Melanie – Manager

My name is Melanie Metson and I am the owner and manager of Pohutukawa Kindergarten. My lifelong passion has been working with small children, and I always dreamed of owning my own kindergarten. I find children to be honest, open and so eager to learn. My philosophy is based on respect and I believe that if we respect each child as an individual and support them to respect themselves, others and the environment, then we are giving the future leaders of our society the tools to create a happy, peaceful and productive world. I am the mum of two precious little children – Cooper and Grace.

Olivia – Head Teacher (Ellerslie)

My name is Olivia Irwin. I come to Pohutukawa with over 12 years teaching experience in various Early Childhood settings. I have a degree in Psychology and Education and a Grad Dip in Teaching. I have a beautiful daughter Mia, who is the light of my life. Mia is currently attending Ellerslie Primary School. We love the outdoors and spending time with friends and family. I am passionate about teaching. I find the pre-school age to be one of inspiration, wonder and joyous freedom. It is always rewarding to see the children so engaged in their learning journey and to know that I am providing them with a nurturing, loving and stimulating environment.


My name is Lily Moon. I am from Korea and have been in New Zealand since 2011. I completed my Bachelor of Teaching (ECE) at New Zealand Tertiary College in 2014. I live in Newmarket with my mother who is a music teacher.  This means that I can play a variety of different musical instruments. We are both very happy to call New Zealand our new home. I love music and travelling so much that I have been to more than 10 different countries. I believe that every child has unique potential and fundamental goodness, hence I love to stimulate their unlimited capabilities in daily practice.


My name is Wendy Broadbent. I joined Pohutukawa Kindergarten in January 2014. I have 12 years experience as an Early Childhood Swim Instructor for various swim schools in Auckland. Joining the team here is a great way to broaden my experiences with young children. I thoroughly enjoy watching and helping them play, learn, discover and seeing them grow, but I especially love their smiles. I have a daughter Sarah-Jane and a son Jamie.


Kia Ora, my name is Annie Holmes. I completed my Bachelor of Education (ECE) in 2013. I enjoy travelling, playing Netball, keeping fit and spending time with family and friends. I arrived back from teaching and living in the UK in September 2018. I believe the first 5 years of life is the most critical for a child’s learning and development and thoroughly enjoy being part of their learning journeys. I am enthusiastic about providing young children with rich opportunities and experiences to help them reach their full potential as they transition to school.


Sarah – Head Teacher (Glendowie)

My name is Sarah Brown. I have been teaching under 5 since 1997. I began with Pohutukawa in 2016. I have a Bachelor of teaching from Auckland university. I have 3 children, two boys and a girl. I have a passion for working with children through respectful relationships. I love the arts and am inspired to extend children through the visual arts. I have a background that has been influenced by our indigenous culture, and aesthetic environment.