Children learn in many different ways. Some kids learn through visual aids, some learn through songs, while others learn by moving around. Whether your child learns best through listening to songs or by watching his teacher and peers, Kinderland’s wholesome and sound academic curriculum and teaching methodology supports their aim in creating a holistic development for your child, at the same time providing a solid foundation in preparing your child for formal schooling.
Here are three programs which are uniquely Kinderland.
1. Kinder Children’s Music Program
For auditory, visual and kinesthetic learners
It’s 10.30am and the K1s are having their music class with their music teacher. With a room specially dedicated for music lessons, there are 7 electric keyboards (Electones) for each student to learn and practice on. These lessons are conducted by professionally-qualified music teachers.
K1 children attending the Children’s Music Programme (CMP) at Kinderland Marine Parade. Kinderland is the first to incorporate keyboard music in preschool curriculum to advance early childhood development in 1978. Photo: TNAP
With an aim to develop children’s musical sensitivity, cultivate creativity and allow children to express themselves through music, Kinderland Children’s music programme integrates music with language. At the Pre-nursery level, Kinderland’s Twinkleland and Music Gems, conducted once a week for Nursery level children compasses listening, singing, rhythm training, music and movement, music with story and ensemble performance.
Dr Carol Lay, Curriculum Director of Kinderland encourage parents to sing happy songs with their children.” Don’t underestimate the power of nursery rhymes. Songs help children to connect to their memories and happy music will help trigger these happy memories in children.”
The courses also help children to improve their concentration, boost self-confidence, enhance their speech, express themselves better, and further develop sensory motor abilities, amongst others.
Kindergarten children (5 years and above) will be introduced to weekly keyboard lessons to further develop their hearing, singing, keyboard playing and notation reading skills.
“Keyboards and electones have a softer touch compared to the piano. Exposing children to keyboard playing is highly beneficial because it activates and stimulates the small muscles and develops their fine motor skills. Furthermore, when children play on the keyboard, they unknowingly do brain exercises.
For example, when they cross their hands to play certain notes, this causes their hands to cross the body mid-point and by doing such cross lateral movements, the right brain is connected to the left body movement and vice-versa. Scientific studies have shown that such exercises help to stimulate the brain and keeps it active.” Dr Lay explains.
2. Writing to Read Program (WTR)
For visual and kinesthetic learners
Targeted at the Kindergarten 1 and 2 children, Writing to Read Program aims to develop children’s language and literacy skills through technology. A comprehensive computer-based instructional system designed to help children learn to write even before learning to read, it was developed by American Educator Dr John Henry Martin, it is structured based on the phonemic principle.
Looking at the WTR notice board at Kinderland, one will notice that students’ works are not handwritten but are printed out, accompanied by their drawings.
With the teacher’s assistance, each child will get to use a computer in the WTR room. Children will first write their thoughts on paper, before using the computer to type and print it out.
A K1 student’s writing. Photo: TNAP
Nitthia Krishnana, Principal of Kinderland Childcare at Marine Parade Centre explains about the invented spellings or ‘mis-spellings’ on some of the children’s works.
“The idea is not to get children to produce a piece of perfect writing, but for them to enjoy the process and experience of learning to read and write through the use of technology: for example using the keyboard to type, maneuvering the mouse, and that sense of accomplishment when they see their own work printed out.” Nitthia explains.
Kinderland is the first kindergarten in Singapore to implement computer-aided learning to enhance literacy and creative writing skills for pre-schoolers in 1987. Photo: TNAP
3. KinderFit Programme
For kinesthetic learners
Picture this: A group of 3-year-old kids in two teams, each team with a gym ball as big as them. Their goal is to work together as a team, and roll the giant gym ball from point A to point B as a team. First, they each try to push the ball on their own. But after some guidance from their teacher, the kids slowly start to work with one another on how they can move the ball together. Now, each team is waiting for the teacher’s cue and ready to roll!
This is just one of the many activities included in the KinderFit programme.
Moving and Learning: Developing Fundamental Movement Skills
Through such activities, fundamental physical movement skills such as fine, gross and coordination skills will be honed. Your child will also acquire other important life skills such as self-confidence, cooperation and leadership skills. Children from Pre-Nursery classes (3 years old) and above will attend KinderFit classes in a dedicated room in the Centre, with ample running space, cushioned mats, coloured gym blocks, and mirrored walls.
Use of Music and Themes
Exercises are complemented with music and the school’s theme. What we really like are how storylines are woven into the fitness activities. Instead of simply throwing a bean bag into the basket, cute animal bean bags are used and children are encouraged to ‘save the animals’ by getting them back safely in their ‘homes’.
Music is also used in the KinderFit programme. For example, specially selected songs with meaningful lyrics that build social values, self-esteem and confidence are used in the warm-up, main activity and cool down sessions.
Conducted weekly, each 30 minute lesson covers both aerobic and strengthening exercises. Students are assessed on their development skills at the end of each term (10 weeks) according to a checklist developed by the Kinderland Curriculum team.
Mr Mohammed Azhar, Senior Lecturer and Teaching Practicum Coordinator of the Physical Education and Sports Science at National Institute of Education, who is also one of the KinderFit Programme creators, recommends the following fundamental movements for children aged 3 – 6 years old.
3 – 4 years
- Locomotor movements such as Hopping, kicking and crawling
- Non-locomotor movements such as balancing, bending and curling
- You may also start with basic object control activities such as throwing and catching balls overhead
5 – 6 years
- Locomotor movements such as galloping, sliding and rolling
- Non-locomotor movements such as balancing on a beam and walking backwards
- Object control activities can be extended to include dribbling, trapping and passing balls
Looking for a rich, holistic curriculum for your child? Kinderland may just be the school for your visual, auditory or active child.
For a list of Kinderland Child Care and Preschools, visit www.kinderland.com.sg