At Kawaha Point School we believe the curriculum should be more than just Literacy (reading & writing) and Numeracy (maths). We believe in a rich, diverse curriculum based on local stories and the environment. We believe that art, PE, music and other subject areas are vital for the development of great citizens of tomorrow. We believe that students should experience learning collaboratively, that challenge is a god thing and that celebrating progress not achievement makes for students with a healthier learning disposition. We believe that Learning Through Play is vital for the development of social skills and to let students explore and develop readiness for academic learning.  In line with the revised Curriculum we are developing a concept based curriculum that focuses on students understanding rather than simply 'knowing stuff'.


All students are assessed to identify strengths and areas to further develop.  We use a variety of nationally recognised assessments as well as good quality formative assessment. We expect all students to know what they are learning, why they are learning it and how they will know when they have achieved it. Our students should be able to tell you about their reading level and goals, writing goals and flowchart step in maths among other things. We have an assessment rubric for our Graduate Profile that can be viewed here


EXTENSION/ GATE (Gifted & Talented Education)

We have a multi-faceted approach to identifying students who require a faster pace of learning, to cover a wider range of topics and to be extended. We cater for these students through running extension programmes in class designed to meet student’s needs.


We have trained staff to provide support programmes such as Reading Recovery (we currently have 6 staff who are trained), Phonemic Awareness, Oral Language, Classroom Phonics, Perceptual Motor Programme, Tape Assisted Reading Programme, Multi Lit, Toe by toe and Listening Skills run throughout the year. 



Many students arrive at school not ready for formal instruction in reading, writing and maths. In the past we have pushed these students into reading etc and inadvertently taught them that they are not good at reading. Research shows that the play-based environment allows students to succeed as their learning is based at their interests and levels.  Brownlee (2016) talks about the link between children ‘forgetting’ how to play and the decline of Emotional Intelligence (Goleman, 1998). Skills such as self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, & social skills are being undervalued as the push for academic success is favoured.  High-order play works at the developmental stage of the child and encourages problem-solving, creativity, cognitive conflict, development of gross and fine motor-skills and language acquisition to name a few.  It creates less anxiety within the child and more resilience to tasks(Longworth Education, 2016). One of the biggest downfalls of education is that students are pushed too quickly to learn in a formal setting when their brain has not developed in this way until they are around the age of seven. However, pushing students to learn this way before they are ready can be more detrimental to their development than good (Hattie, 2012). Because of the above, we believe in learning through play and are looking to foster positive learning dispositions in our students.



A Te Reo Maori Bilingual Unit is provided for children from Year 0 to Year 6.  The kaupapa (main idea or philosophy) allows children to be taught in English and Maori.  If you speak some Maori at home and would like your children to learn Maori as well as English, then one of our 3 bilingual classes will be good for your child.  Our children learn to read and write in English, but they are also taught in Maori.

Learning in two languages gives your child the best of both worlds.  International research shows that children being taught in two languages generally finish school with higher qualifications (“Maori Education: Some Suggestions From  The Research Literature”, prepared by the Research Division of the Ministry of Education).



Each year children in Years 4-6 go to camp.  Camps at the start of the year focus on experiencing a range of activities (tramping, kayaking, etc) that can’t be performed in the classroom setting. Camps teach appreciation of and safety in our environment, alongside community living skills.


Children are growing up in an increasingly technological word.  Many of those technologies are involved with communication, and assist us to see, speak and get information from people all around the world, quickly and cheaply.  At Kawaha Point School we believe in using a range of technologies as tools in the learning    

process and to engage students. Digital cameras, computers, iPads, data projectors and a variety of software/aps (much of it readily available free online) are all tools used to support and enhance students’ learning. In Years 4-6, students are required to bring their own device to school (at this stage it is either a Chromebook or an ipad). Students and parents must sign the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) Agreement.

Kawaha Point School
Aquarius Drive
Rotorua, New Zealand
Ph: 07 348 5864
Fax: 07 349 2581