It was with much excitement that Asia’s first tinkering studio - The Tinkering Studio at Science Centre Singapore (SCS) Hall E was launched last Friday 22 January 2016 by Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and a firm supporter of the maker movement in Singapore. Developed in partnership with the renowned The Exploratorium in San Francisco, California, this studio features numerous activities that require participants to “think with their hands”.
At the launch, Associate Professor Lim Tit Meng, SCS Chief Executive and Er Chong Kee Sen, Institution of Engineers Singapore President also signed a memorandum of understanding to promote science and engineering among the young. Both parties hope to strengthen their existing collaboration through talks, forums, symposia and various other outreach events.
SCS hopes that the young would visit The Tinkering Studio to immerse themselves in physical exploration and knowledge construction. To be sure, this is one place where you can see children’s faces light up with excitement upon making a discovery. And it is the wish of SCS that through activities at the studio, children will develop a love for science and experimentation.
The Tinkering Studio is a place that completely engages the children’s senses once they enter.
Scribble Bot –Visitors can create their own Scribble Bot, or drawing machine, with motors, wires, batteries and everyday materials and, in the process, learn about basic circuitry. At the end of the day, each design will be unique to its creator. Check the website for the activity schedule at http://www.science.edu.sg/exhibitions/Pages/TinkeringStudio.aspx
All said, The Tinkering Studio is a great place to explore as a family (admission is free for all Science Centre ticket holders). It is a time for parents to impart their hands-on skills to their children and for the children to learn to think with their hands. As Professor Lim Tit Meng, Chief Executive of SCS, said: “learning through discovery and experimentation, tinkering, is what will stay with the students, the young for life.”
Finally, the much-anticipated finale of Project Tinker Kit took place on 19 December 2015. Preschool Market organized the promised pop-up exhibition to display the masterpieces created by participants of the four-month-long project. Parents and children alike were delighted, if not excited to see their works being admired (of course, these were given back to the children after the exhibition).
We were pleasantly surprised that after two craft sessions and three months of crafting in school, the children of Le Kottage Childcare Centre could not only work on activities given in the Activities Guide but the teachers also explored various new craft with the children.
It was a time of craft, games and presents at the function room in a condominium in Bukit Gombak as this special event was held in conjunction with Project Love Lunch’s Dear Santa party (www.facebook.com/projectlovelunch).
Preschool Market also conducted a clay session for the preschoolers. Their enthusiasm was boundless and the number of designs they came up with left many amazed. Some even refused to stop for lunch and had to be coaxed to eat!
There were older children at the event as well, given that Project Love Lunch supports children up to 12 years old. So while the younger ones played with clay, they had fun playing charades and bowling.
The children also participated in simple body painting and balloon sculpting.
Another highlight was the photo booth where participants could take photographs with whatever props they wanted and go home with a Polaroid picture of themselves!
And what’s a party without presents? The wishes that the children made were fulfilled by secret Santas at the event. The smiles on their faces were the priceless reward the volunteers craved.
Preschool Market is delighted to have worked alongside Project Love Lunch on this meaningful project. We also would like to take this opportunity to thank all our sponsors and contributors who have made Project Tinker Kit possible. Ah, can you hear the children shouting "Thank you!"?
Team @ Preschool Market
We are just very passionate for the Early Childhood sector!