Our Spaces

Our school is an Innovative Learning Environment (ILE).  We want to renew, re-imagine and reinvent teaching and learning practices. We want to be designers of learning within an ecosystem that includes both the activity and the outcomes, of the learning.

Each learning space in our school is designed for different purposes yet is flexible.  See below for descriptions of our Learning Habitats, Te Manawa, Multi-space and our Outdoor Areas.

Learning Habitats

Whakatauki: “Tangata ako ana i te whare, te turanga ki te marae, tau ana” which translates to “a person who is taught at home (habitat) will stand collected on the Marae (school)”. Each of our learning spaces will be a ‘habitat’. A habitat is a space and a place for our people (learners) and learning. A place to:

  • live, learn and grow
  • belong
  • make connections
  • be curious
  • be collaborative
  • build capabilities

Click on the buttons below to go to the Learning Habitat Websites.

We envision that the Learners will decide on what kind of Habitat each will be, together. We are also working with the Nga Tai Iwi to uncover the names of our learning habitats and will hopefully reveal these once Stage 2 is finished.  Our school has a number of  Learning Habitats (each is the equivalent size of 3 traditional classrooms) where Learning Coaches will work collaboratively with the Learners negotiating personalised learning pathways using our learning model.

Each of our Habitats has 4 niches: MakerSpace; MySpace; MediaSpace; and MeetingSpace. These four niches are purpose built but remain flexible so they may be used in a variety of ways. In addition, we will make use of Te Manawa, our shared Library at Ormiston Junior College, our Multispace (Hall) and our outdoor spaces.  In addition, the learners may use our staff kitchen or the multispace kitchen for cooking purposes.


Purpose – is a creation zone in which to learn collaboratively or independently.

Learners may – imagine, innovate, construct, design, prototype, develop, craft, explore, make, deconstruct, build, model, draw…


Purpose – is a quiet, contemplative, reflective space to do independent learning

Learners may – read, write, do an assessment, contemplate, publish, plan, design, draw, relax, meditate, research…


Purpose – is a space to create content, practise, perform and explore

Learners may –  sing, dance, practice, perform, film, act, edit, mix & mash, produce…


Purpose – carry out learning conversations with others and engage in focused-shared collaborative learning

Learners may –  discuss, write, map, write, construct, design, plan, organise…


Purpose – This is a large multi-purpose space which will be used for a number of activities such as indoor games, whole school assemblies, productions and drama events.

Learners may –  play, compete, perform, practice, gather, create, evaluate, sing, dance, run… This space can be booked by members of our community –  contact us to make an inquiry.

Te Manawa

Purpose – “Te Manawa” is the heart of our school.  It is a space that is free for learners to gather and relax, play games, meet to socialise, access books/multi-media and where we will strive to grow our reading culture. It is a space for our educators to collaborate and it is also used by our community for English lessons, playgroups, Chinese lessons etc.

Learners may – read, make, create, publish, construct, write… It is important for us that Te Manawa is the one place where the learners feel they can’t fail. We are negotiating a combined library with OJC in 2017.

Outdoor Spaces

Purpose – Our outdoor areas will be designed to be natural and sustainable. Our learners have been intimately involved with this design.

This includes our gardens, worm farms, composting and a naturalised playground. The learners have loved creating and collaborating in our ‘loose parts’ playground. In addition, the learners have access to a field, courts and covered play areas.