Te Pihinga House Teachers

For children 2-6 years.

Lucy Hayes

Head Teacher

Kia Ora, my name is Lucy Hayes and I am the Head Teacher at Daisies - Te Pihinga whare. I was an Education Leader for 5 years at Daisies - Te Purapura whare before we expanded. I am a fully qualified and registered teacher and hold a Bachelor of Teaching (Early Childhood Education). My professional interests include professional development facilitation, research and engaging in dialogue and review processes that focus on positive learning outcomes for young children in Aotearoa/New Zealand.  

I have been part of the Daisies whanau since the first centre opened in 2008. I have played the role of both parent and teacher and thus greatly appreciate the high quality education and care that underpins the Daisies philosophy.  

I am a firm believer in children being independent, inquisitive and knowledgeable members of society and I enjoy being witness to children exploring and making sense of the world. I have a particular interest in all forms of literacy, strengthening relationships between home and centre and promoting a peaceful and empowering learning environment for both tamariki and kaiako. I value the diverse passions and strengths that tamariki and kaiako bring to Daisies.

I can often be found at the beach in the summertime! I enjoy cooking, theatrics, travelling and spending time with my wonderful family and friends.


Meg Kwan

Education Leader

Kia Ora! My name is Meg. When I finished college I was lucky enough to get a position as a teaching assistant in an early childhood centre and fell in love with the job. Since then I have been working towards my Bachelor in Early Childhood Education and am now in my last (3rd) year. This is a big year for me and I’m very excited to be sharing it with the Daisies whānau. 

I have grown up and lived in Johnsonville most of my life. I am one of two children and have always had pets in the house. Other than teaching I enjoy music and reading, getting out and about in the city, shopping and just spending time with friends. Travel is also a passion of mine. 

My family is quite small but I enjoy spending time with them and they play a very important part in my life. For this reason I really value and think there is great benefit to the tamariki and whānau getting involved in the centre and love that Daisies is a place that values family so highly. I am also a strong believer in allowing children to take the lead in their education and respecting them as capable, curious individuals.  The first five years of a child’s life are so important for their future and I strive to provide high quality education and care which  is worthy of the important role we teachers play. I consider myself very fortunate to work in an environment where the values and beliefs are so close to my own.


Judith Urry


Hello everyone, my name is Judith.

After many years teaching in the primary sector I have made a move to teaching in early childhood education and I am really enjoying working at Daisies. 

I originally trained as a teacher in Wellington and have since taught in Taranaki, Wellington and in the UK. Almost all of my teaching experience has been in the early years (4-8yrs) and I am passionate about children learning through play. Knowing more about how children learn in their formative years has led me on this journey to Daisies and I learning so much from working with younger children. 

I have a strong belief about the importance of learning through exploration and investigation. I value the opportunities to listen to children, hear and see their wonderings and love to create further learning opportunities from these observations. I enjoy being outside with children, exploring the natural world and helping children discover more about their environment. I also believe strong foundations for learning can be built through sharing books and singing songs and being creative and I love doing all these things. 

I am a teacher first and foremost because I love working with children. Building trust and strong relationships is essential and I have always strived to value and cherish each child I have taught. Working with parents, families and teachers in a collaborative way is also extremely important and I am enjoying getting to know all the kaiako and families at Daisies.


Penny England


Kia ora koutou katoa, my name is Penny and I am really excited about becoming a member of the team at Daisies. I have both early childhood and primary experience and I have currently come from being a junior primary school teacher in Porirua East. I have a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Education with a post-graduate diploma in Primary teaching.I am looking forward to using the skills, knowledge and experience I have gained in my primary teaching and to use these in the next part of my journey as a kaiako at Daisies.


I have a passion for learning and enjoying creating meaningful experiences enabling children to flourish as critical thinkers and lifelong learners.  I enjoy facilitating children to develop an appreciation for papatuanuku where they understand the role of a kaitiaki, where the environment can be sustained for future generations.


I grew up in Wellington and have spent time living overseas in London, Edinburgh and Western Australia. I now enjoy spending time in my garden at my Titahi Bay home and walking around the many options of our beautiful coastline with friends and family.

Deirdre Van Duyl

Reliever Teacher

Tena Koutou
Ko Deirdre toku ingoa
No Wellington ahau

Kia ora, my name is Deirdre and I feel very privileged and delighted to have been part of the Daisies teaching team/whānau since we opened in October 2008.

I have a Kindergarten Teaching Diploma and many years’ experience in a variety of early childhood education settings. I am extremely passionate about children’s learning and about providing the best possible learning outcomes for them.

I believe that communication between home and the centre is vital as we work together to ensure that all children explore their full potential and grow up to be competent and confident learners and communicators.

I am particularly interested in the curriculum areas of music, science, literacy and numeracy. I am a key teacher for the older group of children (Whanake group). My focus for them is building the foundation for a smooth transition to school. I believe that curiosity, investigation, perseverance, and problem solving are all very important learning dispositions for our children as they work on generating more complex working theories about the world around them. I live with my husband in Tawa. Our children are all adults and have left home. In my spare time I like to make cards, go to the gym, read, knit and play cards with friends.


Saori Chin


Kia ora, Hello, Konnichiwa, my name is Saori Chin. I am originally from Osaka, Japan and I moved to Wellington to live in 2009. When I was in Japan, I was an English teacher to children aged from 2 to 15 years old and I truly enjoyed teaching and the company of my students which led me to start looking at early child education as my career in New Zealand. I have worked at Daisies from 2009 to 2014 and I am privileged to come back to Daisies again after taking care of my 2 children these past few years. 

I am passionate about observing children and providing them the opportunities to enable them to build up their confidence and self-esteem. I strongly believe that these attributes are significant for their journey as a life-long learner.  I also value seeing children grow each day and I am grateful to have the opportunity to share these moments with the families at Daisies. Children are our future and I am honoured to support this significant period of their life.

In my spare time, I definitely enjoy family activities like going to the zoo, visiting Te papa, playing in the parks and visiting families and friends etc.  I also love New Zealand’s nature so I like going for bush walks too. 


Andrea Wood


Kia ora tatou, my name is Andrea.

I started at Daisies as a full-time reliever and now am delighted to be a permanent qualified and certificated teacher with the older tamariki at Te Pihinga. 

I am from a large family and have four children of my own, so I love the family atmosphere of Daisies. I believe relationships built on care, trust and respect between tamariki, whanau and kaiako are the foundation for tamariki to develop a strong sense of belonging and identity in who they are. 

I believe an important part of teaching is helping each child to see themselves, their whanau and culture, their uniqueness and strengths, and their views as valuable and important. 

I am passionate about tamariki exploring, and seeing themselves as kaitiaki of, the great outdoors. Empowering tamariki to lead their own learning by exploring ideas, investigating, trying new things, asking questions and embracing challenge come from this passion and my belief of tamariki being curious, capable and responsible individuals. 

As well as teaching and reading, I enjoy spending time with my family, going for walks, skiing, and tramping. 


Jen Hughes


Kia ora, my name is Jen (Jenny) Hughes and I have recently completed a Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Education through Massey University. I am passionate about the growth, development and learning of all children.

I have a passion for art and our natural environment and I would like to offer plenty of opportunities for children to explore, investigate and engage in creativity and enjoy all that these experiences can offer to their knowledge and learning. Supporting children to learn how to communicate, value and respect everyone’s contribution, share knowledge, build strong relationshipsand be inclusive of each other is fundamental to my teaching philosophy. I want to offer equitable learning experiences for all children, enable and encourage regardless of challenges that they may face.

I like to provide plenty of opportunities by utilising an integrated curriculum that is enriched by play to enable children to be capable and confident learners. I believethis enables children to develop critical thinking skills, resilience, creativity, empathy and independence while evolving inquiring and confident learning dispositions.

I have worked with children for over 15 years as a nanny and my background is in nursing and art. I live with my partner, Brian, and our two beautiful dogs, Clio and Callisto. I like to be creative, listen to music, immersemyself in nature and enjoy going to art exhibitions and spending time with friends and family. I look forward to getting to know you, your children and your community.