Since the beginning of the Coronavirus, the landscape of the World we knew until now has dramatically shifted to a virtual world, in which we need to constantly redefine new ways of staying connected. While in some countries nurseries and schools remain partially open, or are fully closed, families have been asked to stay home for their own safety, which is not without any challenges. While parents work even harder than before to try to sustain their work, they now need to become a teacher to their children and also preserve mental health for everyone.
Although this situation has, without any doubt, serious consequences for humans and businesses, it has also been an acceleration factor for Babilou Family, which puts innovation, entrepreneurship, agility, with our families and human connection at the centre. In many countries where Babilou is represented, all teams have been closely monitoring the local situation and proactively adapting to the changes to ensure a smooth and effective transition for all children, families and partners. Thus, they have launched the roll out of their new breakthrough services, the #1 being a global E-learning experience.
In Singapore, the Government announced a Circuit Breaker period in April and, since then, our centres have moved to a Home-Based Learning model, re-defining our ways of staying connected and learning.
Prior to the circuit breaker period, our team had already started developing various comprehensive and quality resources for our children to ensure continuity in every child’s learning and development. Take-home kits were created and delivered to the doorstep of each child who was on leave of absence and/or a Stay Home Notice.
Our curriculum team also developed a guide that encompasses a child-friendly explanation of viruses and the importance of personal hygiene, coupled with different activities to engage our children. These guides were also featured in Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) Beanstalk Facebook page.
Our interactive Home-Based learning modes comprise of pre-recorded videos from the enrichment and curriculum team, daily online class conferencing, alongside weekly Home Learning activities to keep the children constantly engaged and active. The extensive list of activities consists of language and arts, exploration and reflection, creative play, cook and bake recipes and enrichment videos that compliment well with the daily interactive online class sessions. Despite not being physically with our children, we ensure consistency for the children who are meeting their teachers and friends daily to promote emotional stability and enhancing their well-being.
Pooja, Head of Curriculum said: “The situation has created an impact on everyone but we have embraced the changes confidently as we embarked on this new mode of learning with all our stakeholders: teachers, parents and children. Our dedicated team of teachers is passionate in nurturing all children. Despite being a steep learning curve for them, they have shown resilience, displayed creativity in conducting the online classes and continue to provide strong guidance in assisting the children as well. The distance will never keep us apart and together as a big, nurturing family, we can overcome this hurdle. “
In Colombia, our Origami centres started their E-learning programmme “Origami closer to you” by the end of March.
“Origami closer to you” is a flexible programme designed to be used by babies, toddlers and their parents. It uses different strategies in which teachers, directors and the interdisciplinary team (psychologist, speech therapist, occupational therapist) are available all day long in different spaces. Every week, parents receive activity plans according to their child’s age which allows them to organise their home and work schedules. Every day the children can participate in online morning greetings and end of the day meetings with their teacher. They can also choose to take part in some or all of the following activities: online semiprivate classes, online group classes, classes with specialised teachers, and afternoon workshops. On a daily basis parents and children can ask for online support from teachers or the therapeutic team whilst every week we send articles and other support materials to our families. In addition, parent-teacher meetings take place every two weeks and in June a qualitative report will be send to each child.
One of the families says: “It’s a wonderful interdisciplinary programme that combines different methods that enhance the development of specific skills. We like the way in which our child interacts with different teachers and the variety of classes which he can attend. The afternoon workshops are just wonderful. The weekly plan is well structured, and its design allows a clear understanding of the purpose of each activity. We also like the Pencil App which allows nice and easy communication with the teachers. We have seen great progress in our son!”
In June, the programme will be enhanced with new online workshops (gardening, yoga, ballet and cooking). In addition to this, the “Origami at home” programme will be launched. With this programme we will complement “Origami closer to you” by sending members of our staff to family’s homes to assist and work with their child two mornings per week.
In the Middle East, since beginning of April, Blossom and Seashells Nurseries are bringing their nursery experience to Family’s homes, thanks to their new Brand Inspire Me at Home.
High quality content and true, authentic human connections, are at the heart of our premium E-learning service provided by our highly qualified Early Years experts. Through this unique programme, tailor-made for toddlers from 24 months to 4 years plus, families have access to extensive planning with daily videos, stimulating and suitable activities and tutorials. Every day, children can experience 5 to 7 activities based on key areas of learning inspired by our modern EYFS curriculum, along with music, physical activities, art and craft activities and French and Arabic language lessons. In addition to this rich content each teacher runs live classrooms, a unique time for children to sing, express themselves, engage and connect together.
Sari, Head of Education outlines “Inspire Me at Home provides an early year’s programme that has an educational content planned in great detail to support a child's mental, social and educational stability. Every activity is put in place not only to support a specific area of child development, but to allow the child to thrive in their overall development and learning. Since Inspire me at Home learning is led by our professional educators, every activity supports previous learning and allows the child to build age appropriate skills. The E-learning is not an extension of our modern EYFS curriculum: it is its own, solid educational model.”
Our promise will always remain the same: we are here to support all our families and their children WHEREVER they are at ANYTIME. With this current situation our E-learning programme offers structure to the day of each child, which helps them to feel secured whilst also ensuring emotional stability as they can interact with their virtual teacher and friends. This is even more important when considering many of our families are away from their home countries and they need human interactions. Thus, we understand the challenges that our families are facing and we will always continue to listen carefully to their needs and the signals of the World we are living in. To share with you some exciting news, soon we will be launching our new Body & Mind Enrichment programme, offering mindful activities to the children. And that is not it, we will also kick off another key programme that is close to our heart, our Nanny programme, using our expertise of Early Years education to upscale nanny’s skills, knowledge and self-confidence.
In India, Amelio Early Education has launched "Amelio Reach", their latest initiative to support families at home, and engage with children in their early years through virtual child-engagement sessions.
Amelio's curriculum team has specially developed learning opportunities using a blending learning approach, always keeping in mind that a crucial part of their learning happens through activities. Inspired by Amelio's award-winning World of Discovery Curriculum and the Early Years Foundation Stage framework, Amelio Reach offers a comprehensive activity-based daily routine that follows a weekly theme. Learning is brought to life in the form of live sessions, videos, written content, printable activity sheets and guided home learning activities. Created for children aged 6 months and above, the programme is specially developed for each age group, to ensure that every child can benefit from the program.
Sathish, Amelio’s Associate Vice President of Operations says, " We know that learning at home is not easy for children and parents. And when it comes to young children and their short attention spans, E-learning can sometimes be a challenge. Thus, we have ensured that the activities and the frequency of engagement are age-appropriate and highly sensitive to the home environment. Our role as a company is to assist, and if needed mentor/coach parents or their caregivers, to develop a new work-life routine at home that does not neglect the developmental and psychological needs of children, especially the younger ones. After all, learning has no limitations!"