Toddlers like to play. A lot. And while experts say that it is important for kids to have enough time to play, when you send your tot to nursery school in Singapore, you probably want to know that plenty of learning takes place too. Specifically – is your child learning the skills that they are typically expected to develop at their age?
To that end, here is a general checklist of learning milestones for toddlers who are attending nursery in Singapore.
Cognitive skills developed in nursery school in Singapore
- Begin to learn and recognise letters and sounds of the alphabet
- Able to follow simple instructions (e.g. three-step directions such as “Wash your hands, sit down, and eat”), as well as understand the order of daily routines (such as the fact that they need to brush their teeth before sleeping)
- Remember and re-tell their favourite stories
- Sing and recite songs and nursery rhymes
- Carry on a conversation for two to three sentences
- Ask “Wh” questions (who, when, where, what, and especially why) that indicate their curiosity
- Demonstrate speech that follows basic rules of grammar (aside from some past and present tense mistakes or words that do not follow the rules, such as mouse/mice or person/people)
- Understand “on,” “in,” “behind,” “in front of,” “next,” “above,” and “below”
- Use numbers and count to ten
- Understand how to sort and sequence (e.g. sorting objects from smallest to largest, or according to likeness)
- Identify about eight colours and three or more shapes
- Engages in pretend/imaginative play (which may involve imaginary friends)
- Problem solve by finding ways to settle disagreements (e.g. asking a classmate to take turns)
- Grasp basic concepts of time, such as “yesterday,” “today,” “tomorrow,” “now” and “later”
Gross and fine motor skills taught in nursery in Singapore
- Climb stairs and age-appropriate play structures
- Run, jump, hop, and walk backwards
- Kick and throw a ball
- Pedal a tricycle
- Turn the pages of a book one at a time
- Build with kids’ building blocks
- Cut with scissors
- Complete simple puzzles (e.g. six to eight pieces)
- Draw circles
- Colour (inside and outside the lines)
The above is quite an impressive list of skills for young tots to acquire in nursery school in Singapore (two to three years old for N1 and three to four years old for N2), but keep in mind that kids develop at different rates.
Learning abilities go hand-in-hand with learning attitude and engagement. Does your child talk about school, friends, and teachers with excitement? Does he or she observe objects and the world around them with curiosity? Does your kid appear interested in trying new experiences, even if he or she is a bit hesitant? Is your tot keen to complete tasks independently?
Other than looking out for learning milestones and attitude, take note of the learning environment too. Opt for a nursery school in Singapore with an environment that cultivates learning through exploration, sensory and tangible stimulations, with a curriculum that is play-based and backed by research.
After all, nursery in Singapore lays the foundation for later schooling.