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Feb 2011Nov 2014

Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Primary)

University of Canterbury

The BTchLn(Primary) is a professional qualification that prepares you for a rewarding career as a primary school teacher.  

Feb 2010Nov 2010

Certificate in Te Ao Māori

Wairakei Institute of Technology

This course was an introduction to aspects of te ao Māori including te reo Māori, waiata, and Māori society. The course will also introduce the history of and contemporary issues related to the Treaty of Waitangi.

Feb 2006Nov 2006

Diploma in Te Reo Māori

Waiariki Institute of Technology

This diploma provides students with the skills to engage confidently in Maori contexts. This diploma will develop Maori language skills to an intermediate level by focusing on korero tawhito, mōteatea and the different dialects spoken in Aotearoa and Te Waipounamu. Students will gain an understanding of and participate in the kawa of the marae and interpret the meanings, beliefs and practices relating to all facets of pa/marae and marae protocols.

Feb 2000Jun 2000

Certificate in Adult Teaching

Waiariki Institute of Technology

The aim of this course is to develop students who will understand the dimensions of tertiary teaching and apply teaching skills in a supervised context.

Feb 1996Nov 1996

Certificate in Sport and Recreation

Tuwharetoa Institute of Learning

Students will be introduced to sport and recreation as a career pathway. Students will learn to apply basic management skills and knowledge in sustaining an effective sports facility and explore, as well as implement, fundamental concepts of sports training and conditioning.

Feb 1998Nov 1988

Certificate in Community and Social Work

Waiariki Institute of Technology

The aim of this course is for students to understand concepts and theories of social change applicable to social work, and to learn how to apply them in practice.  Students will learn policy and service evaluation frameworks and will explore the theoretical underpinnings of social change practice and learn the major social change theories and models of intervention that can be used to address a social issue.


Ko Tongariro te maunga

Ko Taupō Nui a Tia te moana

Ko Waikato te awa

Ko Te Arawa te waka 

Ko Ngāti Ruingarangi te hapu

Ko Ngāti Tuwharetoa te iwi

Ko te Heu Heu te tangata 


Olivia Graham Wairakei School

Jo I am impressed by your desire to learn new things and find new ways to improve your teaching. You have a can-do attitude and a calm, steady demeanour with children. Your art was a huge success, as was your fitness training, your work in kapa haka and the way you clicked with using SOLO taxonomy. 2014

Danelle Unuwai Wairakei School

Kapa haka: At times Jo took a large group of students on her own as was able to manage and teach them effectively. She has the ability to use various strategies to help them grasp new skills and her natural intuition enables her to develop each individual's needs. I think Jo has many strengths that she has gained from life experience that will assist her with her teaching career and I wish her all the best for future endeavours. 2014

Debra Garratt Waipahihi School

It has been easy sharing my class with you. You have developed a warm and encouraging manner with the students and you have constantly reflected on what you have done and the needs of the students. This type of reflection is the most powerful to shape your planning and the students next steps for learning. I have been most impressed that you have used a variety of approaches and resources. Thank you for coming into Room 5 and Waipahihi School. 2013

Adam Kirkeby St Patrick's Catholic School

Jo has developed friendly, professional and positive relationships with staff and students. She demonstrated effective time and behaviour management skills. She has showed initiative and has often offered to help with extra school jobs and activities. Jo has established a positive classroom environment and students work following from her lessons has been excellent. 2012

Anne Marie Hunt University of Canterbury Lecturer

Jo demonstrated a commitment to her own professional development. She planned thoroughly, taught competently, and showed initiative when needed. Jo showed a great attitude and the potential to make an exceptional classroom teacher. 2011

Personal information

I am a friendly, honest and hard working team player, who strives to achieve quality and best practice in all that I do. I am a committed life-long learner who loves to listen and learn from others as much as I love to teach. I have three beautiful children who all attend school in Taupō. My interests include art, physical education, kapa haka, music, and spending time with my family.

Work experience

Jan 2017March

Youth Worker

REAL Southern Lakes, Taupo 

 Providing support for youth between the ages 12-19 years of age cope with anxiety, depression and everyday youth issues.  I work in Tongariro School and Alternative Education....  Friends programme  

Jan 2016Dec 216


Waipahihi Primary School, Taupo

I taught collaboratively in a year 3/4 class with Jen Maloney.  We had 50 students in total in a shared space, teaching the curriculum through interests and needs. I was an active member of the school life

While employed in the school I was involved in;

  • Tutoring the middle school Kapa Haka roopu for the 2016 Taiopenga,
  • Whanau hui,
  • Enviro and cultural team, planning
  • Touch rugby
  • Throughout the year I have had professional development in a range of areas including;

Throughout the year I have had professional development in a range of areas including; (i)Interlead appraisal, (ii) First Aid - Peak performance, (iii) Cultural ....,

Feb 2015Dec 2015


Wairakei Primary School, Taupo

I taught in a year 3 class. I work collaboratively and energetically in a team environment where routines and expectations are established in collaboration. I have passion, motivation and potential to grow through critical reflection. I have a commitment to school curriculum, school culture and to progressive teaching and learning approaches.

While employed in the school I was involved in;

  • Tutoring the senior Kapa haka for the 2015 Taiopenga,
  • A supportive role on the Whanau Hui and Health and Safety committees,
  • Kai karanga for the Powhiri process each term,
  • U 9's touch rugby manager/coach,  

Throughout the year I have had professional development in a range of areas including; (i)A neuroscience workshop with Nathan Mikaere Wallis, (ii)Literacy training with Ros Thompson, (iii)Classroom observations in various curriculum areas, and (iiii)Completing and presenting my personal inquiry on 'how assessment data informs practice'.  

Aug 2014Oct 2014

Teacher relieving


I have relieved in four schools during my final year of my studies.  

Wairakei Primary School, Year 5/6.  Waipahihi Primary School, Year 1/2.  Hilltop Primary School, Year 2 & 5.  Tauhara Primary School, Year 0/1 & 3/4.   

May 2006May 2010

Kapa Haka Performer

Wairakei Terraces

I was a member of the Waiora kapa haka roopu performing to locals and visitors, where there was a big emphasis on Tikanga Māori through education. We also welcomed visitors to Taupō through powhiri and performance at local international events such as the A1GP and Taupō Iron Man. I was fortunate enough to be a part of the Waiora roopu that travelled to Taiwan in 2006 for the Indigenous Peoples Festival.

Mar 2007Dec 2007

Youth Health Promoter

Cafe for Youth Health

I was responsible for educating and supporting youth involved at both Tauhara College and Taupō Nui a Tia College who were members of the SADD (students against drunk driving) and YATA (youth access to alcohol) groups, with a focus to reduce alcohol related harm for young people aged under 25 years.  I worked with other local agencies within the community such as Taupō Police, Reap Centre, Tuwharetoa Health Services and ACC.   

Jun 1999Apr 2003

Rangatahi Health Promoter / Administration

Tuwharetoa Health Services

I began as the Administrator of the Taupō office for two years then moved into the Rangatahi Health Promotion Team to educate local youth in the Tuwharetoa area with a focus on alcohol & drugs and sexual health through education programmes and health promotion events.


Teaching experience

Waipahihi Primary School   2016              Wairakei Primary School     2015

Year 3/4 Class                                                          Year 3 Class

Wairakei Primary School  2014               Waipahihi Primary School  2013

Student teacher                                                      Student teacher 

Olivia Graham, Year 5/6                                       Debra Garrett, Year 5/6

Taupō Primary School  2012                    St Patrick's Catholic School  2012

Student teacher                                                      Student teacher 

Jo McNally, Year 3/4                                               Adam Kirkeby, Year 7/8

Waipahihi Primary School  2011 

Student teacher

Amanda Wilson, Year 0/1

My Emerging Teaching Philosophy

Children have the right to a happy, safe, stimulating and respectful environment, in which they feel free to express their own identity and creativity.  Building positive relationships with children, whānau and their community is very important to me to ensure learning is inclusive and effective. I believe I am a positive Māori role model, which is important for our tamariki to see to enable them to strive to their full potential. I have an understanding of Māori learners and effective culturally responsive teaching practices, which will help develop independent, innovative and creative individuals.

Children learn best through real-life, hands on, and inspiring learning experiences, and through taking responsibility for their own learning.  I will provide meaningful learning opportunities and guide the children through them, ensuring each child can reach their full potential in developing essential knowledge, skills and attitudes for life.

As a beginning teacher I have passion, motivation and potential to grow through critical reflection, identifying areas of personal growth and development. I work collaboratively and energetically in a team environment, with a commitment to school curriculum, school culture and to progressive teaching and learning approaches, integrating real life experiences as learning takes place in all contexts.  

Routines and expectations are best established in collaboration with the learners, giving them ownership of their environment.  Through this, children will learn to manage themselves, take initiative and show care for others. 

Regular, honest and constructive feedback, encouragement and support are central to learning, including developing a learners' own ability to give such feedback to themselves and to each other. Each child is unique and has their own learning style.  As a teacher I must recognise and understand different ways children learn in order to accommodate these diverse needs.   


Jen Maloney

Waipahihi Primary School, 20 Parata Street, Taupo.  Ph (07) 378 6455

[email protected]

Danelle Unuwai

Resource Teacher for Learning and Behaviour (RTLB), Taupo Cluster.  Ph 0212694081

[email protected]

Debra Garrett

Waipahihi Primary School,  20 Parata Street,  Taupō.  Ph (07) 378 6455

[email protected]


"Tell me and I forget.  Teach me and I remember.  Involve me and I learn".  Benjamin Franklin