Diamond Harbour
Enrolment or waitlist enquiries
13 A Hunters Rd, Diamond Harbour,
RD 1, Lyttelton
Kindy webpagewww.kidsfirst.co.nz/diamondharbour
Kia Ora

Our Teachers

Rebecca Thomas
Head Teacher
Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (ECE)
Charis Sweeney
Bachelor of Science
Graduate Diploma of Teaching (ECE)
Annya Boyd
Graduate Diploma of Teaching and Learning (ECE)
Penny Julian
Bachelor of Teaching (ECE)
Gemma Veasey
Bachelor of Teaching (ECE)
Deb Rees
NZ Free Kindergarten Union Diploma
Kirsten Mackay
Bachelor of Arts
Graduate Diploma of Teaching (ECE)

Our Education Manager, or EM, is an important member of our teaching team.  Based at Kidsfirst Head Office, she is on site regularly to observe our programme, give us feedback and professional support, and encourage us toward continuous educational improvement. Please feel free to talk with her about your child’s kindergarten/centre experience..


Our EM is Keryn Barlow





Our Hours Are...

Session Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri
Full-day 8:30-16:00 8:30-16:00 8:30-16:00 8:30-16:00 8:30-16:00
Morning 8:30-12:30 8:30-12:30 8:30-12:30 8:30-12:30 8:30-12:30
Afternoon 12:30-16:00 12:30-16:00 12:30-16:00 12:30-16:00 12:30-16:00

We are able to talk to parents and caregivers most of the time, so please make an appointment if you'd like to do this. EMAIL US HERE











You will find our full day kindergarten in Diamond Harbour, overlooking the hills of Lyttelton Harbour. We feel very lucky to be in such a wonderful environment and our curriculum reflects how we learn, grow and explore our unique community. We climb trees, explore beaches, get muddy, we garden, visit Rāpaki - our local marae, watch the lambs, and explore the bushes, fields and tracks around the school. We learn through play, inquiry, and challenges - and we have lots of fun!


Ko te Ahu Patiki te maunga

Ko te Whakaraupō te moana

Ko Horomaka te mana

Ko matou te Kidsfirst o Te Waipapa

Haere mai, haere mai, haere mai!


Mount Herbert is our mountain

Lyttelton Harbour is our sea

We belong to Banks Peninsula

We are Kidsfirst Diamond Harbour

Welcome, welcome, welcome!


Kidsfirst Diamond Harbour opened in 2015 and was the first that Kidsfirst has built in many years, and so we took the opportunity to design and create a building made out of locally-sourced materials that would be as environmentally friendly as possible. The award-winning architecture is designed to lend itself to the natural landscape it sits on, with transitional learning environments created through a range of adaptable internal and external spaces.
Our environment has a focus on natural and renewable building materials:

  • Cedar cladding with no chemical treatment.
  • Low VOC (volatile organic compound) paints.
  • Formaldehyde-free plywood in the joinery.
  • The linoleum floor has a high recycled content (made of 97% raw materials).
  • Solar panels on the roof.
  • We are efficiently heated with underfloor heating and sheep’s wool-blend insulation in the walls.


The building is aiming to be net-zero energy, with any surplus that is generated being donated back to Diamond Harbour School. Normally the power goes back to the grid with money being earned for it, but this energy generation is a way for the kindergarten to give back to the school. There is also a multi-functional meeting room, shared by parents, whānau, staff and the Diamond Harbour community.


Diamond Harbour School is part of our learning community and we really value the relationships that we share. Regular visits between settings provide us with strong foundations to support transitions to school and offer highly valued opportunities for ako, mixed aged and reciprocal learning.


Whānau are always welcomed to grab a cup of tea, come and play and spend time with their tamariki. We know that a sense of belonging for our tamariki is further supported when they see that their whānau time and contributions are valued. We feel very lucky that we have whānau and visitors who regularly spend time with us to bake, read, bike, create and share their knowledge and skills.  Kanohi-ki-te-kanohi, face-to-face relationships are extremely valuable to us here and these happen daily in order to respond to and support the learning and needs of our tamariki.



Infants, toddlers and their families are warmly welcomed into their own, calm place by our fully qualified teachers. With great child: teacher ratios and a small overall group size, infants and toddlers can receive the individual attention they need. Our teachers understand the special ways of our youngest children and respect the rhythm and needs of each child.


Children can explore, independently move through, and find wonder in our thoughtfully created inside and outside spaces. Through teacher-guided play, they develop skills to co-operate with others and express their emotions in peaceful ways. As valued members of our kindergarten community our tamariki meet up with their bigger friends regularly, creating plenty of opportunities for ako- shared learning. 



In the Kahikatea Room, we aspire to follow our children’s lead and build on their interests, inspiring learning through the use of beautiful spaces and natural resources. We nurture the individual creativity of ngā tamariki, placing value on their play and their contributions to the curriculum.


Group and whānau times provide opportunities for discussions, planning and decision making. Tamariki are given time to reflect on what they already know, to wonder about what might happen next or why something went a certain way. Small and whole group times also help kaiako (teachers) to group children’s ideas together and promote further inquiry-based research, investigation and critical thinking.      


The programme planning is flexible, with a focus on both individual/ project learning, and social competency that promotes positive relationships where children take responsibility for their own actions.


Our kaiako are constantly evaluating our programme to ensure Te Whāriki (The New Zealand Curriculum for Early Childhood 2017) learning outcomes are being met and a positive difference is being made in children’s learning and development.




We foster meaningful and reciprocal relationships with:

-tamariki and whanau

-our local and wider communities

-Diamond Harbour school

-our local iwi.

-Extended learning communities

We will support, nurture and guide one another.



Our kindergarten is a place of welcome and support.

Our individual mana is nurtured and protected.   

Our social competency strategies support a place of wellbeing and belonging.



Teaching and learning is lifelong

There are shared opportunities for all teaching and learning

The roles of teacher, learner and leader are interchangeable.

Individual contributions, knowledge and strengths are valued.

Relationships are reciprocal and responsive.



We work collaboratively in order to develop a shared sense of purpose.

We work in partnership with whānau as we value their contributions and consultation.

We reflect the Kidsfirst values; whānau, engagement, inspiring, passionate, proud.



We foster and support lifelong sustainable practices.

We treasure the stories and history of our land.



Our kindergarten operates Monday to Friday, from 8.30am – 4.00pm – and through the term breaks. 

We would recommend that you enrol for at least two days per week – building up to five days.  This gives our teachers time to really get to know your child and gives consistency around supporting their learning.  It’s hard for our teachers to do this with just a few hours here and there.


Come in any time – we’ll show you around and make you welcome!



Yes! We're still operating during the traditional term breaks, so your child can still come to us during this time.


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