Besides play time, some of the best childcare centres in Singapore are incorporating themed-based, experiential learning to support children’s development.
Find out why rote learning and memorisation are taking a back seat when it comes to nurturing young kids.
What is theme-based learning in early childhood education?
Children learning through a theme are learning in context. With a key theme for lessons, activities are integrated to meet different learning objectives, thereby developing a multitude of skills.
Theme-based learning allows children of different learning needs and abilities to participate and make connections to retain knowledge.
How do children learn through experiential learning?
Education Philosopher, John Dewey, believes that children are born to explore, be active and inquisitive. His learning-by-doing theory (or Experiential Education) has translated into a pedagogy that celebrates the “hands-on” approach for young kids.
Through social interaction and communication, children question, seek answers, observe, and learn to draw connections and conclusions about the world as they work on tasks.
Experiential learning in Singapore preschools enables kids to pick up skills that prepare them for primary school
Ready to learn something new yet practical
The joy of learning a new skill or new fact can be pretty exciting!
Through thematic activities, children get to learn across various aspects such as numeracy, literacy, current affairs, artistic expression and even termly field trips. Every activity is carefully planned to integrate and scaffold learning for the little ones.
Curious children enjoy the fun ways to learn new things, fuelling their thirst for knowledge.
Social skills to observe, interact and share ideas
Learning together with their peers offers the opportunity to collaborate.
Some kids may observe first, while others may be excited to partake in the tasks immediately. These intrinsic elements are pockets of growth where children pick up socialisation skills, boosting their personal development.
Experiential education provides kids the freedom to interact with the content being learned. It’s almost open-ended!
Question, reflect and make decisions
Tasks are designed to engage students in direct experiences related to real world problems and situations, so teachers facilitate and respond according to children’s reactions and responses.
Children will need to respectfully listen to what their friends say, ponder and decide what to do next. Active learning is an integral part of Little Footprints Preschool’s curriculum to engage children as a learner.
Problem-solving through various stages
Creativity goes beyond artistic expressions or craft work. When working on activities such as building a vehicle with recycled materials, kids sharpen their thought processes and logic skills. General knowledge is also enhanced as they discuss what works or what does not, which could also include their personal sharing of experiences.
Emotionally, children strengthen their ‘never give up’ attitude. In the face of new expectations or challenging problem sums in primary school, they apply this positive attitude to overcome conflicts or difficult situations through problem-solving steps.
Experience uncertainty, failure and success
Everyone’s experience of a certain activity could be very different. Not every kindergartener is able to do the hula hoop, for example.
With a focus on developing children’s gross and fine motor skills, Fun Fitness is a specialised programme integrated into Little Footprints Preschool’s childcare programme. Besides fun ways of improving their locomotor, object control and stability skills, kids’ fine motor skills are also strengthened.
Step by step, they gain independence and likewise, bring this “I can!” belief with them into their primary school journey.
Draw inferences and gain insights
Research on play-based learning has pointed out that theme-based, experiential learning is ideal for little ones figuring out our world.
Playing enables children to express their social and emotional needs, while learning more about themselves, their friends and things around them. The integration of themes and learning through experience makes it relevant to children.
Find out how lessons are conducted at Little Footprints Preschool
Growing minds reap plenty of benefits through themed-based, experiential learning with their friends and experienced educators.
With an established childcare programme in Singapore that embraces a theme-based curriculum and experiential learning, Little Footprints Preschool’s pedagogical approach is based on I.D.E.A. Our team of education specialists take an Integrated approach to theme-based learning that provides children with progressive learning and Development through Experiential methods and Active learning.
Visit your preferred Little Footprints Preschool centre to find out how lessons are developed to prepare kids for primary school.
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