Tauihi Team (Yr 3/4)
My name is Sara Ripia and I teach Year 3 in Room 12. I completed my teaching qualifications in early childhood and primary teaching at Waikato University. I started my teaching career at TAPS in 2007 and took a break to have children and do some part time teaching at different schools in the Waipa area. I am married to Daniel and together we have 3 children, Alexis who is in her first year at Intermediate and Taniora and Ariana who are at TAPS in Teams 3 and 4. I particularly love working with children who have difficulties with their learning and seeing the pride they have when they experience success. In my free time I enjoy reading, cooking, spending time with my family in our second home of Raglan, and having a laugh with friends.
Teacher Room 13
Hello, I am Erin Westgate and I teach in a year 3 class in Room 13. I studied at Waikato University and completed my teaching degree in 2009. My first school I taught at was Te Rapa Primary School where I stayed for 3 years before going on maternity leave. After having Milla and Jackson we shifted back to Te Awamutu where my story begins with TAPS. I began with relieving and then a shared position before moving into full time in 2019. Milla and Jackson are both at TAPS and love haing mum on hand for cuddles. My huge love in teaching is anything creative and arty. The Arts is definitely my passion and particularly dance. Before doing my teaching degree I ran a dance studio here in Te Awamutu and Otorohanga. I love productions and seeing students get a buzz out of performing.
Teacher - Room 14
Dip Tchng, B Ed
I have been teaching at TAPS for 11 years and am excited to be part of Tauihi Team again this year. I especially enjoy teaching Literacy and Inquiry. I love working with children as they make positive steps in their learning and develop as confident life long learners. My out of school passions include a variety of outdoor activities, visiting new places, and most of all spending time with my family. I am looking forward to lots of new learning and adventures throughout 2021.
Teacher - Room 15
Bachelor of Teaching (Primary); Postgraduate Certificate in Digital and Collaborative Learning
Kia ora, my name is Michelle and I teach Year 3 in Room 15. I completed my Bachelor of Teaching (Primary) at the University of Waikato in 2015. During this time, I was fortunate enough to complete my final placement at TAPS. I am now in my sixth year teaching within Team 3 at TAPS.
I am particularly passionate about teaching Literacy, Digital Technology and Art. I enjoy helping students to become confident in their abilities and see themselves as lifelong learners. This year, I have begun studying towards a Masters of Education specialising in Literacy through the University of Canterbury.
In my free time, I enjoy playing golf, helping to foster junior golf in the Waikato, spending time with my family and reading. I’m looking forward to a fantastic year of learning!
Teacher - Room 16 - Team Leader
Bachelor of Teaching
Kia ora, my name is Wendy and I teach Year 4 in Room 16 and am also the proud Team Leader of an amazing team of teachers.. I completed my Bachelor of Teaching (Primary) at Waikato University. I am in my fifteenth year at Te Awamutu Primary School and there is no other place I would rather be. Before coming to TAPS I worked at Te Mata Primary School near Raglan for four and half years.
My passion for teaching lies in mathematics and Growth mindset where I can encourage students to be the best they can be. I enjoy sharing my interest in sports such as table tennis and hockey. In my spare time I like to spend time with family and going to the movies. I also enjoy trying out new cafes where I can find the perfect cappuccino.
Room 5B Teacher
I am enjoying teaching a creative group of year 4’s in Team Tauihi. This is my second year teaching at TAPS, prior to this I taught at Tauranga Intermediate School. Myself and my two children made the move to Te Awamutu just before lockdown and have been enjoying the change of pace ever since. Prior to teaching I came from a sport background with exciting roles at Sport Bay of Plenty and NZ Rugby. In my spare time I am usually on missions with my children and partner, hunting, fishing or reading a good book.