Research shows that children who are involved in quality early childhood education (ECE) benefit in many ways, and that these benefits also extend to their family/whānau and the wider community. Taking part in ECE builds a strong foundation for your child’s ongoing education, learning and development. Children learn lots of new skills by participating in ECE, building on the skills they learn at home and from their families/whānau.
What ages does Nature’s Point cater for?
We cater for children aged from 3 months to six years.
What are the operating hours?
Our operating hours are from 7.00 am to 6.00 pm, Monday to Friday all year round. We’re not open on weekends or public holidays
Do the children receive meals?
Yes, we do provide meals. We’re also a nut free centre and promote healthy eating habits. A nutritious diet is vital for a child’s development, hence we ensure that we guide and teach children about healthy eating habits during meal times. Children love to eat together, so the meal times at a centre are always fun!
Are nappies provided for children who need them?
No, if your child requires nappies then you will need to provide a sufficient supply for the time that your child will be spending at Nature’s Point
How do I find out more about the centre?
You can find out more by visiting that centre – we welcome inquiries at any time
How do I enroll at Nature’s Point Childcare?
When you choose to enroll at Natures Point, we’ll support you every step of the way. Our Centre Manager will invite you to take a tour of the centre first so you can see where your child will be cared for and to ensure you are comfortable with your decision. You will then be provided with an enrollment pack that contains everything you need to know about the centre, your child’s routine and a quote for your weekly fees. We encourage you to ask as many questions as you like – we are committed to providing open, honest communication that supports your decision.
Can I enroll online?
We don’t offer online enrollment because it’s so important for families to see the centre first-hand. A tour is your chance to meet the staff and discuss your needs one-on-one with our Centre Manager. They’ll then be able to help with your enrollment and settling in your child.
How is waiting list managed?
If there are no vacancies at the centre, you may want to join our centres’ waiting list. The list is regularly reviewed by our manager. You’ll be contacted if a place becomes available. You can take yourself off the waitlist by contacting the centre anytime you wish.
How much does it cost to send my child to a Natures Point?
Daily fees vary from depending on how many days your child is in care, and what age they are. You may also be eligible for work and income subsidies that will make a difference to your fees. Talk to the centre manager for a quote and to know more about WINZ subsidy you may qualify for, visit www.workandincome.govt.nz or call them on 0800 559 009.
How many free ECE hours are you providing?
At Nature’s Point we provide 20 ECE free hours for 4 hour sessions.
CHILDREN WHO ARE 3 OR 4 YEARS OLD: If your child is 3 or 4 years and you opt into the government funded “20 hours ECE” scheme then your child’s first 20 hours of attendance for the week at our centre is free. This funding is provided by the government and is available for everyone, regardless of your family income. When your child starts Nature’s Point you can complete an Attestation Form to claim your 20 Hours Free.
CHILDREN WHO ARE 2.5 YEARS OLD: We are committed to increasing participation in quality Early Childhood Education services by making sure our centre is affordable for everyone.If your child is 2.5 years and they attend our centre, we charge affordable fees. Please talk to our centre manager for details. Once your child turns 3, you will need to opt into the government funded 20 Hours ECE scheme to continue to receive up to 20 hours free attendance.
How does the 20 hours ECE funding work for me?
You do not need to use all of your “20 Hours ECE” that you access under the government funded scheme (only available for 3 and 4 year old children), at one early childhood centre.You may choose to only use some of your “20 Hours ECE”. You will be asked to sign an attestation form to say how you want to use your “20 Hours ECE”. If all of your child’s hours of attendance at Nature’s Point are covered by your “20 Hours ECE”, then their attendance will be at no cost.If some of your child’s hours of attendance at Nature’s Point are not covered by your “20 Hours ECE”, then a fee will be charged for these hours. Please contact our centre for further information on how you can use your 20 Hours Early Childhood Education.
What government benefits are available to families?
Work and Income may be able to help with assistance towards childcare costs. Just speak to WINZ to find out if you are eligible for subsidies and to what amount.
Do I still need to pay for a scheduled day if my child is sick? / What happens when we go on holidays?
Like most centres, normal fees apply for all absences (including Public Holidays) that fall on a usual day of attendance unless the family provides written consent two weeks in advance to apply 50 per cent discount on the full fee. Holiday discount is available for up to two weeks of care per financial year. Under exceptional circumstances, holiday discount may be applied outside these requirements at the discretion of the Centre Manager. Fee payments must be up to date to receive holiday discount.
What happens if my scheduled day falls on a public holiday?
Like most early learning centres, Nature’s Point closes for public holidays. If your scheduled day falls on a public holiday, we still need to charge to cover staff costs. This is a sector-standard practice. Early learning professionals are entitled to be paid on public holidays as in other industries.
What is the Child Care Assistance (CCA)?
The CCA is a subsidy provided by Work and Income. Parents or guardians may be able to get assistance if:
You’re the main caregiver of the child, and
Your family is on a low or middle income, and
You’re a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident, and
Your child has at least three hours of care of a week.
There are different conditions and requirements that apply before assistance can be given. What childcare assistance is available to you will depend on your individual situation and the type of care your child is enroll for. WINZ also has a handy online application form. This is available on the Working for Families website www.workingforfamilies.govt.nz.
What is TeWhāriki?
TeWhāriki is part of the New Zealand Government’s National Quality Framework for early childhood education and care. It describes the principles, practices and outcomes essential to young children’s learning from birth to five years of age, as well as their transition to school. It seeks for children ‘to grow as competent and confident learners and communicators, healthy in mind, body and spirit, and secure in their sense of belonging and in the knowledge that they make a valued contribution to society.’The framework has a strong emphasis on play-based learning, recognising the importance of communication and language (including early literacy and numeracy) and social and emotional development. It is made up of four principals and five strands which are interweaved. The five strands are:
Well-being – ManaAtua
Belonging – ManaWhenua
Contribution – ManaTangata
Communication – Mana Reo
Exploration – ManaAotūroa
There are four foundation principles for the early childhood curriculum:
Empowerment – Whakamana
Holistic development – Kotahitanga
Family and community – Whānau tangata
Relationships – Ngāhononga
What is the Education Review Office (ERO)?
The Education Review Office (ERO) is the government department that reviews schools and early childhood services in New Zealand. ERO’s reports document the findings of a school or service’s education review and provide information for parents, schools, early childhood services and communities. Each report comments on a school or service’s individual situation, its strengths and, if necessary, next steps for development.
What support is available for children with additional needs?
Natures Point offers facilities and support for children with additional needs – from minor allergies to greater care needs such as physical or learning disabilities and behavioural issues.
We are committed to ensuring all children, regardless of life circumstance, have access to and inclusion in early learning in New Zealand.Our centre works to provide targeted programs and support for children based on their individual needs. By creating positive early learning environments tailored to individual needs, we’re providing the best possible opportunity for children to fulfil their potential. We want to specifically assist those children who face additional challenges.
Please speak with the centre manager about how we can work together to manage your child’s specific needs.
What do I need to pack in my child's bag?
When you start at Natures Point, you’ll be provided with a list detailing exactly what you need to pack, depending on your specific requirements and your child’s age. Consider packing:
A sun safe hat which covers your child’s face, neck and ears
Gumboots for our regular excursions in the bush
Change of clothes (when involved with hands-on play-based learning, your child may get a little messy!)
Comfort item (if required), such as a toy or blanket
Nappies (if your child is still on nappies)
Any medications – please give these to centre staff to manage directly.