Starting at Kenakena School

Beat the Bell

You need to be at school before the bell goes at 8:55am.

At Kenakena School our day gets underway once that bell has gone. In the interests of making sure all children have the right supervision, we prefer them not to arrive at school before 8.30am.

To allow them plenty of time to socialise and get themselves set up for their day, they’d need to be at school by 8:45am.

Play Time & Morning tea is from 10.40am to 11.15am, the lunch hour is 12.45pm to 1.40pm, and school finishes at 3.00pm.

Please notify the school by 9.30am if your child will be absent. Click here to report an absence online. In the interest of your children’s safety, the school will try to contact caregivers to determine children’s whereabouts if the school has not been notified.

Information for New Entrant Parents

School Visits

At Kenakena School we have a pre-entry programme for children about to start school. We try to work in conjunction with local preschools to give seminars on the “smooth transition to school” at least once a year. These seminars cover: Introduction of the New Entrant teachers, managing own clothes, shoes, lunch box, toileting, visits, a typical day at school, reading, writing, maths etc. On Wednesday mornings for 3 weeks prior to beginning school formally, the children come to school from 8:55 – 11:00am. This includes our PMP programme, some language based activities and morning tea time. It is proving most successful with actual school entry becoming a very smooth and happy occasion.

When your child comes for their first visit, could you please check at the office that they are enrolled and please bring their Birth Certificate,  and Record of Immunisation. Also on their first visit could you please make a time with your classsroom teacher to have their On Entry testing done. (This is one on one with a teacher and takes 3⁄4 of an hour).

On their first day of school could you please come to the office and let the office staff know that they are starting.

School starts/finishes

The school bell rings in the morning at 8:55 but children settle better if they are at school early enough to unpack their bags (independently) and still have time for a little play. School finishes at 3.00pm.

How can you help prepare your child for school?

  • To manage themselves independently.
  • Pack school bag.
  • Empty book bag when they get to school.
  • Manage their own shoes.
  • Be able to blow their nose effectively.
  • Encourage resilience.
  • Being able to deal with changes.
  • Be able to play and work with others.
  • Be able to communicate clearly.
  • To hear and enjoy rhyme, and learn the rhyme families.
  • Be able to identify differences in sounds around them.
  • Make a variety of sounds using their own voices.
  • To hear and enjoy rhyme, and learn the rhyme families.
  • Be able to identify differences in sounds around them.
  • Make a variety of sounds using their own voices.
  • To hear rhythm and be able to copy it in a variety of ways.
  • Recognise their name and write their name.
  • Be able to hold a pencil correctly.
  • To know that there are work times, and there are play times.

Information for Parents of New Students

Home Reading

Most nights the book bags will come home with some form of reading to share with you. Sometimes it will be their instructional text sometimes it will be chosen from their browsing basket and will be at an easy level. Please ensure the book is returned every day. Basic sight words will be sent home for your child to practice reading and spelling. Please set aside a regular time to share this reading. Listen to your child read and praise, praise, praise. Our aim is to create a LOVE of books and lead them towards being independent readers. This reading mileage is a vital part of early reading skill development.


It is compulsory for students to wear sunhats in Terms 1 and 4.

They must choose a hat that protects the ears, face and back of the neck from the sun.

Please note: caps do not provide enough protection and are not acceptable.

Students not wearing an appropriate hat will be required to stay in the shade.

Lunch orders

Children are able to purchase a variety of lunches via the school on Fridays only. 

Lunch orders are placed via the online payment shop hosted by KINDO NZ.  Sorry NO cash or eftpos orders are permitted.

The order can be done in advance and must be received before the 9am deadline on the Friday morning.

New users to Kindo can sign up and find more information on the website or once you have enrolled at Kenakena School, you can  follow the link below:

Money (not lunch orders)

Please use our Kindo Online School Shop to easily view, and make payment for all your child’s camps, trips, sport and activity fees.

Otherwise you can send money, when required, to school in a sealed, named envelope and this is put into the red box next to the school office.


Our school policy is NO sweets. Please do not send sweets to school in your child’s lunchbox. Lollies and bubblegum should be kept for home. Thank you for your support with this matter. We encourage children to eat sandwiches first before their fruit and biscuits and our school policies is that lunch rubbish should go home with their lunch boxes.

Kenakena School supports the Litterless Lunchbox initiative:—litterless-lunchbox-v1.1.pdf


Please name all clothing, including shoes. We often have more than person wearing the same item. If your child does misplace something, check in class and the Lost Property box which is situated by Room 10. Including some spare items such as knickers and shorts is a good idea in case of accidents.


The school newsletter link is emailed to you and put on this website and our facebook page every 2 weeks on a Thursday.


We have a wonderful library which children visit each week during their set library time. The children are allowed to choose one book to keep at home for one week.


New Entrants: 

A first report will be sent home sometime after their first 3 weeks of school.

For years 1-8:

We use the “Seesaw” Application for what we call “The Learning Snapshot” reporting. 

Seesaw is used to provide you with regular examples of the work your children are producing.  Children often post their own work, which can include comments from them and from their teachers.  This allows regular opportunities for you to engage with your children by discussing their work with them and writing your own feedback.  What we want to achieve is to give you regular Learning Snapshots of your child’s learning and achievement that are accurate and up-to-date rather than you having to wait six months to hear about it as with a written report.

Also we will hold parent/teacher conferences at the end of terms 1 and 3.  

Parent Helpers

Help is always needed, there are a variety of jobs that need doing like, putting away readers, supervising small groups and making resources. Please come and see us if you are available to help in anyway.


We always welcome cardboard, ice-cream containers, yoghurt pottles, magazines, newspaper etc for use in the classroom. find information