Guinea Pigs, Chooks and a Cat Called Franklin

Updated: Aug 21, 2021

Here at Prebbleton Childcare, our pets have always been an integral part of our curriculum. We are home to chickens, guinea pigs & budgies. At our sister centre Brynley Street Nursery & Preschool we are home to Franklin the cat & rabbits. The teachers and tamariki are involved with the day to day care of our animals, feeding them, helping to clean their enclosure’s, collecting eggs and having a cuddle with the help of a teacher.

We believe that caring for a pet instils respect for life and an awareness of the needs of others as well as giving tamariki an understanding of how their behaviour can affect others. Learning about empathy, relationships, the environment and nature are just some of the benefits tamariki receive by caring for animals. Research suggests there is a scientific grounding for having pets in the classroom so it makes sense for parents to look for an early childhood education provider that offers plenty of different opportunities for children to interact with animals throughout their time at the centre.

Having the animals at our centres provides so many benefits and allows tamariki to observe and interact and then expand on their learning experiences through stories, play or research. Tamariki learn about life cycles, the environment and sustainability. At Preschool, we save all our food scraps for our chickens. This greatly reduces our waste. Our chickens then lay several eggs per day. We then facilitate regular baking activities using our fresh eggs! All in all, we feel this fosters a more holistic approach towards tamariki's learning and their time at the centre.

Tamariki settling in the presence of animals is something we observe all the time. The bond and relationships tamariki form with animals is beneficial, helping them to build a sense of empathy and respect and, in many cases, providing a calming influence a child settles into the day. Tamariki get so engaged in watching or interacting with an animal and it can be a very positive start to the day or an effective way to transition from an unsettled moment.

There is so much to be learned by caring for animals, with endless opportunities to teach our tamariki about our relationship with animals and the care and respect they deserve. Having animals provides children with a real and meaningful connection with the environment and the world around them. To find out more about the Prebbleton Childcare phone us on 033499970 or email us at

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