A Government report reveals that Kenyans want their children to be taught good manners in nursery school.
The Needs Assessment Report (2016) shows what nursery school children should be taught and how they should be skilled during their early years of learning under the proposed new curriculum.
Specific findings of the survey conducted by the Kenya Institute Curriculum Development (KICD) on the proposed new curriculum reveal that Kenyans want all nursery school children to be taught languages (including mother tongue), mathematics, life skills, and creative arts right from their early grade learning.
"Throwing away litter, washing hands, using courteous language, basic communication skills such as reading, and writing, and counting, good manners, knowing the environment, socialisation, and religious values should be emphasised," reads the report.
Public speaking, writing, physical education, drawing, and simple mathematical concepts are also listed among the proposals to be included in the early grade-learning curriculum.
The report says Kenyans proposed that nursery education take a maximum of two years and shall be attended by children of between four and five years.
Other areas suggested for emphasis are national values, life skills, personal safety (security), knowledge and practice, values associated with the common good, communal responsibility, and respect for other people's property.
Technology, emotional awareness, empathy, self-regulation, and conflict resolution; respect for the rule of law, appreciation for democracy; and creative arts and expression have also been proposed to be included in early learning.
Some 2,431 participants took part in the KICD study. They included primary school pupils, secondary and college students, parents, teachers, heads of schools, workers in the informal sector and industry, education field officers, and various stakeholders.
The survey identifies communication skills, numeracy, creativity and manipulation and social and life skills as some of the fundamental abilities that need to be cultivated among children.
Environmental awareness, respect for and sanctity of life, nutrition and health, religion and ethics, values related to hard work, and truthfulness and integrity are also listed as skills that all nursery children ought to be taught.
The report says Kenyans want nursery school children to be taught using riddles, songs, demonstrations, and thematic approaches, in that order.
"Other respondents proposed diversified ways of learning such as peer learning, modelling, use of pictures, role play, and demonstrations," says the document.