Children’s day weekend is one of the best times for the family to spend time playing together and building bonds.
At Octoburst, a festival put together by Esplanade, there are many activities which the whole family can take part together.
Outdoor activities are the ones where fathers would be interested in.
A Pipe-ful Play Garden
A Pipe-ful Play Garden which has started as a pre-festival feature is the perfect place to have some fun in the sun! Children who havea green thumb and/or love putting things together can grow their very own little pocket garden and together with other children, construct a living and ever-growing pipe-maze for everyone to play with.
This community artwork that encourages learning and family-bonding through play is created by Playeum, Singapore’s first Children’s Centre for Creativity. Focused on bringing play back into children’s lives, this activity was developed in collaboration with architect and designer Chih Wen Chaw. This is a perfect opportunity for fathers who love DIY stuff to build something with their children.
On 9th October, this space will become a vibrant garden!
Snakes and Ladders
There will also be a life- sized version of snakes and ladders for the family to have some board game fun!
Imagining the City: A Sensory Walkabout ($28 per adult-child pair)
On 9 October 2:30pm, join Moses Tan as he brings you around Esplanade to shade unusual and interesting textures using a French technique called frottage. Using the textures that they have collected during the walk, parent and child will work together to create an artwork of an imaginary city.
If you prefer the indoors, there are also no lack of activities to take part in.
In the House
Esplanade, together with Playeum, co-curated this activity which features artist-educators who will share with parents how the arts, fun and purposeful play can be used at home to support the learning and growth of their little ones. There is an interesting line-up over the 3 days.
These are some of the activities lined up:
(full schedule: https://www.esplanade.com/festivals-and-series/octoburst/2015/in-the-house)
Join the Imagin8ors – Tomorrow’s Imagineers! for all three mornings from 11am to create your own moving machine (9 and 11 Oct) and musical instrument using Makey Makey (10 and 11 Oct) which will delight you for many hours at home. Tomorrow’s Imagineers! is a 2 part series of fun activities hosted by Imagin8ors that are designed for your child and you to tinker with technology and intersect it with art. Inspire and develop your child’s curiosity andexplore and play with Motion and Sound.
Imagin8ors is an exciting Education Technology startup backed by Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) and Infocomm Investments, and PlugandPlay (a leading technology accelerator based in Silicon Valley). We are about Nurturing imagination and inherent creative potential of each child through deeper learning experiences. We design workshops and digital solutions where parents and children can engage and co-create together.
“At Imagin8ors we recognize and promote play as the cornerstone for learning today and in the future. Children engage in the process of hands-on creative play with little intervention from adults, constructing meaning in their daily lives. We believe that play is intelligence, necessary for cognitive development, fundamental to imagination and creativity.”
Barbara Beaufait, Chief Learning Officer
Passionate parents from Science Centre’s “Busy Hands, Happy Hearts” book also believe that the act of Making with your own hands is a fundamental step to learning and nurturing creativity. Come join them in “Light Play” to explore and tinker with light to discover how art, craft, Science and Technology can come together to create a fantastic creative experience for you and your family. They are also in daily in the afternoons!
There will also be a permanent display of upcycled clothing by Agatha Lee from Greens Issues by Agy. "Upcycle and Weave" showcases upcycling possibilities that the kids can try out with their parents at home. The set up will include T-shirts, cut t-shirt, samples and a woven t-shirt stool as well as a loom for kids to try their hands at weaving old clothes into something new . Agatha believes that this is a great initiative to get kids thinking about their possessions, the need to treasure them, and if they really don't need them, upcycle or recycle them.
Seema Dadlani-Ramchand and Harsha Dadlani-Dhalani, a pair of sisters who believes that reading gives them to the opportunity to bond, learn and grow together will be reading from their Jayden and Janelle Book Series. The series which is supported by the SG50 Celebration Fund, comprises 6 exciting titles featuring familiar sights such as the HDB estate, Esplanade and Gardens by the Bay; local food such as chicken rice and ice-kacang; and colloquial terms such as 'uncle' and 'aunty'. The stories also embed social values including family bonding and eating together, racial harmony as well as neighbourliness. Catch Seema and Harsha’s storytelling session on 10 Oct at 1:15pm and on 11 Oct from 4:30pm onwards.
“We hope that the Jayden and Janelle book series inspires parents to read with their children and instills strong family values while learning about the Singapore culture.”
Seema Dadlani-Ramchand & Harsha Dadlani-Dhalani
You can also have a chance to create stories with your children through an improvisational story game – “How to find your Big Red Dot”. Join Father and Son team Calvin & Dylan Soh for this Creative Confidence class on 9 Oct 4-6pm.
If you have green fingers, come learn how to make your own pocket garden and/or learn about DIY composting! These activities complement Playeum’s A Pipeful Play Garden at the Courtyard. Permaculture Designer Nova Nelson aims to reunite urban cultures with nature one small foodscape at a time. During her workshop “Urban Composting and DIY Pipe Planting”, Nova will share tips and tricks to composting in an urban setting and include a hands-on session on herb propagation in space saving pipe planters. Come make your very own mini pipe planter with Nova on 10 Oct 2pm-4pm.
Nova Nelson sums up the essence aptly:
"We live in a time that calls for more purposefulness on this planet. Every family can play a role. But we get a little stuck and ask ourselves - how can we make a difference? Where should we start?
In the House is a thoughtful curation of individuals and families making a difference through a DIY spirit that will help us create, collaborate and connect with each other. The many workshops will offer experiences and ideas for you and your family to try and explore together."
Come with your family to join these inspiring individuals in the house!
My Bright-Light Idea! ($28 per adult-child pair)
Daddies, have you ever wanted to make something on your own but never quite got started? At this workshop, you will learn how to turn an unused piece of cardboard into a brand new night-light in this upcycling workshop. Come up with the zaniest design, snip away and make your very own night-light to bring home! This is a workshop conducted by the Sustainable Living Lab (SL2), a social innovation lab. With a vision to create a sustainable world via a purposeful maker culture, they help communities and organizations run purposeful hardware hackathons, help makers through technology programs and spend time crafting sustainable products.
This is great time to bond with your children as you let your creative juices flow and learn about upcycling.
Other fun activities for the family to enjoy include:
Imagine a scenario where our children are not only comfortable creating with technology, but also have fun experimenting and solving problems together.
This dream, envisioned by Mr Steve Leonard, Executive Deputy Chairman of the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) is becoming a reality with IDA's PlayMaker Programme.
At the launch of PlayMaker Programme on 21 September, Mr Leonard shared that : “As Singapore becomes a Smart Nation, our children will need to be comfortable creating with technology. We are very excited that our Playmaker programme gives children the tools not only to have fun, but also to experiment and problem solve together, building up their confidence and creativity.”
It is indeed apt that the launch was at PCF Yuhua Blk 233A, within the Jurong Lake District Smart Nation Test bed. Minister Grace Fu was also there to witness the launch and had a chance to play with the technology-enabled toys. The children were all excited to show Minister Fu how the toys were played and were totally engaged throughout the session.
During the Proof of Concept stage at Temasek Polytechnic, findings suggest that children get more out of their play when they have a chance to create and problem solve. The toys also gave children a chance to learn about sequencing, collaboration and planning. These findings will be taken into consideration during the pilot phase with 160 preschools.
PlayMaker @ Early Childhood Conference and Exhibition 25-26 Sep
A carousel of fun and exciting activities were showcased at the PlayMaker booth during the 3rd Annual Early Childhood Conference and Exhibition organised by Early Childhood Development Agency. It was indeed the highlight of the event with a constant stream of children eagerly awaiting their turn to have a go at the child-friendly and technology-enabled toys. It was indeed a first of a kind experience for many participants.
Here's an introduction to the technology-enabled toys:
BeeBot is a colourful, easy-to-operate and friendly little robot that is perfect for teaching young children sequencing, estimation, problem-solving and planning skills.
KIBO is a robot kit specifically designed for young children aged 4-7 years old. It allows the child to create a sequence of instructions (a programme) using the wooden KIBO blocks., They can then scan the blocks with the KIBO body to tell the robot what to do.
With a suite of sophisticated sensors and unique functionalities such as user-recordable sounds and multi-coloured LED lights, Dash & Dot robots can easily capture children’s attention. The interface app incorporates interactive challenges for children to learn independently, and educators have used it in the classroom in social activities that teach sequencing skills, storytelling, and art & craft.
Circuit Stickers are peel-and-stick electronics for crafting circuits. With LED stickers, young children can easily add lights to their art & craft projects using LED stickers. Sensor stickers, that senses light or sound, allow for interactive projects that respond to the environment.
Delighting young and old was also Strawbees, a Kickstarter project launched last year. It is a prototype toy that allows the player to build whatever their imagination can conjure up. Watch out for the robotic hand in the video!
Look out for a PlayMaker pilot at a centre near you!
What is the PlayMaker Programme all about? This programme aims to inspire young children to Play and Make with Tech toys by offering child-friendly, technology-enabled toys that promote tactile and more kinaesthetic experiences to pre-school children in Singapore. Guided by trained teachers, these children will acquire abilities like logical thinking, reasoning, sequencing, estimation and inventive thinking. The toys also encourage them to collaborate in small groups which helps them develop social and communication skills.
It's 4 more days to The Esplanade Theatre’s annual Octoburst! – A Children’s Festival! A festival especially for the 2-12 year-olds. With almost 30 activities, from delightful performances to hands-on workshops, there is definitely something for everyone at Octoburst! over the children’s day weekend.
This year, Octoburst!’s lovely mascot – PIP is born and it has its own fan club for those below 12 years old and below! Pick up a festival guide and go on a Treasure Hunt with PIP! This also serves as a map around Octoburst!’s activities. There are 8 stations to collect the clues and redeem a limited edition Octoburst! gift.
Starting out at the Forecourt Garden, get artistic by adding colours to Doodle City created by Band of Doodlers. There are altogether 18 unique doodle structures for you to work on.
Next, join PIP’s Club at Theatre Info Counter for exclusive privileges and first-hand information on what’s going on at Esplanade. Simply spend $30 (PIP Club members) to bring home your own cuddly PIP plush toy.
Head down to the concourse to pickup treats from generous sponsors. You can also share your photos on Instgram #octoburst to get a free print-out at #Selfie booth at the Upper Concourse.
At the Concert Hall, collect a stamp of PIP at the Info Counter and bring home your very own PIP at D.I.Y – PIP Craft Workshop at the Concert Hall Meeting Point.
Moving along to the Festival Corner, collect stickers on PIP’s Characteristics and paste them on as you walk along Theatre Street.
While you are at the corner, drop by Book Stop to exchange your pre-loved book for a new read. You’ll never know what treasure you might find there.
There are also theatre shows which the young can enjoy at Octoburst!. We would like to recommend 2 theatrical performances here by a children’s theatre company from Bologna, Italy, La Baracca – Testoni Ragazzi. Founded in 1976, La Baracca has been working on enthralling children for the past 30 years with their touching storylines that connect with their young audiences. To date, La Baracca has produced over 140 shows with more than 9,000 performances. Be one of the first to catch these brilliant shows in Singapore!
First up is Casa (Home), which won an “Early Years” award in Bucharest’s International Festival for Children in 2014. Casa tells the story of a grown-up and a child who meet, get to know each other and start to build. Building turns into play, and little by little, they build a story, a structure, a roof, a house. Sometimes the little one pretends to be the grown-up, while the grown-up pretends to be the little one.
Come and be a part of Casa where simple words and movements come together to build a home bursting with imagination.
Performance dates and times:
Fri, 9 Oct 2015: 2pm
Sat, 10 Oct 2015: 4pm
Sun, 11 Oct 2015: 11am & 4pm
Venue: Recital Studio
Another engaging performance by La Baracca is Spot. Spot is a very special stage light. It shines and changes into many shapes and colours, creating magical images that will delight both young and old. The interaction between the actor and the spotlight is touching, almost magical.
Performance dates and times:
Fri, 9 Oct 2015: 11am & 4pm
Sat, 10 Oct 2015: 11am
Sun, 11 Oct 2015: 2pm
Venue: Theatre Studio
In Part 2, we would share how Octoburst! is a family affair, from the child, to the mother, to the father!
Download the full festival programme here: https://www.esplanade.com/~/media/images/events/o/octoburst-festival-guide.pdf
Team @ Preschool Market
We are just very passionate for the Early Childhood sector!