Pre-schoolers get an early start in life education at My First Skool’s annual Kidz-In-Charge event.
| PHOTO COURTESY OF MY FIRST SKOOL
On June 26, NTUC’s My First Skool held its sixth annual Kidz-In-Charge event with Singapore Sports Council, as venue sponsor. Held concurrently at Bedok, Woodlands, Serangoon and Clementi stadiums, the event saw a total turn-out of 7,000 children and parents.
While previous themes included Nature Conservation in 2009 and Traditional Games in 2008, this year’s KIC event, titled “Sports League,” aims to promote greater understanding among parents on how sports can be an effective avenue to impart positive values such as self-confidence, resilience and perseverance to young children. It also seeks to advocate the educational value of sports in early childhood education, especially in terms of character building and personality development.
Underpinning these objectives, however, is the most essential building block of a child’s growing-up years—direct parental involvement. According to Chan Tee Seng, CEO of My First Skool, the overarching aim of the event was to foster greater parent-child partnership by encouraging parents to be more involved in the learning and developmental process of their children in their early years. He hopes that KIC would continue to evolve in future by incorporating more interesting and enjoyable elements to enliven the overall learning experience of the pre-schoolers.
Conceptualized by My First Skool’s team of in-house curriculum experts, the program at each venue comprised 10 sports activities, from gunny-sack races and baton relays to soccer matches. Participating children ranged from 18-month toddlers to 6-year-olds. Said Preman Komala Devi, the principal curriculum specialist of My First Skool, “It took about two to three months to properly organize and align the sequence of each pre-engagement activity before the actual event. The games are carefully crafted and designed by the in-house committee to ensure that the coordination and execution of each activity complies with the highest standard of safety regulations.” She also highlighted the holistic aspect of the event, saying, “Education is not just confined to academic knowledge but it also involves exposing children to the outside world and letting them learn from a different approach.”
Leading up to the event, the children engaged in various pre-event and center activities, which included sessions with various sports associations and sports personalities such as the national players from the Hockey Federation, S-League goalkeeper Zakariah Nerani and Xu Ruoyan, who won a silver medal during the 2007 South East Asian Games. The children also attended a day sports camp and visited the Youth Olympic Games Learning Centre in order to get an understanding of what the Olympic spirit entails.
Mervin Sim, 38, a senior business executive who participated in the event with his 5-year-old daughter, Jolyn Sim, commented, “The logistics were well-organized and the level of difficulty for each game well-suited for pre-schoolers.” Another parent, Ismati Binte Ahmad, 37, an administrative assistant and first-time participant, affirmed that the activities helped parents gain better insight into the different teaching approaches of My First Skool.
My First Skool is the pioneer pre-school arm of the NTUC First Campus Group. It offers more than 5,500 preschool places through its chain of over 50 centers island-wide, providing childcare, infant care, student care and flexi-care programs.