Models Team

Shane Tamblyn (BA, GradDipTchg (sec), GradDipTchg) - Senior Teacher - Model 1A

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Shane most enjoys teaching literacy, social science and visual art.  He strongly believes in engaging with all learners as individuals, and works to develop student agency in his class programmes.  Children in his classroom are encouraged to take leadership roles and Shane provides plenty of opportunity for the children to learn from each other. 

Michele Nicolau (BEd, H DipTchg, PGDipTchg) - Senior Teacher - Model 1B

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Michele has a career-long and ongoing interest in investigating the latest research regarding teaching and learning and psychology.  Michele is trained in catering for the needs of gifted students, especially those who are twice exceptional or gifted plus. She works closely with parents to cater for individual needs.  She has been teaching in a junior Models class for many years and is a strong supporter of children developing their strengths and having a choice in their learning.  She believes learning through the arts, science and technology has a role in improving children’s well-being.  Michele enjoys creating dance and drama performances for families and planning project based learning topics for children, taking into account their interests.  This year Michele is teaching in Model 1B on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. 

Jessica Lovell (BEd) - Model 1B 

Jess has taught in a variety of school settings and is experienced working with students from all walks of life and believes the key to a successful year is developing strong relationships with students and their whānau. She is passionate about Science and The Outdoors and loves to integrate these into her classroom programme. Jess enjoys all aspects of teaching and learning but has strengths in teaching literacy and numeracy.  Jess teaches in Model 1B on Thursdays and Fridays.  Jess is also our sports faciliator this year. 

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Claire Spencer (BEd, DipTchg, Cert ESOL) - Senior Teacher, In-School Col Teacher - Model 2A

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Claire is passionate about the Models and the time they allow for the development of relationships with whānau and tamariki.  She provides an environment that allows children to develop their strengths through passion projects and provides opportunities for children to explore their own interests and build their learning toolbox along the way.  Claire values and celebrates the diversity of all learners and their cultural backgrounds empowering children to share their knowledge and experiences.  She is dedicated to the Pasifika Performance Group as a way of exploring Pasifika cultures and celebrating the arts.  Claire enjoys the outdoors and being able to share the wonders of nature with tamariki through science, EOTC experiences and the improvement of the school gardens/composting system through the Kaitiaki Club.  In addition to this, Claire is one of our within-schools Kāhui Āko teachers, and one of our Te Ao Māori and Cultural responsibilities curriculum leaders. 

Jo Henderson (BEd, DipTchg, Cert TEAL) - Senior Teacher, In-school CoL Teacher - Model 2B

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Jo is an experienced teacher with ACE teacher recognition.  She loves working in the Models environment where she gets to know the children and their families so well.  Jo and her students also love collaborating with Model 2A.  Jo is very experienced working with children with special needs and she has a special ability in creating an inclusive environment.  As our ELL Coordinator, Jo values having ELL (English Language Learners) in her class and enjoys seeing their progress.  She has a passion for literacy learning and has a wealth of experience and knowledge in this area.  In addition to this, Jo is one of our within-school Kāhui Āko teachers. 

Lisa Deed - Teaching Assistant

Lisa comes to George Street Normal School bringing a wealth of teaching experience.  Lisa is presently working with some of our younger children and enjoys seeing them experience success on a daily basis.  Nothing is ever a bother for Lisa!

Petra Pritchard - Teaching Assistant (B.F.A, P.G.DipOE, M.Phys.Ed, Cert 4 in SLD)

Petra enjoys the reciprocal connections between learner and educator.  She uses multi-sensory teaching strategies to support students educational outcomes.  As a Teacher Assistant in the Junior Models classroom, she supports students with English as a Second Language (ESL), and students with Specific Learning Disabilities.  

Maxim Dehlwes - Teaching Assistant

Maxim is currently completing a volunteer internship at our school, coming all the way from Germany.  We are loving having a male influence working alongside our akonga.   Maxim is working across the school and is participating in a variety of support roles as part of his internship.

Meg Schlaadt - Teaching Assistant 

Meg is a senior supervisor at Georgies.  She enjoys working with children and encouraging them to be the best they can beMeg is well known with our children and is a great asset to our Teacher Aide team.

Natalya Lally- Teaching Assistant 

Natalya recently joined George Street Normal and loves working with children.  She is incredibly positive and develops strong relationships with ākonga through her warm personable approach.  

What are Model Classes

Our Model classes are a special feature of George Street Normal School and reflect our association with the University of Otago.  A Model classroom offers the opportunity of a country flavour of education in a city environment.  There are four Model classes in our school.  Each Model has children covering three class levels, just like in many rural primary schools.


Junior & Senior Models:

There are two Junior Models for children in years 1 - 3 and two Senior Models for children in years 4 - 6.  

Model 1B (Y1 - Y3) and Model 1A (Y4 - Y6) operate as a pair.

Model 2B (Y1 - Y3) and Model 1B (Y4 - Y6) operate as a pair.

Each pair of Models functions similar to a two teacher country school.  The Models foster a 'family atmosphere' in which older pupils help care for their younger classmates (i.e. they develop a tuakana/teina relationship).



Admission to all Model classes is at the discretion of the Principal.  Consideration is given to:

As admission to the Models is restricted, parents who are interested in Models placement are urged to contact the school well in advance of their children beginning school. 


Quality Education:

Programmes of work taught and opportunities offered in the Model classes parallel those of the main school classes.  There are however additional benefits for some children being placed in smaller, mixed level groupings with greater individual attention.  All children in Model classes have the same opportunities as other similar aged children within the school for Education Outside the Classroom (EOTC), sports teams and cultural activities.  George Street Normal School is fortunate in being able to retain more than one form of class organisation for the benefit of children, parents, student teachers and teaching colleagues.