Our philosophy

Canterbury Norwood Kindergarten (CNK) is a small and intimate, community managed kindergarten, where staff and parents work together to provide quality early childhood education for our children. We also promote partnerships with our local community and involve them in our learning program to help our children understand the importance of being part of this community.


Our kindergarten welcomes children from diverse cultural backgrounds and children with special needs. Families are encouraged to share their culture and home experiences with the kindergarten to help enrich the knowledge of our children.


We base our program on the Early Years Learning Framework with an emphasis on play-based learning. We believe all children are capable of learning successfully and we support each child to participate in the program. Our program takes into account the uniqueness of each child, their individual level of development, their parents’ expectations and our staff members’ values as early childhood educators. Our staff members constantly embrace new ideas and creative elements and include these in the curriculum to help children understand and reflect on what is happening in the wider world.


We aim to provide a nurturing and safe environment for free play which we believe is fundamental in enhancing our children’s emotional development, physical, intellectual, creative, communication and social skills.


The pathway of our children’s learning and development is centred on our theme of “belong, grow, blossom”. We aim to make children aware that they belong not only to their family, but also to a community, cultural heritage and social groups outside the family. We also help children grow their sense of identity and self-confidence and blossom from their learning experiences.


The day-to-day program is flexible and allows for each child’s individual needs, abilities and interests. We enable our children to play and experiment at open-ended activities with few interruptions. Our children are encouraged to explore, observe, create and use their imagination. We respect the rights of the children to make choices and participate in decisions that affect, them including their learning. Children are encouraged to choose their preferred activity, spend a reasonable amount of time at the activity and then complete their chosen task.

Program Goals

Our broad program goals are for the children to:

  • Develop a sense of their personal and social selves.
  • Experience an environment which nurtures their emotional well being.
  • Experience a programme that respects their individuality.
  • Develop a sense of their own personal uniqueness.
  • Develop a positive attitude to learning; where their play is valued as meaningful learning and the importance of spontaneous play is recognized.
  • Develop both verbal and non-verbal communication skills for a range of purposes.
  • Discover different ways to be creative and expressive.
  • Experience the stories and symbols of their own and other cultures.
  • Gain confidence in and control of their bodies.
  • Learn strategies for active exploration, thinking and reasoning.
  • Develop working theories for making sense of the living, physical and material worlds.
  • Feel comfortable with the routines, rituals and regular events, and to know the limits and boundaries of acceptable behaviour.
  • Have the opportunity to learn with and alongside others.

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