Primary Care

Primary care is the core philosophy of our infant & toddler classrooms providing high quality childcare


A “Primary Caregiver” is the child’s special teacher who is responsible for care rituals, observations, communication with families and setting appropriate learning objectives. This does not mean that the child and their primary caregiver maintain an exclusive relationship. It allows the primary caregiver to become the in-centre expert on the child.


Each child is assigned a primary caregiver before they start their pre visits. A primary caregiver has a focus group and a buddy. A buddy is another teacher who works alongside the primary caregiver with their focus group of children. The buddy knows the children and their routines to ensure the child’s needs are met at times if the primary caregiver is unavailable.


Infant needs are met foremost by their primary caregiver and then by their buddy teacher in order for them to establish a strong bond from the beginning. If a child has a preference to a particular teacher, changes may be made to acknowledge and respect this child’s feelings.



Infant and toddler care rituals are valued as special times and valuable learning opportunities

Teachers are flexible throughout the day and prioritise children’s needs, parents needs and break times to ensure consistent care.


Primary caregivers recognise learning and plan for each individual child, ensuring positive experiences. Within the team is a support system incorporating consistent primary caregivers who know children well and support their team members when needed. Relief teachers unfamiliar to the children do not participate in care routines. Relievers are encouraged to interact with children and support the teaching team with daily housekeeping tasks.


A caring and nurturing childcare environment is provided for our infants and toddlers. We recognise that each child’s emotional security is paramount and that this directly affects their learning and development. We maintain a peaceful and unhurried environment. Our daily routine is relaxed and flexible, allowing for each child’s home routines to be followed as much as possible to ease transitions between home and centre.



I really enjoyed visiting your centre when I was visiting our family earlier this year. It was great to meet the staff when I delivered my grandson one day and to observe how they knew all of the children so well. They were concerned about where they all were and what they were doing. I especially liked the way they took some time to have a chat with me about my grandson, while keeping a roving eye on all the children.

As we don’t live in the Manawatu area, we really appreciate my daughter-in-law sending us through the recounts that the teachers write about our grandson’s exciting and energetic activities at Puddleducks’. These recounts are amazing. We love the way that they really capture the essence of our grandson by including detailed descriptions of very focused and well managed activities and direct quotes as well. These bring a huge smile to our faces. I make a copy of the recounts and display them proudly on my photo board. All other family members like to check them out too!