At Little Footprints Preschool, we always believe in cultivating strong traits and values in our children from a young age, nurturing them into well-balanced children.
This term, we are delighted to collaborate with New Hope Community Services to raise awareness on the issue of homelessness. During the COVID-19 period, there has been a rise in displaced individuals in our community. We believe that children need to be given a variety of opportunities and exposure to enhance their character development.
Session 1: Introducing Rough Sleepers to the children
To introduce the topic of homelessness, our teachers prepared a newspaper article and an activity for the children during their weekly current affairs sharing. After learning that there are many less fortunate people in Singapore, our children drew their most valued possessions and the important people around them. The children then presented their artwork to their peers and also shared how they would feel without these valued possessions.
Session 2: Being in Rough Sleepers’ Shoes
Without homes or a safe place to sleep, rough sleepers often experience unpleasant experiences such as thefts and getting drenched in the rain upon resting in public spaces. To deepen the understanding of rough sleepers, our children participated in a sensorial activity to put themselves in rough sleepers’ shoes.
Many faced being displaced from their housing due to domestic violence, financial difficulties, mental health, and poor interpersonal relationships. Through the activity, our children roleplayed as rough sleepers, thieves and they simulated rain as well. They took turns to be a rough sleeper, sleeping on a piece of cardboard. After the activity, most of our children shared that they feel uncomfortable and sad when they imagine that the cardboard is their home. By sharing these with our children, we reinforce values that have been taught – caring, compassion, and kindness.
Session 3: Reflecting and expressing their thoughts
After weeks of sharing and engaging in activities related to homelessness, our children brainstormed and shared how they can help the rough sleepers. It was heartening to see our children empathizing and coming up with ways to help.
One of the many ideas was to build a home for them. With that, our children tapped into their critical thinking skills and ‘built’ different homes using straws, recycled boxes, and other materials.
Final Session: Uncle Lim and Super Sam
The final session of our Build-A-Little-Home project. After watching the video ‘Uncle Lim and Super Sam’, our children took turns participating in a simple puppet story. They thought of different ways on how they could save Uncle Lim from sleeping on the bench in the park. During the session, our children displayed great empathy for Uncle Lim and also expressed gratitude to their parents for building them a home.
To end off this meaningful project, each child was given a cardboard house to assemble, decorate and bring home to save up. They were encouraged to donate a small amount so that they can help the rough sleepers.
Be the reason for others to have hope again, a little goes a long way. One step at a time, we can build a strong and better future for Singapore together!