Kia Ora, Welcome to Kindergarten and Early Learning

To be the best not for profit early childhood provider, in partnership with parents, whānau and community – recognising children as the heart of all we do.

Our vision

To be the best not for profi t early childhood provider, in partnership with parents, whānau and community – recognising children as the heart of all we do.

Mission statement

Teachers, parents, whānau and community together providing the best learning opportunities for young children. 


Our values

C Community
H Honesty
I Innovation
L Leadership
D Diversity
R Responsive relationships
E Excellence
N Nurturing


A little bit about us

• The Counties Manukau Kindergartens and Early Learning Counties Manukau (ELCM) centres are owned and operated by Counties Manukau Kindergarten Association.
• We have been providing quality educational experiences and environments for children since 1952.
• Our 26 kindergartens and three ELCM centres are 100% kiwi owned and operated and are not-for-profit.


Why choose a Counties Manukau kindergarten or Early Learning Counties Manukau (ELCM) centre?

We employ fully qualified and registered teachers who are passionate about their work and who are kept up to date through on-going professional development. Qualified teachers are critical to quality early childhood education.
Through building warm and nurturing relationships with children, teachers foster children’s skills and success as a learner.
We provide experiences and resources that will ensure your child will have the best learning tools to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
Our indoor and outdoor environments are attractive, challenging and safe, with a focus on natural spaces and materials. These surroundings support a child’s natural instinct to learn through creation and discovery.
We value play as the foundation for learning for young children, and our programmes are designed to encourage learning through exploration, problemsolving, sharing and enquiry.
We acknowledge the dual heritage of Aotearoa New Zealand and the treaty of Waitangi (te Tiriti o Waitangi) incorporating te reo and tikanga Māori as a living culture and language is integral to our programmes.
We work in partnership with parents, family and whānau because you know your children better than anyone, and
we know that children benefit most when their family is involved in their learning.


“The principal goal of education is to create people who are capable of doing new things, not simply repeating what other generations have done – people who are creative, inventive and discoverers”. Jean Piaget

20 hours ECE funding

The government provides funding for eligible children to attend an Early Childhood Centre for up to 20 hours free each week, if parents opt into the scheme (special conditions apply).
In our kindergartens, up to 20 hours free attendance each week is available for all children who attend. The government provides this funding for 3 and 4 year old children while Counties Manukau Kindergarten Association provides this funding for 2 year old children who attend as well.
In our Early Learning Centres this funding is available for 3 and 4 year old children only.
A fee is charged for children who choose to attend for more than 20 hours each week in our kindergartens, or who are under 3 years of age in our Early Learning Centres.
Special conditions apply so please refer to your centre’s enrolment information and current fee schedule for more information.


What will my children learn?

Through their play, exploration and learning experiences, children:
• Develop the dispositions necessary for lifelong learning – courage, curiosity, trust, playfulness, confi dence, responsibly and perseverance
• Learn about our world and the diverse people who inhabit it, including respect for other cultures, languages and traditions.
• Learn communication and social skills which develop through working and playing with others
• Develop numeracy and mathematics skills
• Learn important literacy skills such as recognising and understanding print and symbols, through story-telling, reading books, and expressing their ideas and thoughts
• Develop creative thinking and problem-solving skills
• Explore their ideas and theories about physical and natural sciences, and learn how to express these.
• Experience self-expression through art, music and drama
• Share and explore their understandings of people, places things and events.  


How is my child’s learning encouraged and recorded?

Your child has an individual portfolio or folder, which contains “learning stories”, photographs and examples of their work. Learning stories describe the way in which children learn individually, with and alongside others, suggesting possible ways your child’s learning can be fostered and enhanced. Teachers use learning stories to assess and plan the next steps for children’s learning.
Your child’s portfolio belongs to your family/whānau and you are welcome to take it home and share with
other members of your family. Children, parents and whānau are also invited to add their own learning
stories or ideas about how the child’s learning can be encouraged.
Children take their portfolio with them when they leave the centre and go on to school.
At the centre, you will also see photos, videos, wall displays and other ways of sharing information which show the
different learning experiences children are engaged in, and explain how these activities have helped children progress as learners. 


Partnership with Parents

Parents and whānau play a key role in what we do. When teachers are able to work in partnership with you, your child is able to make the most of their learning opportunities. We welcome and encourage your involvement and hope you choose to be part of your child’s experiences at the centre. Teachers make time for you to discuss your child’s learning and progress with them, encourage you to spend time at the centre to share in your child’s day, and to be part of family and community events held by the centre.

How does early childhood education help my child when they start school?

Starting school is a huge step for children and their whānau. The time that children spend in an early childhood centre equips them with many skills as a learner, which leads to a smooth transition to school.
Early childhood education develops:
• Independence
• Self-help skills
• A sense of responsibility towards themselves and towards others
• Language and communication skills
• Early mathematics and literacy skills

These skills help children to prepare for more formal education.
The centre staff can provide you with more information about your local schools. Teachers will actively support you and your child with this important next step. 

“Since we cannot know what knowledge will be needed in the future, it is senseless to try to teach it in advance. Instead our job must be to turn out young people who love learning so much, and who learn so well they will be able to learn whatever needs to be learnt” John Holt.


 Click here for a PDF version



Term Dates


Early Learning Centres
Friday 12th January 2018 to Friday 21st December 2018

Centres OPEN during term breaks
Tuesday 16th January 2018 to Thursday 20th December 2018

Centres CLOSED during term breaks
Term 1

Friday 19th January to Friday 13th April 

Term 2

Monday 30th April to Friday 6th July

Term 3

Monday 23rd July to Friday 28th September 

Term 4

Monday 15th October to Thursday 20th December






 Contact Us

To contact Head Office or any of our kindergartens and early learning centres, please click on the button: 

Get in touch





CMKA offers limited spaces for 2 year olds up to 20 hours free in some Kindergartens.  

Conditions Apply!

All our kindergartens offer 20 hours ECE for all children aged 3 -5 years - Conditions Apply!

If you do not use your 20 Hours ECE allocation at our kindergartens, or your child attends for more than 20 hours each week,  the following fees apply:

Full day Kindergarten -  $4.80 per hour

 More on our Fees