We think we do something pretty special here at Tiny Nation and we want to take the right people along for the journey. We know that our educators are our fire-lighters and magic-makers. They enable us to partner with families to support our tiniest citizens to fulfil their greatest potential.
Our commitment to educators
“Whāngaia ka tupu, ka puāwai.
That which is nurtured, grows and blossoms.”
Here’s how we look after our educators at Tiny Nation
Educators negotiate their hourly rates with families. Tiny Nation also contributes to educators remuneration through a fortnightly resource payment.
Your hourly rate should reflect your experience and knowledge. Our Tiny Nation trained educators generally set rates between $6.50 and $9.00 per child, per hour (giving a total hourly rate of up to $36.00, based on four children in care). Tiny Nation will also make resource payments, to support you to deliver a rich programme for children.
Ultimately, we want to ensure that your work as an educator is acknowledged with the appropriate remuneration. After all, you’re doing the most important job of all!
We walk alongside you to provide support, resources, tools and mentoring. We get that taking on responsibility for shaping little minds is a big deal! So that you never have to do it alone, we have created a Tiny Nation village to tap into. Our village of support is here to help you with:
- Initial registration, business set-up and marketing.
- Getting clear on your early learning philosophy and how it will inform your day-to-day programme.
- Planning programmes for the children in your care and using Te Whāriki (the Early Childhood Curriculum) in a way that is meaningful and authentic.
- Resources to support bi-cultural practice.
- Regular communication with your families (newsletters, social media, online journaling).
- Ongoing business support and mentoring (with experts in tax and contracting roles).
- Growing your professional networks as an educator – with each other, with other community support agencies and with prospect families.
We recognise the important role and responsibility that all Tiny Nation educators, families and staff play in keeping our children safe. We provide personal support to ensure you feel comfortable with meeting all health and safety requirements in your service. This includes providing free refresher child first aid courses every two years and annual child protection training – all delivered by experienced and accredited facilitators.
We have invested in making the complicated simple by using innovative technology. We know you want to get on and do what you do best – educate and care for children! We don’t want you to be weighed down by unnecessary paperwork and administration. To help us get past this, we’ve created simple online processes and templates. You can access all of this by using your Tiny Nation Tablet Computer (issued to you before care begins). This will sort everything from parent sign-in and communication through to real-time policies and procedures. You can even do your daily journaling on it… it’s your one stop shop.
Early learning teaching philosophies are very personal. We know that, while many services prescribe to a certain philosophy or theory, each teacher has a unique view on what attracted them to the industry and why they do what they do. At Tiny Nation, we don’t ‘prescribe’ an over-arching learning philosophy for educators. Rather, we share a toolkit of resources that allows you to craft your own philosophy in consultation with the families and children in your care.
One of our key values is connection and we want to connect regularly with you! Tiny Nation represents a collective of people who are all dedicated to lifting the bar when it comes to early learning experiences for children. We encourage open communication at all times, as this plays an essential role in understanding where we can do more to foster our Tiny Nation movement. One aspect of this communication includes termly educator evenings where you will have the opportunity to discuss anything and everything with the wider Tiny Nation team, including the leadership team. We don’t just talk about transparency and trust; we act on it.
We know that as a trained educator or qualified teacher, you have already been exposed to professional learning and development opportunities. Ongoing learning contributes to being successful at what we do, and we want to model this thirst for learning for our Tiny Nation children. To recognize that all educators are on different learning pathways, all Tiny Nation educators will benefit from a $250 annual professional learning and development payment that they can invest in education and training opportunities of their choice, including first aid and child protection training. They will also have an annual release day to attend selected education and training.
We want to support our educators to invest in their own learning so that their children and families can benefit. We know that one of the biggest barriers here for educators is time (or the lack of). To help counter this, we offer a paid release day every year to our educators to enable them to access professional learning and development opportunities that are of interest to them, or to simply have some time to support their reflective practice and curriculum planning.
When you are selected as a Tiny Nation educator, you become a part of a community of like-minded educators and teachers. As a part of this, we deliver regular community programmes (learning through play, nature school, music and movement) for you to attend with the children in your care that are reserved solely for the Tiny Nation community. We also offer regular workshops, webinars and learning modules on early learning topics that are current and relevant to your role as an educator. We regularly get your feedback to make sure that our programmes and planning meet your needs and support your goals as an educator. We also provide you with regular peer networking opportunities so that you can benefit from the support and friendship of one another and have some fun along the way. After all, we’re all building this Tiny Nation together!
Sometimes life is more important than our work. As parents ourselves, we know that it can be difficult juggling our family and our day jobs when emergencies crop up. To support our Tiny Nation educators with this, we offer up to 8 hours of relief and emergency cover per year. This relief and emergency care is covered by our roving regional Visiting Teacher, who is a qualified and registered early childhood teacher. We also empower educators to have flexibility around their service conditions, including the option of introducing holding fees for child absences and holiday closure.
We want your educator voice to extend past Tiny Nation and influence the wider home-based sector. We also want you to feel a sense of belonging to a representative group that commands a seat at the table when it comes to influencing early learning decisions in New Zealand. The HBCA regularly meets with the Minister of Education and is actively involved in policy decision making and implementation. Being a member of this association gives Tiny Nation access to regional events, networking with other members, voting rights at the Annual General Meeting and an open line of communication to the Association’s Board who represent you at Government level. We will regularly share e-newsletters with you that provide an overview of anything current that’s happening specific to home-based and the wider ECE sector. This will include any changing requirements, Ministry updates and the influence that Tiny Nation is having within the sector and at Government and policy-setting level.
Home-based educators take on a significant responsibility when they agree to care for other people’s children. While we hope we never have to use this type of insurance cover, we have it in place to protect all of our educators. Statutory liability insurance provides cover for costs associated with any prosecution that might arise from children being injured while in your care. Public liability insurance protects you against third party property damage or bodily injury that may occur from the operation of your childcare business. The Tiny Nation insurance cover for both statutory and public liability claims is free to all educators.
It’s only right that when you belong to a collective you get to benefit from being a part of it! Tiny Nation is in the process of negotiating a number of pretty exciting educator benefits on behalf of our educator collective. We want you to feel rewarded for being a part of Tiny Nation. This extends to business support services, retail prices, subscriptions and resources. Hey, we’ve even thrown in discounted coffee (because we all need to start the day right!)
We only recruit trained educators and teachers because we know that qualifications are linked to higher quality outcomes for children. We also want to be able to tailor our support services to include business mentoring and networking for educators that extends past just getting started in the industry. Because you are already trained, you’re looking for your next step. We have a dedicated early learning team to drive your ongoing learning and growth. This starts with our adult education trained visiting teachers, some of whom are also accredited Incredible Years® and Circle of Security® facilitators and trainers. Your visiting teacher will work with you to create your own career pathway based on your aspirations, philosophy and goals for the future.
Because we pride ourselves on nurturing strong industry partnerships, Tiny Nation will also lead you through an exclusive framework for education and training designed by a range of industry experts. This is where our relationships with early learning sector experts kick in and we get to benefit from the teachings of key influencers in early childhood education and child mental health and wellbeing.
When it comes to more formal education and training opportunities, we focus our efforts on supporting higher level learning and training by offering a tailored career pathway to Tiny Nation educators. We place huge value on education and training and want to see our educators grow and develop their skills so that our Tiny Nation children and families can benefit.
We like to think that at Tiny Nation we grow our family each time we bring in a new educator. We want you to feel a strong sense of belonging, connection and inclusiveness as you journey with us. You are, after all, at the heart of all we do. We want you to be proud to be a part of Tiny Nation and will provide you with branded clothing that is practical, stylish and high quality for you to wear with pride!