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2024 Berger

Debbie Berger

Since embarking on my teaching journey in 2017, I've found profound joy in shaping young minds, guiding them to explore their interests and embrace their curiosity. As a teacher, I've had the privilege of witnessing the spark of discovery ignite within my students, and it's a feeling that never loses its magic.

Balancing my role as an educator with being a wife and mother to two wonderful children has been a rewarding challenge. When I'm not in the classroom, I cherish the moments spent walking my dog, finding solace in the simple rhythm of nature. However, it's the quality time spent with my family that truly rejuvenates me, particularly during our visits to my husband's family in Israel. These journeys have not only enriched our cultural understanding but have also provided us with lasting memories.

My teaching philosophy revolves around nurturing children's innate curiosity. I strongly believe that by encouraging their interests and supporting their questions, we foster a love for learning that transcends the classroom. It's remarkable to witness their eyes light up as they uncover new ideas and concepts.

In essence, teaching isn't just my profession – it's my passion. Guiding children towards realising their potential and fostering their inquisitiveness brings a deep sense of fulfilment. As I continue on this journey, I look forward to many more years of inspiring young minds and creating a positive impact that extends far beyond the classroom walls.

2024 Bowler

Gwen Bowler

Education has no beginning and no end. It ebbs and flows and is ever-changing. As an educator, it is my responsibility to instill a love of learning and an ability to adapt to an ever-changing world.

My teaching journey started at 40 when I retrained as a teacher after a career in journalism and many years as a stay-at-home mother. When we guide our students to be lifelong learners, we send them towards their next journey well-prepared for whatever life brings.

2024 Chauval

Angel Chauval

Wairakei Primary school has a wonderful rural environment and an amazing community. I enjoy working with this community to help students rise to succeed. Learning happens everywhere and is different for every child, celebrating and challenging students is my drive as a teacher.

I strive to encourage every student to achieve to the best of their ability. My passions are Technology and Science. I use them as foundations in unlocking excitement and wonder to produce thinkers and creators.

2024 Flowers

Suzanne Flowers

My passion is to create a love of learning so my students become ‘lifelong learners’. My focus is the importance of acquiring knowledge so I can keep informed and keep my students up to date with new learning strategies.

I am a local here and enjoy all that Taupō has to offer. I love walking with my husband and dog by the lake or river, having coffee with friends, family gatherings, and gardening. When not in Taupō I enjoy being by the sea at Papamoa.

2024 Griffin

Fiona Griffin

I believe Wairakei Primary School is a special place. It provides a safe environment for our children to discover, create and develop their love of learning.

I grew up in Taupō and have lived here most of my life. I am married with two grown sons and two delightful grandchildren. My husband and I enjoy travelling, spending time with our family and friends, tramping and camping. I love arts and crafts, in particular painting and sketching. Before becoming a teacher, I was a tailor and had my own clothing design business. I still enjoy designing and making clothing, especially wedding dresses.

I have been a teacher since 2005. I joined Wairakei Primary School in 2018. I love teaching and I especially love teaching at Wairakei Primary School. I became a teacher after 7 years as a scout leader for 1st Taupō Scouts. This was where I realised my desire to inspire and educate children was more important to me than just one hour, once a week.

2024 Hill

Teagan Hill

My journey in education began in 2016 as a teacher aide. My passion only grew as I worked with the students around me, and I began my teacher training.

Wairakei Primary is a place where I myself can continue as a learner and also support the students in my class on their learning journey. There is a real community feel from both the whānau of the school and the staff within, which makes it feel like home.

I moved to Taupō in 2021 for a change of scenery from my hometown of Thames, where I spent most of my life. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with friends and whānau at the beach or riverside in and around the Coromandel.

2024 Howie

Kennis Howie

2024 Jackson

Leanne Jackson

I have a long history of being part of the education world. My experiences include being a parent, grandparent, and teacher. I have had training in both Early Childhood and Primary School.

I have been working at Wairakei Primary School since 2014 and I am teaching in the junior school. I have a strong belief that all children are capable learners and I am passionate about developing learning programmes that are creative, challenging, authentic and fun with my team. I nurture the children’s curiosity while encouraging them to become self- motivated and independent learners who understand what they are learning and why they are learning it.

I enjoy working in the supportive learning community of Wairakei Primary School where children, families and teachers learn and grow together.

2024 Morehu

Paul Morehu

I am from Christchurch but moved to Taupō at the end of 2018. I am passionate about travelling with my most memorable trip being to Egypt. I also love keeping fit through sport, the gym and just getting out and exploring the outdoors.

I have been a qualified teacher working in New Zealand since 2013. Prior to that, I spent 8 years in Hong Kong working with Chinese children in primary schools.

I decided to pursue a career in teaching because I loved the idea of making a difference in the world by helping children learn and develop as people. It is rewarding to see the progress children make and to be a part of their learning journeys.

2024 Nicholson

Tayla Nicholson

My mission here at Wairakei Primary School is to assist children in developing their passion and skills to become lifelong learners. I believe it is vital that we allow the children to have an impact on the world one step at a time.

On a personal note, I am a fun and energetic person who loves all things sport. You will find me on the sideline of almost any sports game. I am involved in touch rugby, social football and hockey. I am also a little bit of a gym-junkie, who is always up for a challenge.

2024 Robinson

Codie Robinson

I'm an adventurous person who loves spending time outdoors, camping, hunting, and fishing. When I'm not exploring the wilderness, you can often find me at the gym, where I enjoy staying active and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Growing up in a small rural town in Stratford, Taranaki, I learned to appreciate the simple things in life and developed a strong connection to nature.

After finishing high school, I decided to move to Rotorua, where I studied by distance learning to be a teacher. My partner and I have relocated to Taupō, and we are excited to explore everything this beautiful town has to offer.

I am thrilled to be embarking on this chapter in my teaching career and look forward to making a positive impact on the lives of my students at Wairakei Primary School.

jC WPS2023 Ross

Carla Ross

I am passionate about our students, teaching and learning, particularly in the areas of literacy, digital technology, physical education, and the Arts. I believe that forming positive relationships with students and whānau are at the heart of success for everyone.

I enjoy Wairakei Primary School for the whānaungatanga and maanaakitanga where close connections between staff, students, and the wider Wairakei community are fostered and enjoyed.

2024 Foley

Jenna Foley

My journey in education has taken me down many different paths including teaching in an Area school, urban English and Welsh schools, small semi-rural schools and in a purpose built Innovative Learning Environment.

Teaching at Wairakei Primary School allows me to use so many of the skills I gained in these different settings - as well as acquiring so many more. I consider myself a life-long learner and continuously strive to build on my knowledge of teaching and education in order to create the best possible outcomes for students.

In my spare time I enjoy playing netball, reading, getting out and about with my two children and making the most of what this area has to offer.

2024 Sprague

Sara Sprague

I have been teaching since 2004. I started teaching at Wairakei Primary School in 2011. I am married to Steve and we have two children – Myles and Amelia. Myles and Amelia both enjoyed their primary school years here at Wairakei Primary School. I am really proud to be part of this school and appreciate all the amazing opportunities that are given to our children.

I like working with children and teaching. I love the fun that can be had and the feeling of being a part of a child’s growth and development. My favourite subject is maths. I appreciate the patterns and connections that can be found in numbers and I enjoy problem-solving. I have trained as a Math Specialist Teacher (MST).

My family and I love living in the Taupō area. When I’m not teaching I enjoy spending time with my family, walking my dog and mountain biking - which is a particular family passion.

2024 Te Whare

Briana Te Whare

Ko Pirongia te maunga (mountain)

Ko Waipa te awa (river)

Ko Tainui te waka 

Ko Ngati Maniapoto te iwi (tribe)

Ko Te Aharoa te marae

Ko Te Whare tōku whanau (family)

Ko Chris Te Whare tōku papa (dad)

Ko Michelle McEwan tōku mama (mum)

I tupu ake ahau i Tokoroa (I am from Tokoroa)

Ke Taupō koe e noho ana inaianei (I live in Taupō)

When I was 11 I decided that I wanted to become a teacher. Straight after high school I moved to Tauranga to study teaching and straight after university I started my first teaching job in Tokoroa. Most of my teaching journey has been in Tokoroa where I have taught from Year 0 to Year 8. Working in my hometown was an incredible experience as I got to work alongside people that I have grown up with and also alongside my own teachers who inspired me. 

Outside of teaching I love to be outdoors. Walks, going for trips in our makeshift camper and exploring our backyard with my partner fills my bucket.

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