The Principles of Te Whaariki Essay

The Principles of Te Whaariki Essay

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Te Whāriki is a curriculum document that was released by the Ministry of Education in 1996 to “provide a curriculum framework that will form the basic for consistent curriculum and programme in early childhood centres” (Ministry of Education p.10). This means that now early childhood centres across Aotearoa will have the information and standards to make sure children grow and learn in a safe and nurturing environment. Joce Nuttall’s research has shown that the curriculum is made up of three parts: The overt curriculum which is the curriculum that is planned by the teachers, the hidden curriculum is made up of the children’s experiences which are unplanned and undocumented by the teachers, and the null curriculum includes any programme content that is systematically excluded from the children’s experience.

Te Whāriki has four principles that relate to the five strands. The first is Empowerment- Whakamana which is defined by the Ministry of Education as “curriculum which empowers the child to learn and grow”. Empowerment is connected to the theory of B. F. Skinner (1904-1990) about children learning through positive reinforcement. Skinner’s theory showed that a child’s behaviour was likely to be repeated if the child receives positive encouragement and rewards like when a child washes his hands and then receives a stamp and compliments every time this is done which is promoting Te Whāriki strand well-being- Mana Atua strand, goal 1: “Children experience an environment where their health is promoted” (Ministry of Education, p.48).but after a while the child will then wash their hands by their-self even without a stamp afterwards so through Empowerment this child learnt how to self-care and self-help. Implications that exist when...


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...02). Negotiating the meaning of ‘curriculum’: Can we awaken the ‘sleeping beauty’? Early Education, 28, 5-10.

Nuttall, J. (2003). Weaving Te Whāriki: Aotearoa New Zealand’s Early Childhood Curriculum Document in Theory and Practice. Wellington, New Zealand: Printlink

Richie, J. (1999). The use of te reo Māori in early childhood centres. Early Education, 20, 13-21.

The Open Polytechnic of New Zealand. (2008). The Open Polytechnic of New Zealand- Diploma of Teaching- (Early Childhood Education. Te Matauranga mo nga Kohungahunga I Roto I nga marautanga/ Te Whāriki: Early Childhood Curriculum and Early Childhood Education. Wellington, New Zealand: Author

Wright, L. (2003). The core ingredients: Embeddedness, relationships, and identity as components of home-based curriculum, Paper presented at Eighth Early Childhood Convention: Palmerston North, New Zealand.

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