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Little Pukeko's Teachers

An Adventure Everyday

Heather Thacker

Heather Thacker

Owner/Licensee
Diploma in Teaching (Primary)
Fully Registered 
 
Hi my name is Heather Thacker.  I am a qualified primary teacher having been involved in teaching in the Franklin area for a very long time!  Feeling the need for a change, I opened Prickly Hedgehog Pre-School in 2001 and have since thoroughly enjoyed my journey in early childhood education.  
 
I have 2 children and 3 grandchildren who are a big part of my life.  I also enjoy holidaying, keeping fit and active, and relaxing at the beach.  
Manisha Hari

Manisha Hari

Centre Manager
Diploma in Teaching (ECE)
Fully Registered Teacher
Comprehensive First Aid Certificate
 
Hi my name is Manisha Hari. I have been working in the early childhood sector for over 14 years and been with Pukekohe Preschools since then!  I love working in this environment and working alongside such a fantastic team.  What I love about this career is that not a day goes by where you don't laugh and or have fun, it's such a rewarding job.  
 
I am married and have a daughter and a son who I enjoy spending my weekends with.  I love going out for dinners and love food.  My favourite is Yum Char.  I also enjoy watching my husband play hockey and supporting the Warriors!    
 
 
Ashley Knee

Ashley Knee

Teacher
Diploma in Teaching (ECE)
Fully Registered
Comprehensive First Aid Certificate
 
 
Hi, I have been working in ECE since 2004, and been working for Pukekohe Preschools since 2011.  
I'm married and live in Pukekohe with our dog Stella.  In our spare time we like to travel, be at the beach, binge watch t.v series and mostly spend time with the family!  I also love to read.
Gipsy Witehira

Gipsy Witehira

Acting Manager/Supervisor/Teacher
Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood)
Fully Registered
 
Kia Ora, My name is Gipsy Witehira.  I have worked in Early Childhood for the past 10 years, I have a daughter Kaia who is 2 years old and I think being a mum is awesome!  My goal in life is to help grow happy confident children who value and love learning.
Alisha Melville

Alisha Melville

Supervisor
Bachelor of Early Childhood Education
Fully Registered
Comprehensive First Aid Certificate
 
I have been working at Little Pukeko's Pre-School for the past 9 years.  I have a passion for teaching and caring for young children and enjoy seeing and supporting the children through their milestones.  I enjoy providing exciting learning experiences and linking my hobbies, such as the arts and outdoors into the programme.  
 
 
Terri Thorpe

Terri Thorpe

Teacher
Fully Registered
Bachelor of Education Teaching (ECE)
Comprehensize First Aid Certificate 
 

Hi, I'm Terri and I have been in early childhood since I left high school many years ago.  I love my job and enjoy watching children's enthusiasm and passion in their play.  In the weekends my husband, two children and I love to spend time at home; visiting family and friends and supporting the Warriors, which is not always easy.  I love learning new languages and enjoy letting my creative side loose.  
 
Mandie Nelson

Mandie Nelson

Teacher
Bachelor in Teaching (ECE)
Fully Registered
Comprehensive First Aid Certificate
 
Hi, I have been working in ECE since 2010 and a playcentre mum since 1998.  I love working alongside children and making their learning fun.  I enjoy garden design and putting my hand into many projects.  I have 3 awesome children who are my world.  My favourite saying is "There's no such word as can't".  
Monique Raaymakers

Monique Raaymakers

Teacher
3rd Year Teacher Training
Comprehensive First Aid Certificate
 

Hi, my name is Monique and I have been working for Heather now for 2 years.  Before I started working here I was a nanny for 3 years working through Porse.  I am currently working towards gaining my Bachelor of Early Childhood.  I love that I get to be a part of the children's growth and watch them accomplish new challenges.  
Megan Markham

Megan Markham

Teacher
Bachelor of Education (ECE)
Fully Registered
Comprehensive First Aid Certificate
 
Hi, my name is Megan Markham, I live on a farm in Pukekawa with my husband and my son Grayson.  I've been working in early childhood for 10 years and hold a Bachelor of Teaching in Early Childhood Education.  I love working with children as it brings me great joy in believing that i am encouraging them to develop into competent, confident and capable children.  I work two days a week at Little Pukeko's Pre-School as now I have my own children to spend time with and watch grow.  
 
Janice Ball

Janice Ball

Teacher
Bachelor of Teaching and Learning Primary
Fully Registered 
Health and Safety Officer
Comprehensive First Aid Certificate
 
I have been teaching for over 30 years in a variety of roles.  Primary trained, I have taught many age groups from New Entrant through to High School in several Franklin Schools, spending 13 years teaching at Pukekawa Primary School before starting at Little Pukeko's Pre-School.  
 
My husband and I lived and farmed a large sheep and beef property at Wairamarama (Onewhero) for 40 years.  We sold the farm last year and are now living on a small lifestyle block at Pukekawa, enjoying developing the property and spending time with our family (often at Whangamata Beach).  
 
We have three children and in-laws, seven grandchildren aged between 13 years-1 years old (3 of them of preschool age).
 
As we didn't travel when we were younger, over the past few years we have enjoyed travelling to amazing overseas destinations.  Hopefully we have many more to explore!

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