I’ve been reading about Safari Kid, an international kindergarten and nursery service that started in Silicon Valley for the children of technology whizzes. It spread across America and Asia and is now this summer due to open in London. Clerkenwell of course. North London. Why would it open south of the river? Children south of the Thames (or indeed north of the capital) aren’t Safari Kid material. These children have to be within walking distance of the City, where they will one day grow up to reign.
Safari Kid is the logical extension of the Tiger Mum phenomenon; kids as young as one will be having lessons in public speaking as well as Mandarin Chinese, French and Spanish, all aimed at nurturing the next generation of (over)achiever. Safari Kid doesnt just offer a daycare, it has ‘programmes’ which are customised for the learning curve of each child and develop critical cognitive, social, emotional, physical, creative and reasoning skills in children below the age of seven years. Ignoring the hyperbole and management-speak, isn’t this what every decent childcare service provides? Be it through play, taught lessons or self-learning, care for children under 7 can’t help but involve moulding young minds.
Safari Kid website notes that their kids are generally ‘one or two grade levels ahead of their peers when they enter primary school, and stand out as leaders and problem solvers in any group’, which is great news for the Tiger Mums amongst us. Being developmentally advanced at the earliest possible stage must be the ideal for the pushy parents of these kids. Obviously their website doesn’t note the cost of this specialised service or the Safari Kid pre-school education to years of guaranteed bullying ratio, but I’ve got to assume both are high.