SINGAPORE - In a darkened room, a projector flashes moving images of the underwater world as five small children mill around the screen, trying to match plastic fishes with the ones swimming above their heads.
Next door, a group of eight youngsters are busy shoving canned and fresh fruits into their mouths one by one.
"Instead of explaining to them which is healthier, we let them taste the difference for themselves," said childcare teacher Nur Syazwani Sutarman.
These activities are part of a typical day for children attending the first Hampton pre-school on Bishan Street 13. The centre is the PAP Community Foundation's first collaboration with a private operator, EtonHouse, which provides expertise in early childhood education.
The arrangement means parents get a childcare programme offered by a brand-name operator at an affordable price.
They are charged about $727 a month for a full-day programme. Housed at a void deck, the centre is accessible for families living in the heartland.
By contrast, most of EtonHouse's pre-schools are in private estates and commercial buildings.
The centre's curriculum emphasises inquiry-based learning that is centred around projects instead of sticking to a fixed timetable of English, maths or science lessons.