Tuition: Choice or necessity?

Tuition_thumb.jpg"IT just makes me feel that I have done my best to prepare my children for stressful examinations", says a parent. No matter whether it is mathematics or Mother Tongue or perhaps every other subject, parents want the best for their children, especially when it comes to' education. This feature story brings together perspectives on tuition from education stakeholders like the Ministry of Education, parents and tutors, why parents hire tutors, and what makes a good tutor. See also story on Tutor hunt: What can you do first as a parent.

 

Continue Reading

Instill a joy of writing: 3 terrific things to try

Writing_1.jpgIS your child blogging? Maybe on a community site? If one were to browse through the many social networking sites (like Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Friendster, hi5 and Orkut, to name a top few reviewed by the Social Networking Websites Review), the expressive capacity of our children is quite apparent. Aside from ensuring such engaging of the online space is done in a safe way (see this story), knowledge of such involvement presents an opportunity to guide the development of writing skills. Of course there are other non-online settings in which we can promote expression through writing.

In this part of the Expressions series, we describe a few simple ways in which we can engage our child to explore his or her creativity through writing and related activities, and find joy in it.

Continue Reading

'Messing about' on paper and the power of self-expression

Writing_2.jpgMANY are the online avenues available to a child keen to submit their sundry thoughts and perspectives of things happening around them. Using any one of the ubiquitous internet-enabled devices, he or she can access public sites that offer blogging space. Or they can sign on to social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Friendster, hi5 and Orkut, to name a top few reviewed by the Social Networking Websites Review.

However, not every child may have the confidence or be inclined to use them because perhaps they either fear the act of writing or find it simply boring especially with the PSP or Nintendo gaming device handy! So can we create the conditions to make writing a natural and even an exciting activity? Can we excite our child about writing? Art, story-telling, imagination, daily life, and reading are a few of the springboards and resources we can use.

Part of the Expressions series, this article explores some of the key conditions that can help to turn writing into a positive developmental activity.

Continue Reading

Expressions - the child writer's challenges

Writing_3(1).jpgTHE explosion of internet-enabled devices have empowered many a budding writer to offer their opinions on sundry topics via personal blogs and social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Friendster, hi5 and Orkut which are among the top few cited by Social Networking Websites Review. But it can sometimes be a challenge to bring out the writer in your child especially when their attention is also drawn to a multitude of mentally-engaging multimedia games and gaming devices that of course develop different aspects of your child to equip him/her for today's age. In this Expressions series of articles we discuss the challenges one could face to nurture writing beginning with the home environment, and suggest ways on how to 'switch on' the writer in your child.

Continue Reading

Better PSLE 2009 results? Subject-based banding may have helped your child

PSLE2009_thumb.jpgSUBJECT-based banding may have helped your child to do better in this year's PSLE. Introduced in 2008, this Singapore Ministry of Education (MOE) education strategy refines the earlier streaming process by taking into account the child's strengths and interests to offer a greater flexibility of learning pace. It also allows the child to interact with familiar classmates during standard subjects lessons, and continue to grow existing friendships forged in earlier years.

Continue Reading