MANZ Professional Events

Professional events for teachers and parents involved in Montessori centres and schools in New Zealand. You will find information below to register for these events in 2016.

MANZ Conference 2016
9 - 11 July, 2015

This is shaping up to be an exciting conference with both international and domestic speakers. Further details will be up soon but in the mean time mark these dates on your calendars.

Montessori Outdoors in 2016
Montessori Near You Workshop

For teachers and centres who feel their outdoor programmes are not yet fully evolved or need refreshing, this one-day workshop will focus on bringing Montessori culture outside, using the power of the prepared environment, the liberty of the child, and the skilful support of the teacher/guide.

This is an opportunity to closely examine and work through the issues of establishing, maintaining and developing YOUR Montessori programme in the outdoors. You will look at the possibilities offered by the outdoors, while critically examining the unique opportunities and limitations of YOUR outdoor area. You will make decisions about which activities will best meet the needs of your community right now.

You will develop an “always on,” basic programme and you will explore possibilities for future development. You will plan with team members how to share responsibilities, maintain consistencies and develop a culture outside which complements your already established culture inside. You will go home with plans for your “first steps” as well as ideas for future developments.

As you can tell, this workshop is designed for school TEAMS. Effective implementation requires that those who are responsible for delivering the lessons and maintaining the culture outside, be responsible for the analysis, decision making and creation of the programme from the start.

This workshop will be led by Pam Shand, who offered the Montessori Near You series in 2014.

If your centre is interested in hosting this workshop either between September to late November, 2015 or February – April 2016 please be in touch Host centres received one free workshop registration.

When we have some dates and venues, the workshop will be opened for registrations with the aim of over 20 teachers per workshop.

Pattern Writing Poetry and Beyond + From Constructive Triangles to Pythagoras, May 2016

Supporting Pattern Writing Poetry and Beyond
From Constructive Triangles to Pythagoras
Montessori May 15-16 and May 21-22, 2016

A set of two weekend workshops have been organised with Carla Foster, director of training from the Montessori Centre of New England for 2016.

Workshop One: Pattern Writing , Poetry and Beyond
Two days for 3-12
This workshop presents many lessons and activities that explore creative writing in the age groups 3-12. We look at how the oral storytelling and materials in the classroom can be used as models for writing. The history of literary genres forms the backdrop for looking at age-appropriate ways to help the children express themselves through the written word.

Workshop Two: From constructive triangles to the theorem of Pythagoras
Two days for 3-12
This workshop explores some of the Montessori geometry materials and the importance of geometry through both the first and the second plane of development. The participants will learn the construction techniques used to design the constructive triangles. We will also look at many of the important relationships between the triangles and how the work with constructive triangles has many layers up through the planes. We will deepen our understanding of the relationships between the different geometry materials and how this aids the child in developing reason, logic and creativity. Stories of geometry will be woven in throughout the workshop.

Carla says ‘These workshops can also be adapted if there are more specific things teachers would like.’ If you have some suggestions – email

More details will be sent by the end of 2015 about costs and venues.

Carla will also lead two public lectures for parents, with at least one of these events in Auckland.

Observation Workshop Series, Auckland in 2016 ? 

Observation Workshop Series
Wednesday July 22 through to Wednesday September 23, 2015
Venue: Montessori @ Otari Preschool, 166 Wilton Rd, Wilton, Wellington

The proposed workshops on observation that were planned for Wellington have been cancelled, however if there is enough interest we can consider running it in Auckland in early 2016. If you would be interested in attending the 10 week workshop series please be in touch. It may be possible to offer some of the workshop sessions by Skype. Let us know

This is the proposed outline of the workshops which are planned to run over 10 weeks.

Observation is an essential tool for linking Montessori philosophy and teaching practice. It enables the Montessori teachers to gather data and provide evidence for teaching as inquiry or self-review. In 2013 Connie Black introduced the idea of work curves to many teachers at the MANZ Conference and Amy Kirkham and Carol Potts revisited observation again later that year. Now you have the opportunity to become more familiar with observing, creating and using work curves to guide your teaching practice.

Workshop Series

This workshop series runs over ten weeks and will not take you away from your classroom for long. The workshop series involves an initial two hour workshop and four one hour follow-up meetings  plus classroom observations over the term. Online support will also be provided by Krista and your fellow ‘observers’, so you can check in, ask questions and get support.  During this observation  workshop you will be observing the same child for 10 weeks.

Wednesday July 22, 4.30-6.30pm
Week One Workshop: The workshop starts with a two hour meeting to examine what a work curve is, what it can tell us about a child and how this can be of practical benefit. Krista will bring some collected data which you will use to practice making work curves during this session, so that everyone is confident of being able to get started when they get back to their class. All the required paperwork and templates - data collection sheets, blank work curves etc will be provided. You will leave with observation homework to complete – to observe one child and prepare a work curve. 
Wednesday July 29, 4.30-5.30pm
Week Two Meeting: The group will meet again after a week’s observation. Each participant will have a work curve for the group to analyse and to brainstorm together what you can do to follow the interests of that child. You will leave with a follow-up lesson plan. Krista will also help you find strategies for observing ‘non-stop’ while being active presenters in your classroom.
Week Three Classroom observation:  You will carry out the lessons in your plan, observe your child and record outcomes
Wednesday August 12, 4.30-5.30pm
Week Four Meeting: You will share feedback from your lesson plan and your observations, ask any questions to make sure you are on the right ‘track’.
Week Five Classroom observation: Observe your child again and prepare a new work curve.
Wednesday August 26, 4.30-5.30pm 
Week Six Meeting
: Bring your next work curve and get help from Krista and the group in analysing and developing a new follow-up plan.  Krista will introduce how to write a developmental overview of the child and share example (two hour meeting).
Week Seven-Nine Classroom observation: You will spend the next three weeks observing your child, preparing work curves and follow-up plans. 
Wednesday September 23, 4.30-6pm 
Week 10 Meeting
: You will write a developmental review to share with the group and reflect on your use of observation and work curves as data-gathering tools and have a shared afternoon tea to celebrate the end of the workshop.

Workshop leader

Krista Kerr is a lead teacher in a three-six class at Wa Ora Montessori Preschool. She isthe only New Zealander to have completed the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) Post Diploma Course at the Maria Montessori Institute in London. This whole year course focuses on the scientific observation of children using techniques developed by Dr Maria Montessori, using observation to explore Montessori theory and to reflect on how it may be put into practice. 

During the course Krista observed two children over an eight month period. Krista had been supporting her colleagues at Wa Ora Montessori to use observation as a tool and she is now ready too share with a wider group of teachers from other Montessori centres.











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