Getting the ideal Kindergarten for your 3 year old

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(image courtesy of          SmithsonianMag.com)

Our first born turned 3 years in December and on Tuesday 7th, we took her to Kindergarten. She looked so grown up in her school uniform. I was all emotional wondering whether to be happy or sad to see her go.

This whole complication of the different levels; Baby class, Nursery, pre-unit  has been pretty confusing to me as I can’t get why a kid has to take 3 years in Nursery.

When I was joining Nursery, it was very simple, 1 or 2 years in Nursery then off to class 1. There was nothing like graduating from nursery or the fun fare of hiring a gown for a 6 year old complete with a leavers bash!. Where did all this come from (I digress)

I had been warned that nowadays, getting a good school for your child is like bidding for your country to host the World Cup, you do it immediately you do that urine test after your periods have been late for 2 months and discover that you are pregnant! Even before you go for your first pre-natal clinic, go to the Kindergarten of your choice and fill the waiting form then wait for the interview.

I therefore started looking for a school for Naomi as soon as the doctor said, its a girl! in August last year having taken a one week off for the exercise. I had a couple of names in mind having set up the following rules

a. School should not be more than a  30 minute drive away
b. The school has to have a playground (Its criminal to make 3 year olds stay in class cramming with no actual break and a place they can play
c. Fees should not be more than our rent (otherwise we should move into the school)
d. Learning method (Having done my research, I preferred a school that used the Montessori method where kids use flash cards & other more effective methods as opposed to just singing abcd)
e. Environment  – if the school structure looks like every class is usually an afterthought, like those landlords who build the ground floor of a rental house and wait for the tenants to help raise the other floors! Again, if the school is not clean, wash rooms stink,  etc your child will be the hospital’s patient of the month. If the schools idea of a swimming pool is an inflatable one which is rarely cleaned again, health hazard.

With  these few guidelines I set out to various schools starting with Waridi in Westlands. I loved the school but when I got the fees structure, lets just say over 100K in a year for a kid to learn Aa Ba Ca Da felt like extortion. I decided to stick to my lane. 

I finally got a school after having visited over 9 of them and I fell in love with it.

What I have come to learn that a lot of money might not necessarily get you the best school for your child. Its also important to set your goal on the ideal type of school for your child.

Lastly, do not subject your child to a 6 a.m routine in the name of preparing to go to Nursery with a 2 hour bus ride every morning and evening! that child will grow to detest school which should be fun and a place to learn new exciting things.

Edit: Due to the numerous requests to disclose the school I settled for, my choice was due to its proximity as I live along Waiyaki way. I would recommend either Kids Zone or HillBrook Kindergarten. If you use the guidelines I shared, finding a good school that is within reach of where you live should not be hard but yes, it does take a bit of searching.

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52 comments

  1. Anne Reply

    Hi, I am looking for a school for my son, please share what school you settled on for your child.

    • admin Reply

      I settled on a school along Waiyaki way. Its not so much about the school’s name. rather, its if the school meets the expectations you have set as well as the guidelines you have set on the areas I mentioned. Sometimes, it does even necessitate one moving residencies if it means that the child can wake up at 7.30am and be in class by 9am

  2. Anne Reply

    i was asking about the name of the school because i am doing “shopping” now and i have encountered more or less the same challenges you have …………especially the school fees part plus waiyaki way with where would also be convenient

      • Chris Reply

        could you email me as well please. exact same boat and I live in Loresho so Waiyaki way is perfect

  3. Gift mulinge Reply

    hie please email me names of school for my 3 year old along waiyaki way that are in an affordable range .i live in kinoo.

  4. Angela Reply

    Hello, could you please email me the school you settled on? Actually have been considering Waridi, which led me to this site. thanks!.

  5. Linda Reply

    Hello, am also looking for a school around that area,would appreciate the nice school you settled for.Thanks

  6. Betty Reply

    Thank you for this site, after a frustrating such, I just got this, I am on the waiting list for some of those mentioned sch but the fee was so crazy… Could you kindly include me in your mailing list.
    I stay along waiyaki way

    • admin Reply

      Hi Betty,

      I wish you all the best. Getting an ideal school for your Child is a tedious exercise. I hope your child gets in. I have added you to our mailing list. You should get an email prompting you to confirm your subscription.

      Admin

  7. Peninah Thande Reply

    Hi,

    I am looking for a different school for my soon to be 4 yr old who was in baby class last year.Could anyone kindly recommend a nice school along Waiyaki Way.

    Thanks.

    Penny.,

  8. Manda Rekrut Reply

    Hi Afro mum, I found your site when reading about dreadlocks. Stumbled on this story cos I have a 2.5 year old I want to start school when she turns 3. So please advise about your daughters school?

    • admin Reply

      Hi Manda,

      Thank you so much for visiting us. Kindly check your emails for a response from us.

  9. Ludfine Reply

    Thank you for this site, after a frustrating such, I just got this, I am on the waiting list for some of those mentioned sch but the fee was so crazy… Could you kindly include me in your mailing list.
    I stay along waiyaki way

    • admin Reply

      Hi Ludfine,

      Finding a good school that fits within your budget, is in a good location and has all the adequate amenities is a nightmare. We are sending you email shortly on the school we settled on. There is a ‘Subscribe via Email’ feature on the left hand side of our homepage, Let us know if you run into any problem when subscribing.

      • admin Reply

        hi Ludfine,

        Our email to you has been blocked. kindly email us on afromumke(at)gmail(dot)com using an alternate address.

  10. Ludfine Reply

    Hi, I am looking for a school for my son, please share what school you settled on for your child.

  11. Leah Reply

    Please share with me the name of the school. Otherwise, I loved the article

  12. Stella Sigana Reply

    Hi Njeri,

    A very good article. You are very good at your research. Could you please share the list of 9 schools that you visited and which did you settle for. I would really appreciate the information.

  13. Evalyn Soila Reply

    Please please email me too..i live near kianda school.i have 3yr old so desperate finding a good school…pliz

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  15. onlinecave Reply

    Please share the school name.Got a 2.5 year old daughter and its quite a task looking for a school especially along waiyaki way

  16. Sharrold Reply

    Hi,
    I am looking for a school along waiyaki way for my son he is turning 3 in September. Can you send me a few recommendations?

  17. Esther Reply

    I’m shopping for a school for my 3.5 year old. Please share with me too.

  18. Kitui Reply

    Hi, i find this style of marketing very unprofessional and offensive. Why not disclose the name of the school you settled for but disclose Waridi. Using the optimized name Waridi on google search to market your school was very unprofessional. I kindly advise that you either un-mount the post or edit. This is attracting legal implications. Thank you

    • Angela Reply

      Not sure I understand Kitui’s concern above, about the author “marketing” “her” school. Are you suggesting that the schools she recommends are owned by her? In my view she is just sharing her experiences with looking for a school for her daughter. You will see in the edits that she eventually shared her recommendations, but this came after numerous requests for the info.

      • admin Reply

        Thank you Angela,

        Kitui is a bitter web administrator who is resorting to empty threats due to an honest opinion given by a parent who decided to speak her mind on the school. As I mentioned, If I worked for an international firm and could afford 100K, I would actually have considered Waridi but I found the fees structure out of my league.
        As you have noted, I have since amended the post to indicate the school I recommend based on my guidelines. However, we all look for different things when looking for a school. Blogs exist for individuals to air their personal views.

    • admin Reply

      Hi Kitui,

      I am not sure why this post is offending you and even if it does, unless you have a defamation case then this is my honest opinion and experience. I visited Waridi among other schools gave my opinion of it as a prospective customer. Whatever school I settled on was based on the guidelines I gave. I have however taken your comments as positive feedback and provided details of the 2 ideal schools.

      I will however not allow you to threaten me with the law as I am very familiar with defamation lawsuits. I notice you are the administrator of the Waridi website, I suggest that you ensure better page ranking for your website so that prospective parents don’t find this blog before finding your school’s website. NW

  19. ppdisland Reply

    This is very insightful!! I looked at all the pointers you mentioned in the exact same order for the first 3! proximity is paramount for me. No traffic jam, no unwarranted commute time, and yes, my 3.5 yo son is up at 7am, gets to school 40 mins later, having had breakfast, prayed, and sometimes even sneaked in a dance. Love their teaching style too.

    Certainly looking forward to spending time on this blog.

    • admin Reply

      Hi Samoina,

      Thank you very much for visiting us. We are glad you were able to get a kindergarten that does not make you go out of your way and strain just to get your son to nursery school. Our daughter goes to class 1 in 2017 and we are already shopping for a school. All the best.

  20. Mombasa port Reply

    Just read your article. We also looking for a school for our 3 yr old.. I was thinking of home schooling him since i normally work form home.. aka jobless. Thanks for sharing this. Acts as a guild line for us.

  21. kare Reply

    I agree with Kitui, you do not have to name a school, she could have just state the amount she feels is on the high end without naming a particular school. Waridi is a wonderful school my daughters have schooled there and I have no regrets.

  22. kare Reply

    By the way I actually landed on this site because of the good name of Waridi School, change your article a little bit more without naming any school.

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  24. Julius/The Episodes Reply

    I like the idea of giving your child the best environment for learning. I would recommend a kindergarten that tries to know and nurture your child’s talents and passion. After kindergarten, focus on nurturing their passion or what they love. It will save you a lot of money, disappointments and stress.

    After 15 years of being in school, cramming a bunch of things that never help me, I realized how much time and money my parents had wasted. I had forgotten how to draw and talk to people. When I quit university, after sometime , everything came back to my mind. Remembering my ability to draw, design stuff and speak to people at events. Now I do what I love and I love what I do. I’m financially stable and happy.

    My point is, focus on your child’s talents and passion after kindergarten. Don’t let the education system ruin your kids, I speak from experience.

  25. Nil Reply

    Pls let me know the name of the school you ended up picking. I live near warier but need other options!

  26. maggie njoroge Reply

    hey am looking for a school along waiyaki way /westlands area any that you would recommend we will be three in december

  27. Grace Reply

    please tell us the name of the school you settled for, iam shopping for a school for my son

  28. teri Reply

    Hi,am in mombasa,still searching for a school for my almost 3yr old baby…any suggestions?…..Hii January

  29. mercy Reply

    Teri,how are you. I hope you got a school in Msa. Which side do you stay? If in Nyali, you can try Tiny tots or Light (check out their fee structure). Busy Bee in Tudor. Depending with how much you’ve budgeted for you will get one. But most of them are not so good

  30. Florence Reply

    Hi i live along waiyaki way i am searching for a school for my 3year any suggestation. kindly assist

  31. Lilly Reply

    Hi, my boy is 17 months, I have started looking for a school. I live in Kiambu, Ruaka area. Kindly give suggestions

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