Connected Curriculum - Chinese Cultural Month
Awarded MOE-AECES OUTSTANDING KINDERGARTEN INNOVATION AWARD 2012 - MERIT
Learning Chinese, according to our kindergarteners, was dull and difficult. Most of them also came from an English-speaking background. Hence, we embarked on a “Chinese Cultural Month” to motivate the children to enjoy learning Chinese and develop an appreciation for Chinese culture.
During the Chinese Cultural Month, the goal of every child was to earn himself a Little Chinese Scholar medal. Children accumulated points by speaking in Mandarin, reading Chinese story books, wearing Chinese costumes to school throughout the 15 days of Chinese New Year, singing Chinese songs and reciting Tang poetry. Learning Chinese became fun and meaningful.
Children made and ate dumplings as well as other Chinese New Year snacks, shared a steamboat meal, played traditional Chinese games and lion dance, designed Beijing face masks, cut Chinese characters from red packets and many other interesting art and craft activities. They visited the Chinatown Heritage Centre and watched a Chinese play. They ate and played their way to experience the Chinese culture and language. Not only did the children become more motivated to learn the language, they also learnt to respect different cultures and were more receptive to trying new cuisines.
Parents were also deeply involved in their children’s learning. They contributed by bringing Chinese story books, read to the children, helped their child practise reciting poetry, taught Chinese calligraphy and even cooked a feast!
Using Chinese Cultural Month as a spring board to learn Chinese for the rest of the academic year greatly enhanced the Chinese programme in our kindergarten.
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The Art of Twisting Tales
Awarded MOE-AECES Outstanding Kindergarten Innovation Award 2011 – Commendation
We used Children's Literature as a platform in our project 'The Art of Twisting Tales'. To facilitate this project, the K2 and Pre-Nursery teachers teamed up to design the curriculum and develop teaching resources using technology and recycled materials. We tapped on our children’s ability to be creative with stories they have heard which led us on an exciting journey of discovery of our children’s imagination.
The project provided opportunities for the older children to take on leadership roles. One of the activities required the K2 children to be reading buddies to their Pre-Nursery friends. The K2 children had to select the picture books carefully, making sure that they were developmentally appropriate , and then reading the stories to their buddies with expression.
In another activity, K2 children composed stories with an emphasis on character values using the Pre-Nursery children’s 3-D artwork inspired by Eric Carle. These stories were made into audio-visual books. They then adapted familiar board games to create new games based on their group stories - these games even included concepts of language and numeracy. Similarly, these games were presented in the digital format. We were pleasantly surprised to see them collaborate so well, and were encouraged by their display of responsibility and determination throughout the project.
Next, the children independently wrote stories, which they published into books. In the process, they learned about editing and writing for an audience. It was a rich learning experience because all the stories composed by the children have their roots in the traditional tales and good books they have read.
Parents were definitely pleased to see their children acquiring the art of twisting tales and we were proud that our young authors have helped create more curriculum resources for our kindergarten. The success of this project has spurred us to continue implementing kindergarten-wide literacy programmes based upon this model and also motivated our teachers to develop their personal capabilities.
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Awarded the MOE-AECES Outstanding Kindergarten Innovation Awards 2010 – MERIT
Little Olympics brought the Singapore Youth Olympics Games (YOG) a new dimension and Olympics fever warmed the hearts of many children, teachers and parents at Far Eastern Kindergarten (FEK). This YOG themed school-wide project brought about child-initiated research, crafts and problem solving that were facilitated through online tools, community resources and fascinating visits to the Youth Olympics Learning Centre. The children interviewed the experts, participated in coaching clinics by parent experts, simulated the journey of the Olympic torch and played host to the YOG team and adorable Leo and Merly. The kindergarten weaved the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect into regular school programmes by incorporating Olympics-related Show and Tell, News Bulletin, Dress-Up days and Outdoor Play. Such learning opportunities, available in both English and Chinese, were crucial to developing the children physically, aesthetically, cognitively and socially.
In the spirit of the games, the FEK community worked hard to pull together resources from teachers, parents, experts of YOG and the children to make our own “Little Olympics” possible and enjoyable. Little Olympics is now an annual sporting event at FEK to celebrate National Day.
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Winner of 2009 MOE-AECES Innovation Award (Distinction)
This is in recognition to the kindergarten for implementing the most innovative project & promoting a culture of innovation.
"This project utilises the interactive board and supporting software with other technological devices (digital and video cameras, PC, online access etc.) to create centre-based flipcharts, electronic story books and portfolios using photographs and video recordings of children's learning experiences and art work. Children crafted spoof stories of the dinosaur extinction theories based upon research gathered from fiction and non-fiction books, natural history websites, the NLB learning portal and personal experiences garnered from daily living and current trends. Using macromedia flash and flipcharts, the children's stories were animated.