I find looking for schools tough. As a parent, I have my ideas about how I want to raise my children, so I like the concept of holistic education. I like the idea of setting kids up for personal rather than academic success. That’s why, during the search for my child’s school, I would ask the following questions:“What is the school about?” and “What personal qualities do they foster in their students?”I was pretty impressed with the response of The Grange Institution to these questions because they’re all about creating thoughtful individuals. They have created an avatar – The Grange Kid – and they use this as their focus in designing their curriculum. The Grange Kids are archetypes of the children that the school wishes to develop for the future world.Who is The Grange Kid?According to the school, The Grange Kids are truly global citizens. “As a result, they see the Earth as their home and recognise that they have an active role to play in the community where they live. Being internationally-minded, they embrace similarities and differences between cultures. The Grange Kids have genuine respect for other people, plants and animals, and the environment. They are passionate individuals who understand the meaning in relationships they have with others.”It takes eight to createIn addition to adopting the avatar, the school has connected a philosophy to The Grange Kids notion that ties in with the number eight. “We believe The Grange Kids can be ‘Cre8tors’. We create a learning ecosystem where conditions exist to support the development of The Grange Kid through a unique Cre8tors-in-Action philosophy that focuses on developing eight key competencies and eight key personal attributes” The Grange Kid Cre8tes!Let’s take a look firstly at the eight key competencies that The Grange Kid is expected to develop. What I like about these is that none of them are academic. Instead, they are transferrable skills that are foundational for creating other successes in life:Construction and design: The ability to conceptualise an idea and take it from design to the final product.Respecting the environment: The ability to implement sustainable practices to respect, care for and protect the environment.Entrepreneurial spirit: The ability to identify a niche, then market and deliver an idea for a product or a cause to a target audience.Active citizenship: The ability to take personal, localised or far-reaching action for causes they are passionate about.Teamwork and partnership: The ability to collaborate with different partners and to adopt different roles in a group to achieve a common goal.Original ideas: The ability to challenge their thinking to come up with new and original ideas.Recognising issues: The ability to research and be aware of issues affecting humanity on a personal, community or global basis.Service leadership: The ability and passion to devote time and energy to community causes that they are passionate about. The Grange Kid is curious!Personal goalsThese are eight personal goals that the school wants The Grange Kid to aspire to:Adaptability: “I can cope with unfamiliar situations and approach tasks from different perspectives and explore different strategies.”Communication: “I can use a variety of tools and technologies to communicate my ideas and thoughts in different contexts and for different audiences.”Collaboration: “I can work with different people and adopt different roles depending on the needs of the group and the tasks at hand.”Critical Thinking: “I can identify and think through issues by considering different perspectives and developing my reasoned point of view.”Inquiry: “I can ask and consider searching questions related to my learning and to carry out research and investigations related to those questions.”Integrity: “I am honest. I act appropriately according to my moral standpoint and can explain the reasons for my actions.”Resilience: “I can stick with a task from beginning to end. I can cope with disappointment when I fail. I aim to keep trying and not give up easily.”Respect: “I can maintain self-discipline and show empathy and care for other people, living things and the environment.”These blueprints have children in mind. But it’s worth remembering that these are characteristics that we could all use as a compass, even as adults. These are the ingredients for a truly engaged citizen of the 21st century.Find out moreIf you would like your child to experience this approach that embraces holistic education, The Grange Institution is taking enrolments for Semester 2 of the 2020-2021 academic year. Click here to learn more about the team there!The Grange Institution is at 449 Yio Chu Kang Roadthegrange.edu.sg | 6817 3630Interested in reading more about schools in Singapore? Check out our Schools section, and then read on for more: Keep the kids busy over the holidays at these holiday campsNeed some fresh air? Check out these outdoor gems!
15th June 2020 by Kate Marsden 3 Min ReadFinding a preschool in Singapore (well, anywhere!) that ticks all of the boxes can be tough. With 16 centres across the island, we’ve got five solid reasons to check out this Singapore preschool group – Kinderland – plus a bonus recipe! Got your attention now? Read on!#1 Kinderland preschools started with a musical missionKinderland was founded in 1978 with a mission to provide a program that had music at its core. Integrated curriculums that incorporate movement and music have been shown to enhance children’s language literacy. So far, Kinderland has stayed true to its founding philosophy – the children take music classes and learn keyboard, percussion, singing and rhythm. Sounds fun, right?#2 Finding a preschool in Singapore where your child can become an all-rounder!Besides the music-based program, Kinderland offers a range of classes for preschoolers; a bilingual programme teaching English and Chinese, literacy using IT and tech, KinderFit Cardio-Wellness and STREAM (Science, Technology, Reading and wRiting, Engineering, Arts and Maths). These help to develop children as a whole, exposing them to a variety of activities. This gives them a chance to land on a few things that they enjoy and love, which is important for building their confidence.By the age of six when a Kinderland child graduates from their Singapore preschool, they will minimally be able to play an instrument, read, write and express their thoughts fluently. Just the start every kid needs! It’s never too early to learn to love learning#3 Kinderland has corporate partnerships (hint… you may be able to get a discount!)Imagine finding a preschool in Singapore where pick-up and drop-off can be done at your place of work. That’s the dream, right? Kinderland provides preschool and also infant care services to several organisations by having centres located in the building where those offices are. Most of these centres in the workplace are open for enrolment to members of the public as well.If there isn’t a centre available in your building, no worries! They also have a corporate tie-up programme with many companies, offering a preferential rate to the staff of these partners. Visit the website to find out more about these corporate partnerships and to get in touch with Kinderland about them.#4 Kinderland is accredited as a Healthy Preschool!What is a ‘Healthy Preschool’ anyway? Well, the Healthy Preschool Accreditation recognises pre-schools that tick the boxes of having comprehensive school health promotion practices for students, parents and staff. A Healthy Preschool passes these ABCs:A: The preschool needs to be a supportive environment that provides healthy meals and actively promotes time for movement.B: The school will help build positive habits for sustained health in kids.C: The preschool educates and equips the staff and parents with the right information to promote these behaviours both in and outside the classroom. Grub’s up at this certified Healthy Preschool!#5 The menu has been designed by an in-house nutrition professional!Every dish on the Kinderland menu is planned by a certified nutrition professional. The balanced menu provides everything that a growing preschooler needs to be active and to thrive. Kinderland believes that exercise and a nutritious diet is essential for a child’s physical development. It’s also important to tie in a balanced diet with exercise and positive habit-forming behaviour. The regular exercise and meal times also put children into the right headspace for learning; active and engaged.The food is so good at Kinderland, we thought we’d give you sneak peek of what’s on offer! So, we’ve included one of the kid’s favourite recipes below. This one is an excellent source of vitamins E and C, while also packed with antioxidants, and rich in protein and important minerals such as zinc and selenium – all the goodies to keep young bodies nourished and healthy, and ready to learn and play!! (And who doesn’t love some avo and eggs on toast?)Avocado ToastIngredients: wholemeal toast, avocado, egg, fresh baby spinach (serves one)Instructions:Cook fresh baby spinach over medium heat in a frying pan, then set aside.Crack an egg into the same frying pan and cook over medium heat until fully cooked. Set aside.Mash the avocado with a fork and spread evenly on a piece of wholemeal toast.Top the avocado toast with spinach and egg.Season with salt and black pepper to taste.Kinderland has 16 centres across the island.6881 8818 | kinderland.com.sg If you’re looking for more articles on early childhood, then have a look at these:Great online activities and classes to do at homeSTEM and STEAM: What are they? And how are they taught?