Finding the right nursery for your child is never an easy task… I remember my biggest concern when taking the plunge initially was the anxiety that came with leaving H alone, in someone else’s care, for the first time. With so much choice available to us, having peace of mind is always a priority.
When Deputy CEO, Phillippe Sachs had trouble finding a school to provide the educational experience he wanted for his kids in Singapore, he was pointed in the direction of Safari Kid – a nursery based in Silicon Valley set out to encourage kids (from all paths) with their imagination and hunger for learning.
Soon after his discovery, Phillippe and his boss, Rudy left their careers in Banking and secured the rights to Safari Kid outside the USA and opened the first school in Hong Kong. Over the next few years they opened numerous schools in the UAE, India and most recently the UK which Phillippe now chairs.
UK sites are located in Clerkenwell, Chiswick, Golders Green, Wandsworth, Windsor and their latest branch in Camden opened its doors a few weeks back.
I recently went to visit it and left feeling so enlightened I am determined to visit the other branches too.
The nursery uses elements from both the Montessori and Reggio Emilia methods combined with Dr. Howard Gardner’s theory and their own research into early brain development.
Celebrating diversity and with the knowledge that each child develops at a different rate, the school ethos encourages learning through play with Art, Drama, Music and Steam activities integrated at the core.
Children are welcome to join from 3 months old up to 5 years on a non-assessment entry with numerous session choices (half day, full day, extended, full time or a choice of 1, 2, 3 and 4 days a week). To make things easier for working parents, the school is open from 7:30am to 6:30pm.
The classrooms are beautifully designed with great attention to detail and age appropriate decor. The older children occupy the top floor and the younger kids are divided into two rooms on the ground floor. Each classroom has large windows letting in plenty of natural light. There is ample space to move around and neutral coloured wooden furnishings stimulating a calming environment for kids. One of the things I loved most was the fact that the majority of the toys were wooden rather than plastic.
Pops of earthy colours are also used around the nursery.
Learning can continue outside, where there is a large walled (and secured) space for children to run around in as well as a smaller section for the babies so that they do not feel overwhelmed.
The garden is surrounded with planter boxes which are used to grow their own flowers and vegetables. The nursery celebrates sustainability and encourages children to do the same from a young age.
Safari Kid has such a warm nurturing atmosphere and just from one visit, I could see how tirelessly the founders and staff work in order to give the children the very best start to their educational life.
I would strongly recommend a viewing.