Making a difference in early childhood education qualifications

March 24, 2018

Kerry Leonard and Kim Hogan live and breathe early childhood education (ECE).

The Bodhi Ltd founders have over 40 years experience between them in the sector and have held positions such as educators, team leaders, managers, mentors and mothers.

Kerry is the owner and manager of three early childhood education and care centres in West Auckland and co-founder of Ohana Young Parent Charitable Trust which provides advice, guidance and education to young parents.

Kim began her career in ECE straight after high school in 2002. She worked in the babies’ room at Kerry’s first centre Just Kidd Inn Too which was founded in 1994. She went on to become a registered teacher, centre manager and mentor to many student educators.

The pair wants to share their wealth of knowledge, their ECE community and facilities by offering early childhood education qualifications with their own personal touch.

“Kim and I still actively work in early childhood and we love exploring the latest research and findings in ECE. We love challenging ourselves professionally, and creating teaching teams who are motivated and passionate. We feel we have, and continue to, excel in the field and felt it was time to pass on our knowledge and passion to other student teachers,” says Kerry.

Bodhi is a Private Training Establishment like no other with a different take on student support, course content and how that content is delivered.

Small learning groups of 12 to 20 students enable tutors to establish one-on-one relationships with students and maintain regular contact.

“Genuine, reciprocal and respectful relationships form between our tutors and students - this is exactly what should be created between an educator and a child within ECE environments,” says Kim. Bodhi shares a unique relationship with Ohana Young Parents Charitable Trust. Young parents from Ohana complete an Infant and Toddler Care Certificate, Level 2 and there is a pathway for them to progress and continue their education through Bodhi providing opportunities that they may not otherwise get.

“I am so proud of our young mothers at Ohana who work hard every day to make a difference for themselves and their babies,” says Kerry adding that it is the ultimate reward.

Course content is delivered online giving students the flexibility to study at a time that is convenient to them.

“We aim to present the course material in a diverse manner. We include podcasts, TedTalks and small quizzes to keep the students’ interest up. We try and avoid lengthy academic papers where possible and deliver content in a fun innovative way,” says Kerry.

Kerry and Kim carefully crafted the course content adding their sector and teaching knowledge into the qualifications. It includes an emphasis on the Pikler philosophy and nature play as well as exploring other theories so that students can find their own core values.

This unique approach in student support, course content and how that content is delivered has resulted in a 100 percent student success rate since Bodhi began.

Bodhi currently offers a NZQA approved level 5 and level 6 diploma in early childhood education and care which you can cross credit towards a bachelor in teaching to gain teacher registration.

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