A castle for Mis Reyecitos

Education is one of the most influential factors in the later development of infants. Achieving a healthy and reliable space for the growth of both parents and children  has become a recurring challenge in Cuba’s non-state run daycare centers.

Founded in 2014, “Mis reyecitos” is located in Havana’s Vedado, on 3rd Street between E and F streets, in the Plaza de la Revolución municipality. Yaneidis Córdova Escobar, its General Director, founded this space dedicated to children from one year of age, out of the need to have a safe place for her three-year-old son.

“My parents are teachers, and so are my sister and I, so opening a kindergarten was like a dream come true for us. At home, my sister and I didn’t play house, we played school, and even though she was older, I was always the teacher,” she says.

The daycare center receives children from 8:00 in the morning to 5:00 in the afternoon. The essential requirements are based on the age of the infants; they must be over one year old and be able to walk.

The program used with the children is the same as that of conventional children’s daycare centers, in addition to using the Montessori method and teaching aids. This is characterized by providing an orderly, aesthetic and simple environment where each element has its raison d’être in the development of the children’s abilities. Likewise, they should be free to develop and learn at their own pace.

“We also have extra classes for children over 3 years old – English, chess, acting and cooking workshops eventually,” Yaneidis explains.

The nursery is a very safe place because together with public health authorities they have created a space where there is no danger for the children.

“Working with children gives you years of life, at least I see it and feel it that way. It cannot be seen as a business, because you put in your emotions and become part of that little world. It takes a lot of sacrifice, delicacy and it is a commitment to the people who have put in your hands the safety and education of their children. It is very gratifying to see them grow in every way, the rest is the least of it.”

For Yaneidis, deciding the keys to success is very simple; she has no doubt that motivation, communication, innovation, passion and love, although not the only means to ensure definitive success, are all part of the path.

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