Honoring individuals who exemplify HighScope’s values.
In celebration of HighScope’s 50th anniversary, we are recognizing individuals who have been essential to the growth and success of our curriculum and approach. We like to think of them as our “HighScope Heroes.”
Meet HighScope Hero
OYINDAMOLA “OYINDA” SONOLA — An International Trailblazer in Early Childhood Education
Chief Executive Officer
Soams Creative Education and Consultancy
It has been our privilege to celebrate the achievements of 22 HighScope Heroes as a part of our 50th Anniversary celebration. As our HighScope Hero profile series ends, we want to congratulate each of these amazing honorees, and close with a profile that shines the spotlight on a true international trailblazer in the field of Early Childhood Education.
Meet Nigeria’s Oyindamola “Oyinda” Sonola
Oyinda serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Soams Creative Education and Consultancy. The organization, based in Lagos, Nigeria, and founded by Oyinda in 2001, is a leading educational and management consultancy that specializes in training educators, creating schools, and developing and managing pre-K, primary, and secondary school programs. For more than thirty years, Oyinda has been a pioneer in the field of education and has helped to train more than 2,000 teachers and education specialists — with HighScope’s active learning approach at the core of her training.
Oyinda is adding the title of HighScope Hero to a long list of honors, including becoming the first Nigerian HighScope Certified Trainer, endorsed by both HighScope Great Britain and the HighScope Educational Research Foundation (USA) in 2006. She also holds a Master of Education in Guidance and Counseling degree from the University of Ibadan in Nigeria. She has spoken at conferences locally, nationally, and internationally, including events hosted by HighScope, UNICEF, and World Organization for Early Childhood Education (OMEP).
“Soams Creative Education and Consultancy is dedicated to improving and setting the quality standard of nursery, primary, and secondary education in Nigeria and our continent as a whole,” says Oyinda. “We use a proven successful method to train educators and provide children with tools to effectively achieve their full potential.”
Oyinda believes that HighScope supports her vision of developing creative, independent, lifelong learners, while making the learning process fun. “It breaks learning barriers,” she says.
Oyinda is an innovator who looks for new ways to utilize HighScope’s active learning approach. In 2017, she launched “Activity Based, Low Cost, No Cost Initiative,” which uses free and found materials to teach inside and outside of the classroom. This program focuses on transforming waste materials such as plastic bottles and bottle caps into play and learning resources. The project garnered OMEP World’s “2020 Honorable Mention in Education for Sustainability” award.
In 2021, Oyinda plans to further empower teachers by providing active learning strategies for the instruction of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) subjects — enabling students to become better problem solvers and inventive thinkers.
Funsho Chikezie, a seasoned Nigerian ECE consultant and trainer, nominated Oyinda to be a HighScope Hero, saying “She is the leading ambassador in Nigeria for the HighScope brand and consistently recommends the HighScope approach to schools who desire to improve teaching and learning in their classrooms.”
Since the onset of COVID-19, Oyinda and her team have offered online HighScope resources for parents, as well as virtual training for childcare practitioners.
“I am very thrilled and excited to receive this honor from HighScope,” says Oyinda. “I will continue to champion its principles in Nigeria and throughout Africa.”