- Written by Silvia Mwendia for KenyaKiz
A Nanyuki mother is teaching Kenyan parents how to make learning more fun for their children through an on line platform called Makuti Kids. Barely one month old, the platform aims to make education more interesting for children by incorporating learning into play.
“I would like to reinforce learning by giving parents activities they can try out with their children while they are playing,' said Sandra Obudo, founder of Makuti Kids.
With a background in Montessori teaching techniques, the child educator and mother has always been interested in kids' activities.
“Makuti Kids actually started as a play centre whereby children learned suing the Montessori methods,” said Sandra.
After running the play centre for one year, she was not able to keep it open but still wanted to share her knowledge of 'learning while playing' with other parents so she turned to the world wide web.
“Despite closing the play centre, I was still passionate about reaching out to other parents on educational children's activities,” said Sandra.
Improvisation forms a big part of Makuti Kids therefore Sandra aims to come up with activities parents and children can do using common household items.
“The Montessori method also comes with its own specially designed materials but parents may not always be able to access them so I like to give parents alternatives,” said Sandra.
For instance, Sandra explains how parents can use coomon items in the house to teach their children how to count.
“In order to ensure that children can not only count but also understand the value of numbers, Montessori has a learning material called Cards and Counters where children place the correct number of counters under the card value,” she said. “Instead of using the Cards and Counters, parents can improvise by using items such as bottle tops, candles, tea bags, shells. The idea is to arrange cards written 1 to 10 and get your child to put the correct number of items under each card,” Sandra added.
Despite still being in the early stages, Sandra would like to see Makuti Kids grow to become a point of reference for parents of pre-schoolers and home-schoolers. She would also like to incorporate a training program for nannies.
“Nannies are with children all the time and it would be nice if they could also learn these Montessori methods to incorporate in play when they are left with the kids,” said Sandra.
For more information on Makuti Kids, visit makutikids.wordpress.comor contact Sandra on 0701 035 543