Two hundred Whanganui principals, teachers and teacher aides attended the first of two workshop sessions with lecturer Nathan Mikaere-Wallis on Tuesday.

Mr Mikaere-Wallis has been a lecturer at the Christchurch College of Education, lecturing in human development, brain development, language and communication and risk and resilience.

His presentations will explore how the brain works and how neuro-science can better inform teacher's day to day interactions with children and young people.

Mr Mikaere-Wallis has a background of working with children in counselling settings relating to domestic violence, sexual abuse and childhood trauma.


Mr Mikaere-Wallis said many of the new findings to be discussed in his workshops contradict many of the practises that parents, teachers and other helping professionals have utilised in the belief that they are helping children.

Principal of Mosston School Michelle Watson said Nathan is an amazing speaker who has a great insight into how children's brains develop and the effect this has on them later in life.

"Nathan also discusses the importance of a child's first 1000 days and the interactions they have during this time and he has also researched the impact families, environments and relationships have on children and how we as educators can use this knowldge to improve outcomes for children," Watson said.

Watson said the workshop is an inspiring way to start the year before teachers will meet the children in their 2018 classes.

The next Whanganui workshop will take place in the July holidays.