Childcare for up to two year olds
The Burrow at Oma Rāpeti is where you will find the youngest members of our whānau. Children in this room vary in age up to around about two years old. This upper age varies as children transition from this room on a readiness basis rather than an age basis.
Oma Rāpeti is licensed for 12 children under two, but The Burrow is operated with three teachers alongside ten children. Children attend for a minimum of three days per week in order to foster connection and relationships.
The kaiako (teachers) at Oma Rāpeti are influenced by the works of Emmi Pikler and Magda Gerber alongside other theorists and have specific training in this work. Our approach is calm and at a child's pace; giving children time to process happenings, participate and take the lead where appropriate. Our approach is play and care based.
As our practice with tamariki and whānau is based on relationships and the notion of respect, the building of strong relationships is imperative to the programme and underpins all our work. We believe in the value of building trusting relationships with consistent professional kaiako. One way we foster this notion is through a main caregiving system.
What is the Main Caregiver System?
If you are not familiar with this system it is where each tamaiti and whānau have two main care kaiako. This enables the kaiako and whānau to develop a strong healthy attachment and know that one of the two kaiako is consistently there for them all. This healthy attachment helps the tamaiti feel comfortable, secure and happy, which positively impacts on learning and development. This system also enables consistency in care and allows kaiako to be responsive to tamaiti needs.
We believe that there is valuable learning in the care moments, and therefore treasure these moments with the tamariki. The two main kaiako will be predominantly responsible for the tamaiti well-being including their care moments, alongside documentation of the tamaiti and communication with the whānau. Care moments include meal times, settling, nappy changing, and sleep times. As these main relationships are not exclusive the main kaiako will be supported by the other team members at times when the main carers may not be immediately available
We believe that these care moments/routines hold valuable learning opportunities and we embrace them. We acknowledge that it is through these care moments that strong relationships, emotional connections, and trust can form with children and whānau. In order for a healthy attachment to form, it is essential that these main relationships are predictable and stable but not exclusive.
Tamariki are invited in to partnership and they are given time to respond to requests and invitations. We model respectful relationships.
Responsive and Nurturing Childcare
Our approach is responsive to the tamariki needs and are met in a timely and predictable fashion as team members identify cues and learn about each individual child. The rhythm of the room is different for each individual tamiti as we follow their cues and needs. Our way of being with each tamaiti and whānau differs depending on their needs.
We embrace individual ways of being and personal care preferences are worked with. As our relationships deepen with whānau and children we learn more from them and adapt accordingly. We allow children to sleep when tired, eat when hungry, and play how they are innately programmed to play thus learn. We are able to respond in such a way because we learn children's unique ways of communicating and their subtle cues.
"The kind and caring companion I have in Charlie reflects your amazing work and the invaluable contribution you make to children’s development." - Charlie's Mum
"Would definitely recommend Oma Rāpeti to anyone looking for a caring, family oriented daycare." - Clare Fisher
"The staff are passionate about what they do and the philosophy is wonderful." - Liberty
Keen to see our Burrow in practice?
Check out this video from NZEI around quality care for infants and toddlers, here at our centre.