Who We Are


Thinkers.inq is an early years school leading transformational play for three to five year old children. We incorporate play-based learning with project-based problem solving. It’s a learning model developed by our Directors and designed to transform the lives of children and positively impact families.



Rod Soper, Director of Education, Thinkers.inq

Rod Soper, Creative Director of Education, ThinkersInq

Rod Soper, Director of Education, Thinkers.inq

Rod has more than twenty years in the fields of education and leadership design.

He has held a range of senior positions, including Head of Primary Years, Assistant Principal (p-12), Director of Early Years Learning in the preschool space, senior researcher and leadership designer.

Rod’s expertise in the fields of education and leadership includes research into ontological and interpersonal development, critical thinking, pedagogy and transformational learning environments, educational change and leadership. He has led numerous research projects and published papers and book chapters within the field of education, teaching practice, learning design, leadership and organisational change.

Rod is passionate about learning  in all its forms and aims to provide optimum opportunities for all learners to realise their full potential. Through his work, he aims to build a network of transformational educators and leaders by facilitating change through personal growth, creative, critical and reflective thinking and innovative practice.

The establishment of Thinkers.inq is one way Rod is demonstrating his commitment and vision to foster a community of creative and inquiring minds, whether that be teachers, families and children, that can go forward into the world with confidence, open-mindedness and passionate curiosity.

Melissa Browne, Director of Business, Thinkers.inq

Mel Browne

Melissa Browne, Director of Business, Thinkers.inq

Melissa is Director of Business for Thinkers.inq and CEO of Accounting and Taxation Advantage (A+TA), an award-winning accounting and advisory firm with offices at Glenbrook and North Sydney. She is a business leader with expertise in business management and strategy.

Melissa is author of the innovative, illustrated business book, More Money for Shoes, is a regular columnist for the Money Section in the Sydney Morning Herald and has been featured in Cosmopolitan magazine, Latte magazine, Renegade Collective as well as being named one of Australia’s 100 inspiring women in Madison Magazine in 2013. She is making her mark as a disrupter and rebel in an industry known for their conservatism with her passion to help business owners appreciate how understanding the numbers will help them grow successful and profitable businesses.

Tony Larven, Director of Operations, Thinkers.inq


Tony Larven, Director of Operations, Thinkers.inq

Tony is the Director of Operations. He is a sports and musculoskeletal physiotherapist and has run his own very successful practice for nearly 20 years. As such he has vast experience in working with a broad spectrum of the community. Tony has been the head physiotherapist to an NRL teams for 17 years, to the Australian Olympic Canoe Slalom Team and a physiotherapist for Cricket NSW, NSW Institute of Sport and Australian Institute of Sport.

Tony has been clinical lecturer at the University of Sydney on the Masters in Sports and Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy programs. Tony’s physiotherapy practice consults for Healthscope Private Hospitals and Woolworths in physiotherapy and best practice.

Like many health professionals Tony believes it is vital that children have positive experiences during physical activity in their formative years. Tony will be leading health and gross motor development programs for families and staff.

Apply now or contact us to further discuss how we can help.


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'We absolutely love your centre and have nothing but praise for you all. Starting a new place brings with it some fears particularly with separation anxiety, but each day we have had no problems with drop-offs. We thought our daughter would be upset over separation again, but she and her brother are happy to go with no tears at all. That is amazing and shows the comfort and kindness you all show them.

The "word on the street" is what an amazing preschool you have, and I promise that we are adding to that with praise for all that you do.

Lisa    June 20, 2018  

Since sending our 3-year-old son to Thinkers.inq it has been wonderful to see his progress, they create a really positive environment for the kids! The learning strategies have supported his development and it is a pleasure to see his confidence and enthusiasm grow week on week. He is always excited to show and share with us the day’s activities. A great team that have created delightful surroundings accompanied by an excellent healthy food menu. We feel fortunate to be part of the Thinkers.inq family.

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Julie and Duncan    April 7, 2015  

I remember the sunny evening we visited Thinkers.inq. A space of possibility: colourful, creative and inspired. We absorbed a crafts corner with easels and brushes, a ‘corner store’, wooden furniture, cute picnic tables ready for pint-sized picnickers. Further inspection revealed the outdoor amphitheater, the organic gardens, fruit trees, handmade puzzles and high grade, integrated technology. No heavy reliance on plastic toys and ‘babysitting’ here!

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Tanya    April 2, 2015  

..I then heard about Thinkers.inq and from the first moment there I knew I had found what I was looking for our son. The family environment and warmth, the resources available, the inquiry based programming, the space and use of it and to just top it off the amazing healthy no ‘nasties’ food focus...

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Samantha    April 1, 2015