Passport to knowledge

SINGAPORE - Get transported back to the 1920s as an early Malay settler. From Tanah Melayu, travel to the port town of Kampong Glam in Singapore to trade, using a new activity kit.

This kit is designed to enliven primary school pupils' visits to the Malay Heritage Centre (MHC).

Four students from Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP)'s Arts Business Management diploma programme developed the kits over 11 months as part of a school assignment, amid completing their internships and school modules.

Titled "Passport Singapura", the kit uses interactive activities to help younger visitors get acquainted with the MHC and Kampong Glam.

"It was designed in the form of a passport to allow students to role play," said NP student Carissa Tan, 19. "We wanted to make history come alive in the gallery."

It also comes with a pamphlet for teachers or parents who can guide their charges through the museum.

Pupils have to visit the galleries to complete the booklet. For instance, they will fold a sampan using a page of the book - and hopefully better understand how early immigrants travelled to Singapore. Pupils will also have to roam the galleries to find certain words, in order to complete a wordsearch puzzle.

Just like a real passport, pupils will receive stamps in their booklets upon completion of the tasks.

Miss Noorashikin Zulkifli, head of curation and programmes at the MHC, said: "We hope to add value and enrich the pupils' experience through the use of the booklets."

The MHC will launch the activity booklets from this month. They can be downloaded from the MHC website for free or collected from the Visitor Services Centre for a donation of $1 per booklet.

Charmaine Low, 12, thinks that primary school pupils will be receptive to the booklets.

"When I was younger, my friends and I would always complete the activities for school trips before we reached the destination," said the Primary 6 pupil from Qihua Primary. "Even though we were supposed to start only when we reached."

Jolene Tey, 12, also from Qi Hua Primary, agreed. "Young kids like to solve wordsearch puzzles."

Charmaine added: "However, whether pupils will find it interesting will depend on the level they are in. Upper primary pupils may not be interested as they are older."

This article was first published in The Straits Times' supplement Little Red Dot by the Editorial Projects Unit.

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