Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Early Childhood Education Pioneer Remembered

Early Childhood Education Pioneer Remembered

Marie Bell will be remembered as a truly inspirational woman with a passion for young children and education that has left a lasting mark on New Zealand’s early childhood education sector, NZEI Te Riu Roa National Executive member Judith Nowotarski says.

Marie Bell, aged 90, passed away yesterday (Saturday) after a lifetime committed to promoting child-friendly education and the holistic development of young children. She was an accomplished teacher educator and academic, a founding member of Parents Centre and was awarded the Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2006 for services to early childhood education. She was a life-long learner herself, undertaking post-graduate study throughout her life and completing her PhD in 2005 at the age of 82 – Victoria University’s oldest-ever doctorate.

An early proponent of children learning through play, her teaching emphasised holistic development, understanding of children’s behaviour, respect for individual growth and learning, and positive relationships between adult and child – ideas which are “common sense” now but were seen as radical in the late 1950s.

Marie Bell trained as a primary school teacher in 1939 at Wellington Training College before doing post-war study at the London Institute of Education. She returned to New Zealand keen to implement progressive child-centred practices in kindergartens here. She was appointed as a lecturer in “junior education” at the Wellington Training College. In the 1950s she became active teaching ante natal classes for Parents Centre and lecturing for Playcentre supervisors and Kindergarten teacher trainees. 

In 1962, she led a group of parents setting up Matauranga, a progressive parent co-oeprative school based on the principles of parent participation, holistic development, learning through play and freedom from corporal punishment. She taught at Matauranga from 1963-1971.

"Marie Bell was a consumate educator, challenging the orthodoxies of the 1940s and helping create the world-leading early childhood education sector New Zealand has today," Judith Nowotarski says. "Thousands of teachers today were influenced by her and her ideas and New Zealand children are very much the better for her life and work."

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Election Day: Make Sure You're A Part Of It!

Saturday 20 September, is election day, and New Zealanders’ last chance to have a say on who leads the country for the next three years.

“The people and parties we elect tomorrow will be making the decisions that affect us, our families and our communities,” says Robert Peden, Chief Electoral Officer. “It doesn’t get much more important than that, and we need all New Zealanders to use their voice and vote.”

Voting places will be open from 9.00am until 7.00pm on election day. The busiest time at voting places is usually 9.00am - 11.00am.

“Take your EasyVote card with you when you go to vote, as it will make voting faster and easier, and vote close to home if you can. But don’t worry if you forget your card, or didn’t receive one, because as long as you are enrolled to vote, your voice will be heard,” says Mr Peden. More>>

 

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news