Teacher farewells young charges

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The thing retiring school teacher Robyn Lunn will miss the most is watching her young charges grow and develop in her classroom at Waihola District School.

“They are so fast and so enthusiastic to learn new things,” she said.

“Things happen quite rapidly for them during their first three years at school.”

For the past 40 years, Mrs Lunn has taught at schools in the Otago region.

Graduating from Dunedin Teachers College in 1976, she headed into Central Otago for her first teaching position.

“In those days the teachers college found you your first job. They gave me three choices and I picked Alexandra Primary.”

After a couple of years, she took time away from teaching to raise her three children.

“However, when my children started going to school, they [teaching staff] found out I was a teacher, and asked me to help out at schools in the Waipori Falls and Berwick areas.”

She took on part-time teaching roles when school principals needed to spend more time on growing administrative demands.

“It was a nice fit. I could help out at different schools on different days and still have time for my family.”

In 1999, she joined the Waihola District School shortly after Milburn and Waihola primary schools merged, later becoming new entrant teacher.

“Being at a small school is like being in a big family.

“It’s really about helping children learn how to look after each other .. at small schools you get to know the children, you have them for three years so you soon know the child and then you learn about the family, as well.”

Mrs Lunn’s retirement goals were to spend more time with her recently retired husband, Peter, and visit grandchildren in the North Island.