If you have a passion for teaching young children and are looking to make a living from it, you may want to know how to become a kindergarten teacher in New Zealand. The demand for qualified teachers is very high, both here in New Zealand and overseas. You can study at the Auckland University of Technology, which is one of the top 50 universities in the world in the field of education. The course provides students with a broad understanding of early childhood and teaches them to be effective educators in 21st-century settings. The programme also includes three practicum placements in early childhood centres.


Te Whariki

The philosophy behind Te Whariki, the kindergarten curriculum for New Zealand children, is to create a learning environment that is relevant to children’s progress. As such, teachers need to see children as individuals and take into account the influences on their lives. They also have to make sure that the learning they are doing is a good foundation for future learning.

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The curriculum promotes a sense of belonging in the classroom. Children should have the opportunity to form social bonds with their teachers and whanau, and they should be able to celebrate their cultural background. The curriculum also emphasizes citizenship and participation, and the importance of fostering respect for diverse practices.


Te Paetahi Akoranga Bachelor of Teaching

The Te Paetahi Akorranga Bachelor of Teaching programme is New Zealand’s fastest-growing undergraduate programme, with nearly 3,000 graduates enrolled every year. If you’re interested in a career in teaching or learning, this is the programme for you. The programme combines classroom and online study, with a practical, hands-on approach to learning and teaching.

The degree program prepares graduates to teach in the New Zealand school system as beginning teachers. It includes courses that build students’ professional skills and knowledge of child development and the national early childhood curriculum. In addition, students will develop an appreciation for Matauranga Maori knowledge and a Maori worldview.

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Overseas qualifications required

If you are interested in becoming a kindergarten teacher in New Zealand, you need to obtain the relevant qualifications and experience. New Zealand requires that you have at least two years of experience in early childhood education. You must also be a registered teacher or be licensed. If you have any overseas qualifications, you must have them assessed by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA). The qualifications you hold must be equivalent to the Bachelor of Teaching (ECE) or Diploma of Teaching (ECE) programs.

Teachers who have lived abroad for 12 consecutive months are also required to submit a certified copy of a criminal record check. The certificate must be issued by the national police service of the country in which they lived, and it must cover all of their time living in that country. You can find out more about this process on the How to register page.

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Pay for early childhood teachers in New Zealand

New early childhood teachers will receive a 9.6% pay increase from July 2019. This is an important step in achieving equal pay scales for all qualified teachers. The Government has allocated $151.1 million over four years to pay early childhood teachers more in line with the starting pay rate for kindergarten teachers. The new pay scale will cover Steps 1 to 6 of the 11-step pay scale for kindergarten teachers.

As a result of the ECE Pay Parity Scheme, employers and service providers are required to pay their teachers at the same rate. This scheme covers teachers working in registered services, hospital-based services, or education and care services. However, it excludes home-based services and whanau-led kohanga reo. There are three key factors for determining pay for early childhood teachers.