The Kaiapoi Team

This is our team of teachers and staff at Educare Kaiapoi. Scroll through to find out more about our teaching team.

Aletta Duff

Centre Manager, Registered Teacher
Kia ora, I have lived in Canterbury for most of my life and currently live in North Canterbury with my husband on a lifestyle block where we have a variety of animals including horses, goats, pigs and chickens and I have three adult children. I have been involved within the Early Childhood Sector for over 20 years both as a teacher and within different leadership positions. I hold a Bachelor of Teaching ECE and a Masters of Educational Leadership.
I am passionate about the way children learn through their curiosity and their ability to explore and refine their working theories. I also enjoy mentoring our kaiako to grow and develop their own teaching practice to be the best teachers they can be.
In my spare time I enjoy spending time with our animals, playing cello and doing DIY projects.

Vanessa Mahaki

Assistant Manager, Registered Teacher
Kia Ora, my name is Vanessa.
I live in North Canterbury and was raised in Central Otago.
I have been teaching for more than 17 years and I have a Diploma in Early Childhood.
I live with my husband, three boys and dog ruby. We like to spend lots of time outdoors, camping, fishing and traveling.
I love working with tamariki and providing a warm, nurturing, respectful environment.

Michelle Gleave

Registered Teacher
Kia Ora, Ko Michele toku ingoa.
I am originally from the North Island but class North Canterbury as my home, where I have lived since 2008 with my husband and daughter. I have being teaching for the past 15 years. During my spare time I enjoy taking photos of children and families, baking and spending time with my family. We love to get outdoors riding, walking, exploring and travelling our amazing country.
I feel that each child should be seen as an individual, as no one is the same they are all unique and amazing in their own way. I feel that communication with whānau and families is the key to developing an amazing whanaungatanga with tamariki.

Abby Tichbourne

Registered Teacher
Kia ora my name is Abby, I moved from Christchurch to North Canterbury in my adult life and became involved in playcentre when my children were young. Having a passion for Early Childhood, I very quickly became a Qualified Playcentre Supervisor, then moved onto getting my Diploma in Early Childhood.
I have four adult children; and we all I have a passion for mountain biking around our awesome local river tracks. Other hobbies of mine are horse treks, walking my dog, and I also enjoy playing my baritone uke.
Teaching young children is one of the most rewarding jobs of all, providing them a welcoming, calm an environment with rich learning opportunities empowers the tamariki to become curious and competent adventurous learners. I am looking forward to getting to know you all!

Mariam Alkaisi

Registered Teacher
Kia ora, my name is Mariam and I live in North Canterbury with my husband and our cat Nutmeg. My interests include horses, dancing, animals and nature. I also have a strong passion for science and looking after our environment. I completed my Bachelor of Teaching in 2019 and I am fully qualified. I have four nieces with another one on the way!!
I love the way children make their own imagination in their play and I love joining in as well.

Maddie Peters

Ko Maddie toku ingoa.
Hello everyone, I am Maddie! I have been working with children in various ECE settings over the past 15 years. This includes nannying overseas, home caring and preschool/nursery settings. My passion is all ages as I love watching babies grow into young children and find their own personalities through play and learning. Outside of work I enjoy a lot of cooking and crafting/art. I love using these hobbies within my job as I think they are great skills and passions to share with children.

Amanda Flanagan

Kia ora, my name is Amanda. I’m a mum of 3 boys. I am born and raised in Christchurch, and have lived in Woodend since 2014. My passion is cooking and baking, and I love to try out new delicious recipes. I can’t wait to share them all with the Educare Kaiapoi whānau.