Our Programme

St Mark's Preschool

At St Mark’s Preschool, we believe in the importance of high-quality early childhood education. We have a strong focus on providing a positive foundational learning experience, and believe that every child is capable and has the ability to reach their potential.

St Mark’s Preschool programme follows a play-based inquiry model as a part of the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program (IB-PYP).  We also adhere to New Zealand’s early childhood curriculum, Te Whariki.  We interweave both curriculums through all activities and all areas of the curriculum to develop a unique programme that combines a balance between child-initiated inquiry and structured, small group activities which match the age and developmental stage of each age group.

All of our teachers are committed, highly experienced and fully qualified early childhood educators who are passionate about nurturing and developing young children.  Our teaching team brings a wide variety of teaching and learning styles to both support and encourage children through the different stages of development.  The diversity of staff contributes to meeting the needs of our multicultural community and contributes to the strong partnership with parents and whanau to celebrate and promote each child’s learning and development.

Our Preschool operates 48 weeks a year, closing only for one week in the July school holidays (mid-year break) and for three weeks over the Christmas/New Year period. Our central Wellington location and convenient opening hours – 7:30 am to 5:30 pm each day – make us an ideal choice for everyone.

The Preschool timetable is structured placing the children at the heart of our programme.  There is a balance between active play-based activities and introduction to the academic skills of literacy, numeracy and science. Throughout the day, the approaches to learning – thinking, research, social, communication and self-management skills – are fostered and developed.

As an IB school, we believe that children are naturally drawn to explore, experience and to learn. We believe that nature has always been a place of wonder for children – a place to explore, assert their independence, take risks, exercise resilience, promote a healthy lifestyle and wellbeing and overcome fears. It inspires curiosity, wonder, possibilities, imagination, motion, contemplation, exploration and gales of laughter. Our students enjoy regular nature walks at the nearby Matairangi Nature Trail. Nature is a child’s world.

Our Preschool students enjoy regular lessons with specialist teachers in Te Reo Maori, Spanish, Physical Education and Music and Movement.  They also make regular visits to the Library, Chapel and Hall at St Mark’s.

Preschool Timetable & Programme

7:30am - 9:00am
Children arrive
8:20am - 8:35am
Daily K
9:00am - 3:00pm
Active play-based inquiry
Structured learning sessions
Developing approaches to learning through play-based inquiry.
Nature walk in Matairangi Nature Trail (Term 1 & 4)
Specialist lessons
Pause, Breathe and Smile (Mindfulness Programme)
End of School Day Scheme
3:00pm - 5:30pm
Extended Day Scheme
Pick up

Children are able to extend their knowledge and skills through extra-curricular activities including Ballet through En Pointe Dance Academy and Physical Education and Fitness through external specialist organisations.

Children are settled, engaged, and experience an environment which is intentionally prepared by teachers. The programme reflects the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme, Christian values, and Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum. Literacy is strongly promoted. Teachers know children well and engage in conversations that are responsive to their interests.

– ERO Review Findings, 2022


Related Links

Preschool Term Dates