Find out more how every Kairos child thrives by completing a “Find Out More” form at the bottom (or just give us a call at 011 646 6221).

At Kairos we view our school camps as potential journeys that nurture the development of selfhood in our children. We endeavour to design our camps in line with each stage of a child’s emotional development. A child experiences a gradual process of individuation, a journey which Cecil Day-Lewis beautifully describes in his poem, “Walking Away”:

I watched you play / your first game of football, then, like a satellite / wrenched
from its orbit, go drifting away… / …that hesitant figure, eddying away / like a
winged seed loosened from its parent stem… / … the small, the scorching /
ordeals which fire one’s irresolute clay… / … God alone could perfectly show /
how selfhood begins with walking away / and love is proved in letting go.

When a baby is born, there is a natural primal connection with the mother. In ideal circumstances, this precious attachment between baby and mother is deep and profound, the baby now thriving outside the mother’s body but frequently in the arms and lap of its mother. Soon after, other prominent family figures (like the father) emerge as significant people in the child’s life. Over time, as the infant grows into a toddler, games like peek-a-boo and later hide and seek help the youngster develop trust that the absence of those who love the child is only temporary.

This journey of emerging selfhood continues with taking steps of increasing autonomy towards adulthood. At Kairos, our school camps are aligned with this archetypal journey. Our school camps are purposefully designed to recognise the children’s growing need for autonomy. Grades R & 1 camp experience involves an overnight campout on the school grounds with parents while our Grade 2-3 Kairos -stay is without parents. The Grade 4-7 Kairos camp is an awesome adventure of two nights away from home. Depending on the cohort of children in the particular year, Grade 4s sometimes return after one night away.

By including meaningful moments of connection during the camps, such as songs around the campfire and a Kairos-style “Check-in” for the older ones, we honour these milestones. The children appreciate the recognition that they are growing up. Ideally, before the child enters adulthood the adolescent will enjoy a healthy initiatory experience designed intelligently by adults in the community (vastly different to an adolescent-led series of escapades involving hazardous behaviour). We have been humbled as we witnessed how, over the years, some pupils have been supported to take major steps of courage or experienced memorable profound moments of healing or conflict resolution.

Traditional initiations have been an integral part of many cultures around the world
– although, tragically, many have lost the authenticity needed to achieve the educational objective of taking a conscious step towards adulthood. In communities where adolescents’ emotional and social education is effective, adolescents enter adulthood as balanced, self-assured individuals. These are citizens with the capacity to be purposeful, flexible, empathic and motivated to take care of their families and their community.

Malidoma Somé, an authority in the concept of adolescent initiations, emphasised
the responsibility a community has for a growing child. He wrote that each individual child:

“must be assisted in giving birth to the genius that he is born with. Failure to
do so kills that genius along with the person carrying it. The community responsible for the death of his inner genius is like an assassin. The community that is able to receive the person’s genius gives birth to the adult who is able to contribute his or her healing gifts to that community.”

At Kairos, we seek to be the kind of community that guides its children through increasingly challenging “foretastes” of an initiation into adulthood. Good education has a therapeutic function: the journey of growing up can be a difficult, and education can – and should – support those travelling it.

“This morning I once again felt validated in the choice we made for my daughter’s school.”

— Kairos Parent

“Fun, play, creativity and constant learning finds a mix with real empathy.”

— Kairos Parent

“Kairos School is unique in what it offers.”

— Kairos Parent

“You and your staff can be extremely proud of producing a young man of D’s calibre…”

— Paul Edey, St Johns principal

“Strong, inquiring, mind-minded individuals with heart = Kairosians! “

— Kairos parent

“The relative ease with which our two older boys have coped with the obstacles the COVID-19 pandemic brought for all of us, is to a very large extent due to the foundation they received at Kairos…”

— Kairos parent

“…highly skilled teachers…”

— Kairos Parent

“My child is so happy… I feel like I have my little girl back!”

— Kairos Parent

“Certainly the most innovative and nurturing primary school in Joburg!”

— Kairos Parent

“I’ve not seen the personal care received here anywhere else.”

— Kairos Parent