Dominion Road School

My first day at Dominion Road School was an overall success!  The bus got me there no problem.  The bus stop is a short walk from my apartment, and it dropped us off right outside the school!

How perfect is that?  I got there plenty early at 11:40.  Actually, it was WAY early because the principal was not expecting us until 12:30!  I must have interpreted the email wrong–I had it in my mind that we were meant to be there 12:00-3:00.  I also learned that I would not actually be participating in my class today.  I just met the principal and got oriented with the school.  Oh well!  I waited in the teacher’s lounge until the principal was back from a meeting.  The staff bathroom was adorable, it had a bunch of quotes on the wall!

What great inspiration for a nervous little student teacher like me!

It took me just one trip to the toilet to know for certain that I was going to like it there.  Then we got to look at the newsletter!

Us new *American* student teachers got a shout-out!  Plus there were some cute pictures:

Everyone loves bubbles!

I think this is a review of a museum?  Also from the newsletter, I learned that in a few weeks, the whole school is going to the Auckland Symphony (and guess who gets to tag along! ME!)

At 12:20, we met with our principal.  What a lovely woman she is!  She asked us about what we needed to do while we were there (I told her about all the lessons we’d be doing) and she explained what she expected us to do (basically just be professional).

Then, she gave us a tour of the school while she gave us a little background information.  The school has a very interesting layout.  It’s a bit hard to explain, but it is very open.  The playground is in the middle, and around the edges, there are several buildings with a few classes each.  There aren’t really any hallways, each classroom opens up to a deck outside.  Plus they have a small pool for swimming lessons and to play in at recess.  It almost looks like camp!

Although I didn’t get to meet my class, I did get to peak in on them.  They were really well behaved, and I could see that they were very attentive and enthusiastic.  I got some big smiles!  Plus, the teacher I will be working with is the team leader.  Score! I love when I get to work with teachers that are experienced and know what they are doing.  They will have the best, most reliable advice.  Plus, since they have mastered teaching, they make the best mentors!

My biggest impression of the school was that is very strong community.  I’m pretty sure the principal knew every student and really focused on making relationships with the kids. I could tell that it was all about the students at this school.  Most of all, I felt welcomed and at home.  I can’t wait to learn whatever I’m about to learn there!  I’m so excited for my first real day next week!




Filed under New Zealand, Student Teaching

2 responses to “Dominion Road School

  1. Miranda

    Hi Emma, I just came across your blog and it’s adorable. I am from New Zealand (but I live in Australia now) and know Auckland and all the places you talk about really well. I’m a little homesick reading about it – although I am not from Auckland which helps. Anyway – that is a really typical school layout for New Zealand, particularly for a primary school!! I did a high school year in Canada and was just astounded that it was all in one building. Even my high school was like that, several big block buildings and lots of outdoor areas and a huge sports field/poool. I hope you are enjoying NZ – I am going home for a week in April and just can’t wait. It’s much greener than dusty old Perth 🙂

    • Welcome! Yes also when I started classes at AUT, a student mentor pointed across campus and said that most of my classes were that way, and she described it as “just a bunch of regular classrooms” I was like, how is that different from all these buildings? Then I realized, it was open like the schools! I love how airy it is 🙂

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