SINGAPORE - Children enrolled in five new kindergartens run by the Education Ministry will learn through stories, songs and dances with a distinct Singapore flavour.
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MOE's full statement:
Based on the refreshed kindergarten curriculum framework, MOE has developed a curriculum that will be used by the MOE Kindergartens (MKs).
The key features of this curriculum are its distinct Singapore flavour, as well as its two flagship programmes - the Starlight Literacy Programme and the HI-Light Programme.
Curriculum with Distinct Singapore Flavour
Developed by MOE's curriculum specialists, the curriculum features a distinct Singapore flavour which allows children to learn in an authentic context. The teaching and learning resources incorporate local topics, stories, fables, visuals, songs and dances so that children can learn about things and places around them, such as local food, celebrations of festivals and hawker centres.
Not only will children be able to relate better to what they are learning, they will also learn about Singapore traditions and community values to help them build a strong sense of cultural identity. Through the use of local songs, dances and movement, children also strengthen their social and emotional, aesthetic, physical, and language and literacy development.
The curriculum is organised around themes. The four themes are: "Who am I?", "Who are the people and what are the places around me?", "Who do I share the world with?" and "How do things work?".
Each theme includes topics that are familiar to children and allows them to explore and learn about themselves and their friends, the people and places around them in Singapore and in the world beyond.
Each term, children will embark on a WOW project during the Week of Wonder (WOW) to investigate topics of their interest. Through the projects, children make their own decisions and experience the joy of self-directed learning to build their confidence and strengthen their dispositions towards learning.
Specially Developed Programmes by MOE
The Starlight Literacy Programme aims to nurture early childhood bilingualism. It is offered in both English (EL) and the Mother Tongue Languages (MTLs), taking into consideration the diverse home language backgrounds of the children.
Starlight Literacy in EL and MTL is designed based on the unique linguistic and cultural aspects of the respective language. While the teaching and learning resources are unique to each language, they share a common pedagogic approach that focuses on listening and speaking, the use of songs and stories set in the local context and a systematic development of early literacy skills through Shared Reading using Big Books.
The HI-Light Programme supports holistic development of children through an integrated approach. It consists of integrated learning experiences, which are planned to help children make sense of the world around them.
This is important as children learn from their experiences and do not compartmentalise what they learn. An integrated activity typically provides a context for teaching knowledge and skills in two to three learning areas (see Annex B for an example of a HI-Light activity).
Delivery of the Curriculum
Teachers will use two core pedagogies to engage children in learning: first, purposeful play, where children are participating in activities that are enjoyable and deliberately planned to achieve important learning outcomes.
Second, quality interactions, where teachers use prompts and ask key questions to engage children in conversations to help them build on ideas and concepts. The teachers will be supported by a professional development network including MOE's curriculum specialists.
Sharing of the MOE Kindergarten Resources with Sector
MOE will share the curriculum as well as teaching and learning resources being piloted at the MKs with other pre-school operators to help catalyse quality improvements in pre-school education across Singapore.
MOE is conducting information sessions for parents and children who are enrolled in the MKs to share the MOE Kindergarten curriculum with them. The sessions will be held on 31 August and 21 September 2013.
More information is available at http://www.moekindergarten.edu.sg/others/events-n-news.