Our Learning

About our curriculum

Marist Catholic School, Herne Bay uses the NZ Curriculum, effective pedagogy and collaborative practices to give our children the best possible educational opportunities. 

Areas of Learning: 

  • Religious Education
  • English 
  • Mathematics
  • Aotearoa NZ Histories
  • The Arts
  • Health and Physical Education
  • Science
  • Social Sciences
  • Technology
  • Learning Languages 

Curriculum Principles

The New Zealand Curriculum Principles put the student at the centre of teaching and learning, asserting that they experience a curriculum that engages and challenges them; is forward-looking and inclusive and affirms New Zealand’s unique identity. 

The New Zealand Curriculum identifies five key competencies:

  • Thinking 
  • Using language, symbols and texts 
  • Managing self 
  • Relating to others 
  • Participating and contributing 

Literacy and Mathematics 

Strong literacy and maths skills provide a foundation for learning, so students can enjoy full and meaningful lives secure in their identities, languages, cultures, and values. These foundational skills help sustain their wellbeing and that of their whānau and communities. They are critical factors in the learning journey from early learning right through to the end of secondary education and beyond.

We pride ourselves on catering for individual students. Deliberate teaching through small group workshops happens every day in our classrooms.  We believe in flexible grouping where children are grouped based on a variety of criteria.  This could be, for example, ability groups, mixed ability or interest groups.  Groups change regularly to meet the needs of learners.


Our students develop their capacity to learn further languages and explore different world views in relation to their own. We have whānau from more than 30 different cultural backgrounds and we provide many opportunities to celebrate our traditions and heritage.  We have a  cultural groups, including a Kapa Haka group.  Te reo Māori, the indigenous language of New Zealand, is a taonga and protected under Te Tiriti o Waitangi.  Students will be given the opportunity to learn te reo and tikanga Māori and communicate this understanding with others, while demonstrating an awareness of the school’s Catholic Character.

Useful links

Religious Education 

In Catholic schools, Religious Education is teaching and learning what the Catholic Church believes and teaches – it aims to enable children to understand and appreciate how people live, pray and celebrate and how they can respond freely to God according to their gift of faith. The NZ RE programme reflects the understanding that from ‘learning about Jesus’, children can grow to ‘love Jesus and want to follow him as a disciple’. Evidence of this growth can be seen as they share the outcomes of their learning through their prayer, stories, artworks, games, drama, digital learning, music and scripture activities.

Digital Learning 

Our goal is to ensure that all learners have the opportunity to become digitally capable individuals. This provides a focus on students building their skills so they can be innovative creators of digital solutions rather than ‘device users’.  While we limit the ‘screen time’ of our students they are expected to be digitally literate and independent before they leave for college.