Portia Manukuo - Early Childhood Education
Studying the Graduate Diploma in Teaching (ECE) online allowed Portia Manukuo the flexibility to fit her studies and assignments around the schedule of her two young tamariki.
After studying a Bachelor of Health Science while juggling being a stay-at-home mum, Portia Manukuo began to feel out of place in her career.
After some convincing from friends, she chose to pursue her lifelong passion of becoming a kaiako and applied for the Graduate Diploma in Teaching (ECE) online. With two young children at home, she needed to be able to study at her own pace.
“I chose to study for the Graduate Diploma in Teaching (ECE) online because it allowed me to set my own learning pace, and there was the added flexibility that I could fit my studies and assignments around the schedule of my two young tamariki.”
While Portia admits studying online can be isolating and challenging at times, she says she maintained a strong connection with peers and lecturers through online discussions and collaborative online activities.
“I have gained so much knowledge from my peers and felt incredible support from my online lecturers who have been so supportive and given me a wealth of knowledge and resources that I’ve been applying to myself as a person, and as an ECE kaiako.
The Graduate Diploma in Teaching (ECE) allowed me to set my own learning pace, and fit my studies and assignments around the schedule of my two young tamariki.
“My fellow peers have been so inspiring and motivating and I’ve been guided by incredible associate kaiako on placement.”
Practicum placements were a highlight of the year for Portia, who says the hands-on experience with tamariki was “invaluable” as she prepares to find full-time work in an ECE setting.
“Another highlight is my growing confidence of using te reo Māori to converse with tamariki, it’s been empowering to build my knowledge, I use it in my everyday interactions with tamariki”, she says.
“When I look back to the start of the year, I was so excited to become a kaiako but didn’t know if I would make a good one! I think my experience as an educator evolved and continued to improve over the year, I am much more knowledgeable, confident, and reflective as an educator. I believe it’s also made me a better parent too.”
“I feel well equipped to begin teaching now!”