When Odri came to our Kids Time Dhanmondi Center, she was a typical shy kid. A 6-year old girl who has a nag of drawing. Her parents admitted him to a local Art Class Center. After a couple of months, she dropped out. Her parents said to us, she didn’t like it. They were surprised by this. Because Odri loves drawing. That’s why they admitted her there.
Later while working with her, we realized that Ordi loves to draw of her own. She doesn’t like being told what to draw. She didn’t like her Art Class because it felt like just another school to her where everything needs to follow the rule.
Raiyan’s parents were really worried about his lack of concentration. They feared that he might have an attention disorder. When we discussed with his parents, we found out that it was because of excessive use of the smartphone, he has been showing this behavior.
We found Raiyan very creative, always trying to make something new. Initially, it was difficult for him to concentrate for more than 5-10 minutes. But within a couple of months, he improved a lot and started to make all the amazing crafts with us.
7-year old Rina has an amazing imaginative mind. She can make a story with anything instantly. If you ask her to tell a story with an Ant, she will go: ‘One day the Ant king decides to go on a vacation…..’
She joined our Storymaking course. In this course, children make their own story, illustrate them and finally prepare their own storybooks. We put them on our website, and anyone can download them for their own children.
Like Odri, Raiyan and Rina, there are over 500 children now regularly attending Kids Time in 7 centers across Dhaka. It’s the largest Bangladeshi after-school brand. Light of Hope Ltd, the education company behind Kids Time started such an initiative is to help children to unleash and then nurture their inner creativity. Kids Time focuses on improving creativity, problem-solving skills, and emotional intelligence among children between 4-10 years old.
Through the world-class curriculum and engaging activity, Kids Time already became a place for children’s inspiration, imagination and creativity.
Picasso once said children are born creative. It’s a difficult task to remain creative as we grow up.
The world is moving fast and our children are going to find it difficult to adapt when they grow up. World Bank predicts that 70-70% of primary level children will end up in a job that doesn’t exist today. The top skills to get a job in the future will be creativity, problem-solving, critical thinking and emotional intelligence.
Unfortunately, in schools, we don’t teach these skills to our children. Class tests, exams, homework, coaching center, tuition, and smartphone became the daily routine of our children. We are all after good grades for our children, without even thinking whether that’s going to secure our child’s future.
Kids Time is working to develop these skills for children. So that, by the time they go to secondary or tertiary level education, they are ready with the right future skills.
Every year, Kids Time graduates complete various level of graduation through an amazing graduation program. This year, 80+ students completed their graduation from 4 centers. Next year, it will be few hundreds.
Finland is considered to have the best education system in the world. For decades, policymakers and educators have been visiting Finland to understand the ‘secret’ behind their success. Despite being the best system in the world, recently Finland bring a major reform in their education system. They’ve decided to take out subject-based learning from the curriculum. Which means no more math, language or science class in schools. And they are replacing them with topics or themes. A major reform for the ‘Mecca of Education’ to ensure that children develop necessary 21st-century skills like creativity, problem-solving, collaboration and critical thinking.
We wanted to learn what the parents are thinking in Bangladesh. In our recent survey among parents in Dhaka, 60% parents said they prioritize skills like creativity and problem-solving over academic results. Yet there are very few options for parents in Dhaka. With 7 centers in Dhaka, Kids Time will be able to accommodate only about 500-600 children. There are about 2 million children in Dhaka alone between 4-10 years.
We are planning to bring the Kids Time curriculum, activity and programs to interested schools in Dhaka and in other districts. School principals, management and/or teachers can reach out to us to incorporate the activities into their school program. Parents are already in favor of having these type of programs in schools that help their children to become more creative and problem-solver.
Contact with our Program Head, Tahamina Rahman at 01771588404.
(Original names of the children are not used in the article to protect their identity)