kids here”.


8. Chinese New Year - Happy New Year!  新年快乐 (xīn nián kuài lè)

Many Chinese children, families and people with Chinese ancestry live in New Zealand.

The Chinese New Year is a major celebration to include in the early childhood curriculum and mark in our ECE services for all children and adults. There are many fun ways to incorporate the festivities and provide excellent learning and teaching opportunities for all children and adults. 

It's also important for teachers and educators to learn about the traditions and practices today for understanding and supporting children's cultural and family backgrounds. 

From 25 January and for 15 consecutive days (with the first 3 being most important) it is time to welcome in the year of the rat. 


9. Waitangi Day 

Are you looking for different activity ideas and inspiration for marking Waitangi Day?


10. Tips for Free and Low-Budget Promotion for ECE Services 

My ECE website for parents
Request a listing on My ECE if your service has not already been recommended - go to My Early Childhood Education   
Parent to parent recommendations are what brings most business. Word of mouth is free!  To boost your service's rating, suggest to parents to post reviews at

Effective marketing ideas on a low budget
Are you doing the right kinds of marketing?  Learn what actually works for early childhood services that are successful. See the ECE collection of marketing tips and strategies - access the page here (available to ECE service members)  


11. Induction and Mentoring of Teachers

What is involved?  How to set up a folder and what to put in - there is no need to buy a book on how to do this!   


12. Research: Supporting Parents to use Schema Theory to Understand and Manage Children's Challenging Behaviour

Challenging behaviour is any behaviour that challenges the expectations of professionals, teachers, parents and carers.

Teachers of young children often find themselves discussing with parents ways to manage their children’s challenging behaviours in the home.

The motivation for this research was to find an effective way to share schema theory, an approach that had proved helpful for managing the challenging behaviour of Special Educational Needs and Disabilities children, with parents. The study is published in the NZ-International Research in ECE Journal, 2019 edition, available for free access to ChildForum members and library subscribers. 


13.  Can't Wait until the next ECE Operational Funding Payment on 2nd March?

This is an advert for NZ Childcare Finance. 

NZ Childcare Finance is available to help ease and smooth your cashflow by bringing forward your next bulk funding payment.We lend up to 60% of your average last 3 bulk funding payments. 24 hour approval process – guaranteed. Does not affect existing bank arrangements. No property security. No financial accounts. No fixed term contracts – you choose when to use us. You only pay when you use our services. NZ Childcare Finance services does not affect any of your current banking and finance arrangements. There are certain conditions to meet but NZ Childcare Finance has a record of approving at least 98% of all applications.

Lena Thomson at NZ Childcare Finance has personally owned and operated 8 childcare centres, and understands what service providers go through each day. Lena welcomes ECE services to contact her personally and confidentially, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone 0800 777-559.


New email address?  Let us know if your email address has changed.   

You can reset your password in the login box.  Or contact us: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and ask for a password reset.

Not a member? If you don't hold a current membership go to our website at to join or to renew.

Follow our Facebook page: 

Take out a membership



We are confident you will be delighted to discover and experience the benefits of membership.

Would you like to know more? 

Membership Options


Who is this for?
Ideal for parents, students, teachers, researchers, teacher educators, policy analysts and children's specialists.
$98.00 12 months from the date of joining
or for students $60.00 short-term 6 month access.
Your own personal username and password.

ECE Service 
Group Membership

Who is this for?
A service that has licenced one or more ECE services with the Ministry of Education (including home-based, parent, and teacher-led).
Starting from $198.00. Provides 12 months membership from the date of joining.
A shared username and password for your service group.

NZ-International Research in
ECE Journal Subscription

Who is this for?
Libraries, universities, polytechnics and organisations wishing to have access to the NZIRECE published journal and its articles.
$150.00 annual renewable in November each year.
A username and password or IP address access.