Our Tutors

Suzanne Drury-Turnbull

Suzanne Drury-Turnbull

  • With a diploma in Teaching ECE; and Aperfield Montessori Diploma in ECE. Formerly a Supervisor of Montessori Horizons Preschool Riwaka, Suzanne has over 30 years of experience in working with children falling between birth and 6 years.

    She has worked in various Maternity hospitals well as the Neonatal unit at Christchurch Women’s Hospital. Suzanne has also worked in various Montessori preschools both privately owned and community run. She has worked in a primary school setting, in a resource room run for children requiring learning support and as a SPELD teacher working with children with learning difficulties. 

    Suzanne teaches directed distance learning Introductory Book 1, and Book 2 courses in Christchurch.

Christine Kirkeby

Christine Kirkeby

  • Christine Kirkeby is the owner and manager of Bella Montessori at Kaiapoi. I have managed and operated a number of Montessori Preschools including Learning Curves Montessori Redwood and St Albans and Garden Grove Montessori in Timaru.  I have also worked for the Education Review Office and the Ministry of Education as a Senior Advisor in Early Childhood.

    I have a Masters in Educational Leadership and completed my Aperfield Montessori Diploma in 2014.

    I joined the Aperfield Trust in December 2013.

Cam Mountsier-Cole

Cam Mountsier-Cole

  • Cam Mountsier-Cole was first introduced to Montessori Education while studying at a university in DesMoines, Iowa USA in 1979. She loved the geography of the area and decided from that moment on to train as a Montessori Teacher.

    She attended the Montessori Education Centre Association- Seton in Chicago, Illinois and received her diploma in 1982. Her career has been in the Montessori Education since then. In 1991 Cam came to New Zealand to teach in Palmerston North. About then 16 years ago she and her husband opened their own school in Miramar, Wellington.

    Cam recently sold her school in Wellington and she and her 2 teenage children have moved back to the States.  Cam is now a member of the Oregon Montessori Association board and has purchased a Montessori Infant/Toddler programme in Portland, Oregon.

Di Fenwick

Di Fenwick

  • Di Fenwick is one of the founding members of the Aperfield Montesssori Trust and was one of our first AST tutors at the Christchurch College of Education. Di was a teacher at the old Courtyard Montessori preschool in the early 1990′s before she and her family moved to Beijing, China. 

    While in Beijing, China Di trained in English and worked as a Second Language teacher spending five years in teaching at the International School in Beijing. Returning to New Zealand in 2001 Di has continued to work in the ESOL area. In 2007 Di completed the National Certificate in Adult Education and Training. She renewed her interests in Montessori by rejoining the Aperfield Montessori Trust Board serving from 2004 - 2014.

    Also Di has been a Distance Learning tutor and assessor for both the practical and written assessments and supports the Trust's tutors with her mentoring and moderating roles.

Teresa Huggins

Teresa Huggins

  • I discovered Montessori while living in London. I trained at London Montessori Centre and graduated in 1999. After returning to NZ, I went on to do my BEd with AUT and finished it in 2006. I have been working with children for over 25 years, with the last 13 spent at Montessori Children’s House in Wellington. I am now spending time walking my two dogs, helping to run my husband’s business and a bit of relief teaching. She is a Practical Assessor at our Workshop.

Debbie Cocks

Debbie Cocks

  • I discovered Montessori while studying at Christchurch Teachers College, where I learned the history of Maria Montessori and her educational philosophy. I was then very fortunate to complete a four-week teaching practice placement at Airdhmor Montessori Preschool. The Centre’s peaceful atmosphere and the ability the teachers had to nurture child-centred learning amongst the children impressed me.

    This led to my decision to train as a Montessori teacher through the Aperfield trust and presently I work as a team leader within a Montessori Preschool.

    I obtained a Bachelor of Learning in Early Childhood in 2008 and the Aperfield Montessori Diploma in 2012. I am presently studying towards a Certificate in Infant and Toddler Mental Health through Rangi Ruru Early Childhood College.

Toni McKenzie

Toni McKenzie

  • I trained as an Early Childhood Teacher at Rangi Ruru Early Childhood College and was awarded a Diploma in Early Childhood Education. I began teaching in an Early Childhood Centre in 2000 and went on to do my Bachelor of Teaching and Learning by correspondence through Christchurch College of Education. I am also a registered teacher.

    I have always had a strong interest in Montessori Education and began teaching in a Montessori Centre. With the support and help of the Aperfield Montessori Trust I was able to complete the Montessori Diploma. I had a career in Montessori Education for four years before starting my own family. I am a mother of three boys and enjoy spending time with them at home incorporating some aspects of Montessori education into our home environment.

    I am very passionate about the Montessori philosophy and enjoy sharing my knowledge and skills that I have acquired with other students.

Julie Batstone

Julie Batstone

  • Julie Batstone has had a wide range of educaional experiences. She recently retired from the Education Review Office in Christchurch where she held the postions of Review officer and Peer reviewer for thirteen years. During this time, Julie evaluated Early Childhood, including Montessori Early Childhood and Schools, Homes, Private and State schools. She was a member of the team who trialled and edited ERO's, He Pou Tataki, How ERO reviews Early Childhood Services in 2012. Julie completed the Post Graduate Diploma of Evaluation in 2010.

    Julie's previous experience as an educator includes; Primary School Principal, Teachers College Lecturer in Technology and Professional Studies and Mathematics Advisor for Primary Schools in the South Island. 

    Julie is a registered Marriage Celebrant and completed the Certificate of Celebrant Studies in 2016. She joined the Aperfield rust in August 2017.

Shubha Narayan

Shubha Narayan

  • My journey into Montessori started about 27 years ago when I did my AMI 3-6 and 6-9 training in Bangalore, India. The catalyst for this was my son, and his being in a Montessori school. I am the mother of three children, the youngest of whom is 17 years old now. I have had the privilege of setting up a Montessori primary unit and a Montessori Children's House. I have had the experience of working with children between the ages of 3-13, as well as adults. Currently I co-head and am the professional leader of Nova Montessori School and the Children's House. I have been working with adult students, guiding their Montessori journeys since 2003. If a Montessorian were to have favourites, mine would be Montessori math and Montessori language curriculum. The spark of the 'aha' moment, either in the children or in the adults who are immersed in Montessori rejuvenates me. Education is an aid to life and Montessori is a way of life, it brings about a respect for oneself, for the objects and materials and for the environment. To be able to support the growth, development and awareness of the child is a privilege that I do not take lightly. "Our care of the children should be governed not by the desire to 'make them learn things', but by the endeavour always to keep burning within them the light which is called intelligence." (Maria Montessori)

Natalie Collins

Natalie Collins

  • Natalie Collins, a mother of 2 children has had wonderful times at Montessori schools in Christchurch (foundation and Primary). She gained her Montessori Diploma at the London Montessori Centre in 1994, then,  after returning to New Zealand, went on to study for a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning. In 2011 Natalie studied Infant and Toddler Mental Health through Rangi Ruru Early Childhood College and is a keen advocate for creating environments, which enhance emotional wellbeing in children.

    Natalie has previously been a tutor for our directed distance learning courses in Christchurch and is a distance tutor. Natalie has also tutored the Environmental Studies and the Arts curriculum at the full practical workshop.

Anna Richardson

Anna Richardson

  • Tena koutou. I trained at St Nicholas Montessori College in London in the mid 1980’s.  Returned to New Zealand and spent the next ten years working as a teacher and manager at the Abberley Park Montessori preschool. During those very early years of Montessori in New Zealand, I was very fortunate to work alongside Binda Goldsbrough and support her with the introduction of the Aperfield course. I was the chairperson of the Montessori Association of Christchurch during the late 80’s which was an enormously exciting times for the growth of Montessori throughout New Zealand.  Three children later and a move to Auckland I continued to work in a Montessori preschool.  The last 7 years I have been working in a large college with students who require additional literacy support.