Our nursery school was the the start of our Happy House School. Thanks to a very generous anonymous donation it opened in January 2011.
Sue wanted introduce something new and innovative by creating
a school for our Happy House kids, plus day pupils from the local community, where children could learn through play in colourful and lively surroundings.
It is different from so many schools in Kenya where children are taught by rote. Children, even the smallest, are expected to still and repeat what the teacher says or writes on the board.
Our nursery is quite different. The children are busy and encouraged to express themselves through interaction, practical activities and play.
Children who need more attention are given extra projects to keep them busy and interested.
The walls are covered with the work the children have done - drawings, paintings and collages.
Each class has diffrent book to read each week then activities are planned around the story. For instance, One class was reading Hannah's Surprise, where Hannah takes a basket of fruit, which she carries on her head to a friend's house. As she walked different fruits were taken by different animals. The children were given paper plates to cut out and coloured the fruits, they all then proudly walked with it on their head. We bought the different fruits so they could look, feel, smell and taste each one! They drew the animals and learnt the colours and played counting games. So many activities from just one story book. Many of you who are teachers in other countries will not see this as anything out of the ordinary, but for Kenya it puts us streets ahead of other schools and their methods of teaching.
Children from the age of 3 are having computer lessons and learning fast.
We encourage the children to drink water throughout the day to ensure they are hydrated in the intense heat. We have lots of movement - moving to different areas for different lessons, to make the day varied and interesting, plus PE and movement to music.
Mama Sue has said so many times in her 15 years working in Watamu
'Education is the road out of poverty for children.'
Our innovative approach to education is setting each one of our children on a the path to a bright future.
What we started with our nursery we have continued with kindergarten and primary schools and will take on into our secondary school opening soon.
- If you have educational DVD's or computer software such as Learning Ladders that your children or school no longer need please send them to us to help our children. Our address is:- Sue Hayward's Happy House P.O. Box 796, Watamu. Kenya. East Africa.