Professional Learning + Development

Facilitated by Mandy Jakich

Our courses are facilitated by Mandy Jakich. 


Mandy has taught in Primary and Intermediate schools for more than 20 years, was an Art Educator at Auckland Art Gallery for 4 years, is the Founder and CEO of Creative Matters and is a practising artist.

Mandy has facilitated courses in schools, at Kohia Centre - University of Auckland, and at Studio One, Toi Tu.

"Thank you Mandy for the wonderful art workshop you ran at our school recently.  The teachers were engaged and highly motivated as evidenced by the  way the majority of our staff utilised all they learnt with you  into their classroom programmes immediately. 

They enjoyed the way you delivered your programme, and also the freedom you gave them to be creative while also learning some basic paint techniques. All were impressed with how the session catered for all levels of expertise.  They are looking forward to having another session with you."


Denise Haven, Deputy Principal, Waitakere Primary School

"The role of a creative leader is not to have all the ideas; it’s to create a culture where everyone can have ideas and feel they’re valued." Sir Ken Robinson

Our PLD motivates, empowers and enables primary teachers to teach visual arts in a way that stimulates their students to think creatively and critically, giving children rich opportunities to:

  • observe closely

  • respond and reflect

  • collaborate

  • take risks

  • solve problems

  • refine and modify techniques

  • make decisions

  • express themselves

  • create unique artworks

Encouraging Creativity through the Visual Arts:

In the Classroom

Taking commonly seen classroom art lessons which use an artist's work as a starting point, teachers will be taken through a rich, interactive creative process of exploring, experimenting, sharing, reflecting and creating - as well as learning visual arts techniques - so they can experience first hand how it feels to be supported through a process that encourages them to think creatively and results in the creation of their own unique artwork.

We will then work through authentic, cross curricular ways to implement this creative learning approach into our classrooms and visual arts programme.

Three Learning Options

Over 2 staff meetings at your school 


Splitting the course over two consecutive sessions of two hours works well - giving us time to refine the learning to suit your needs, for an even richer learning experience on the second session.

At a Teacher Only Day at your school


A 4 hour long hands-on PLD session is a great addition to a Teacher Only Day, encouraging communication and collaboration as well as the learning of new skills and approaches. And so good for the wellbeing of your teachers!

10am - 2.30pm

At Studio One Toi Tu in the holidays or on a Saturday


This is a good option if you are seeking individual or small group PLD rather than school wide, if you don't work in a school or you're from out of town. 

Encouraging Creativity through the Visual Arts:

Outside the Classroom

At Muriwai Beach \ West Auckland - A stunning black sand beach and native bush environment.


We will take you on a unique professional journey to experience ways to respond to an environment creatively and critically through environmental art and photography.

You will learn techniques for: demonstrating a creative process; verbalising and encouraging creative and critical thinking; making environmental artworks in response to the land and nature; taking photographs that capture elements in different ways.

We will develop understandings of visual arts elements and principles:

  • form

  • space

  • texture

  • composition

  • scale

  • shape, line, pattern

  • colour

  • contrast

  • materiality

  • balance

We will make links across the curriculum and discuss ways to implement these ideas into your classroom programme.

The photographs can be used for 'Calendar Art' - problem solved!!

Two Learning Options

As a Teacher Only Day 


A wonderful way for your staff  to learn about ways to encourage creative + critical thinking through art as well as 

have fun as a group and 

build relationships with each other in a beautiful environment.

10am - 2.30pm.


In the Holidays 


Get a group together from your school to attend, come alone and report back to your staff or you may be an educator not currently working in schools.


A wonderful way to connect with other teachers and learn through doing, in the beautiful environment of Muriwai Beach.

10am - 2.30pm.

  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

Mandy Jakich CEO



  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram