All About Kids
Get Ahead With Kidstarter
Parent-friendly and highly engaging for kids, Kidstarter is paving the way for progressive preschool learning in the comfort of your own home
Let’s be honest, nobody thought this pandemic was going to last for as long as it has, but here we are. Along with an extensive list of how the new normal has become increasingly tougher for parents, nothing beats the dilemma that those with younger children are facing— introducing their child to formal education via online learning.
In an effort to find ways to support new homeschooling parents, I sat down with Janna Simpao and Liana Lim-Cruz, M.S. ED, of Kidstarter, for a chat to ask about Kidstarter’s Everyday Journal. A notebook designed for kids aged 3-7, Janna explains, “This tool is a very light intro to writing, having fun with letters, and drawing stories. They can practice anything that has to do with writing, and it’s a product we wanted to equip preschools with.”
Interesting enough, as a mom to a preschooler, I was hooked. Then, something even better came up, as we talked casually about preschool curriculums and the way Kidstarter came to be.
Launched just last year, with the knowledge and expertise of Donna Pangilinan-Simpao M.D. (dubbed the “homeschool superstar”, having homeschooled all four of her kids), and Teacher Liana (highly experienced Senior Teacher, now homeschooling her 3 year old daughter), they began with the Kidstarter Curious Curriculum (KCC). The first in the Philippines, it’s a preschool curriculum made with the Filipino child in mind.
The best start to every Filipino child
Endearingly pro-Filipino and wonderfully intuitive, they’re a company that aims to make a difference in the currently evolving and growing preschool home-education scene. Structured around “thinking outside of the box” and encouraging the kids to do the same, it’s refreshing for everyone involved. It’s hard not to get excited about learning when the material is designed to pique your interest, and this is exactly what Kidstarter has to offer.
They have beautifully incorporated the Filipino culture and lifestyle into their KCC program with the belief that it makes learning more natural and understandable. At the same time, it helps kids learn and love their roots as Filipinos, which has been a growing concern that many parents share.
Teacher Liana adds, “We’re the first preschool curriculum that’s really intensive, and our vision is to give the best start to every Filipino child. There are preschool curriculums abroad, but when we checked it out, they were either outdated, or the material was very western focused. What we tried to do with KCC is meet the modern parents where they’re at.”
Rising to meet the challenge
One of the biggest fears that parents are facing with homeschool or online learning is tapping into their own skills with enough confidence to be able to teach their preschooler. If you weren’t particularly good in school, you might be worried whether or not you’d even be capable of taking on your child. You’re not alone, because the majority of parents feel the same way. As homeschooling parents themselves, Dr. Donna and Teacher Liana designed the KCC program to face that problem head on— and it came in the form of two books.
“When we were doing research for homeschooling, a lot of the moms were saying, ‘I don’t know what to say to my kid’, ‘What do we say so that they can talk more or be engaged’— so, we put conversation starters so parents will know exactly what to say when they’re doing a particular activity.” Teacher Liana flipped to a page that revealed vibrant colors and eye-catching illustrations. “We also wanted to show visuals that are enticing, and ones that kids can actually relate to.”
The KCC Book Set was created with the parents in mind, just as much as the kids. It comes with a Teacher’s Guide to aid you in the activities that are found in the pages of The KCC Activity Book. The set serves as an empowerment tool so anyone can feel confident in doing homeschool on their own— with an experience designed to be as worry-free as possible.
What sets Kidstarter apart from all the rest?
Teacher Liana mentioned that children learn at a lightning pace up until about the age of seven. With this in mind, they concentrated on the importance of learning at a very young age and designed material to accommodate the minds of kids as young as two years old. Kidstarter takes pride in their play-based program full of exploration, with over 200 play-centric activities, and disciplines that cover all the basics.
“What is realistic in terms of homeschooling? Can you do this everyday? Can you do it once a week? Realistically, if it’s twice a week, then make the most of your two times a week. Then you can fill in a specific activity for the day. You can choose. It’s what we call a Plug & Play: You pick one activity and plug it for the day, and that’s it. You play. If your child doesn’t feel like doing this, then leaf through the book, see what materials you have at home, and do that instead. It’s just figuring out what your child wants to do at that time.”
As Teacher Liana explains about the flexibility of their program, her three year old daughter Nadia, proudly displays her Kidstarter Everyday Journal in front of the camera. Her name is beautifully written on the cover, impressive for someone so young. Another Kidstarter success story in the making, her mom beams with pride.
Spark the love for learning in your child!
Their passion for empowering parents and teaching children is palpable in their brand. With raving reviews and praises for testimonials, it’s clear to anyone who comes across their products that Kidstarter is truly paving the way for innovative learning.
“This is the philosophy of Kidstarter— We give a lot of focus on the child exploring and being able to use their critical thinking and their creative thinking, because that’s really where learning happens. It’s not about just spoon-feeding the child. We hope these products really empower parents, because we know it’s not always easy.” A final statement from Janna that wraps up our chat.
The need for guidance in parents and proper education in kids has become strikingly urgent in the past several months. How timely, it seems, that we’ve found something that was created to address these demands, that shows parents that it can be done, as it sparks curiosity and love for learning in their little ones.