May 2017 School Journals

Our CE, Alex, recently reflected on how educational publishing in New Zealand has nurtured a nation of young readers for The Sapling.
Check out this excerpt.


It was a winding road that led me to educational publishing.

After 12 years in the film industry – 18-hour days, six-day weeks, weekends, nights, months away from home – I decided I needed a life. So I went primary teaching (cue snorts of derisive laughter from teachers across New Zealand). And while teaching certainly didn’t provide me with a life of leisure, it did give me a new passion, not just for the actual hands-on teaching but also for the abundance of rich literacy materials that filled my school’s resource room. I wallowed in them, especially the local content.

After further study, I joined Learning Media and learned firsthand the intricacies of educational publishing and the level of pedagogical and publishing expertise that goes into the books in our classrooms. It was there that I also became more aware of the part educational publishing plays in nurturing a nation of readers.

New Zealand’s education system

Both within New Zealand and internationally, our education system has had a huge impact on students’ learning. We’re well-known for the quality of our teachers, our progressive curriculum, and our educational publishing sector’s innovative approaches to learning (such as the development of the “big book” for shared reading and 8–16 page small books for small-group guided reading).

Our system ensures that students experience a curriculum that acknowledges New Zealand’s unique heritage – both our bicultural identity and our much more recent multiculturalism. Therefore, teachers need access to rich materials that value local knowledge and ensure that students’ learning is relevant and meaningful. Educational resources created and written in New Zealand, for New Zealanders, have a special part to play in supporting student success and developing what The New Zealand Curriculum terms ‘confident, connected, lifelong learners’.

Read more about The Value of Educational Publishing.