Most preschools, childcare centres and kindergartens in Singapore are closed on Children’s Day, which is commemorated on the first Friday of October each year.
This year, instead of bringing your child to play outdoors, how about embarking on some meaningful activities with your child? From volunteering with therapy dogs to beach cleaning, take your pick from the list of activities that help to instill the value of compassion in your child.
How children attending preschool, childcare centres and kindergartens in Singapore can make a difference this Children’s Day.
1. Clean up litter
Keeping our environment clean of litter is a way of taking responsibility for the world we live in. You can choose to pick up litter around your neighbourhood, or at the beach. Prepare a pair of cotton gloves, a large garbage bag, hand sanitiser and a pair of tongs for hygiene purposes.
Before the activity, have a chat with your child on the topic of trash and what happens when trash enters the waterways and drains.
2. Help to maintain a farm
Being outdoors is highly beneficial for children and adults alike, with the sun providing much needed Vitamin D.
Children attending kindergarten in Singapore can participate in Ground Up Initiative’s farm maintenance programme, where they can help to pull weeds, plant seeds and even help to harvest vegetables that are then sold to sustain the non-profit organisation.
3. Share blessings with underprivileged children in Singapore
Blessings in a Bag works closely with local communities and organisations in Singapore. These communities include children who are unable to purchase items that are essential to learning, yet are in abundance at other homes, such as children’s books, coloured pencil sets, jigsaw puzzles and activity books.
While packing your in-kind donation with your child, get them to understand the true meaning of sharing. They can think of it as packing gifts for friends, and as such, items in undesirable condition are unsuitable as donations.
4. Show appreciation to service staff
Underappreciated and often hurled with insults when things go awry, service staff serving in the community often have a thankless job.
Children’s Day in Singapore can be spent meaningfully by writing notes of appreciation to the service staff that your child encounters on a daily basis. It could be the bus driver who plies your neighbourhood route, the postman who faithfully delivers letters and parcels, librarians or the cleaners helping to keep the streets litter-free.
5. Donate unexpired, excess dry food rations
The Food Bank is a registered charity that’s focused on reducing food waste and diverting it to less privileged persons.
This Children’s Day in Singapore, go through your pantry with your child to see if there are any excess food items that were purchased on a whim or not to your fancy. These excess food products can be dropped off at a Food Bank Box at these locations.
6. Donate books to help persons with special needs develop entrepreneurial skills
At Dignity Mama, young adults with special needs have a platform where they are gainfully employed and can learn the intricacies of running a secondhand book store. You can assist your child in preschool in Singapore to contribute to this project by setting aside new and preloved books in saleable condition.
7. Volunteer with therapy dogs at nursing homes and healthcare institutions
It is said that dogs are man’s best friend. Therapy Dogs Singapore is a voluntary organisation that provides physical, social and emotional therapy using therapy dogs. This Children’s Day in Singapore, volunteer with your child and dog (if you have one) to bring smiles to patients living in nursing homes and healthcare institutions.
Putting the needs of others before oneself is a way of showing compassion. Compassion is a value that is best taught by experience; this can be learned by allowing your child to give back to the community.
Written by Jamie Koh
At MindChamps PreSchool, one of the values that we instil in children is compassion.
Find out how our Champion teachers incorporate this important life value in their lessons.