From the looks of it, June Sun had it all: money, social status and a supportive family.
She had climbed to the top of the corporate ladder at a big multinational corporation (MNC), earning prestige and the approval of her immigrant parents – especially her father, who had worked two jobs when she was growing up. Her family migrated to Melbourne from China at a cost. Her parents made sacrifices, dreaming that June would have a bright future filled with success.
For a while, that was exactly what June aspired to and achieved, as the head of a department at the MNC firm – until she gave up her hard-earned corporate career to take on something totally new: She decided to start a MindChamps PreSchool centre.
Taking a leap of faith
Why did she do it – “throw away” her career, as her father puts it, when she could have continued along her successful corporate track and retired in 10 years?
With two kids of her own to provide for, what had compelled June to pour all her funds and energy into opening MindChamps @ Raffles Town Club?
From the corporate to the education world
A career is one thing – a vocation is another.
“My main motivation to start MindChamps @ Raffles Town Club was to move towards my passion for children, setting the right foundation for them, and flourishing them to reach their potential. This is something I believe in. This is my vocation,” June said.
Her love for children – and their love for her – is evident in the way she interacts with the Champs every day at MindChamps @ Raffles Town Club.
“My favourite part of my job is that all the children love to give me hugs daily. They hang onto my legs like koala bears – which I find incredibly adorable and loving,” June said.
The dynamic curriculum at MindChamps @ Raffles Town Club
Asian education is often called out for prioritising academic skills over extracurricular activities, IQ over EQ.
Raised in an Asian family in Australia, June sharpened her academic rigour and discipline at home, while her western schooling built up her imagination and fearlessness through hands-on learning, free play, music and sports. In a sense, she was exposed to the best of both worlds – and she recognised that MindChamps offered the same.
“I believe MindChamps has taken the best of both worlds of education – the East and the West – and moulded them into something spectacular,” June said.
Each child benefits from the curriculum’s academic focus, as well as the creativity and cultural awareness learnt through theatrical class, storytelling, gourmet cooking, the NeuroMooves™ programme, arts and craft and music workshops. Both left and right brain developments are strengthened.
How MindChamps @ Raffles Town Club encourages the Champion Mindset
MindChamps’ 100% Respect and Zero Fear effectively empowers each student to embrace their strengths and overcome adversity.
“Children show vulnerability every day, whether it’s through bad moods, the fear of meeting new friends, or the initial ‘I don’t want’ stage especially between the ages of 2 to 4, when they face something unknown,” June said. “At MindChamps, we guide them and encourage them to try – for example, by asking, ‘How can I help you to do this and make this more fun for you?’
“Gone are the days of the ‘must-dos,’” she continued. “The more you force it down someone, the more reluctant they are. At MindChamps, we encourage Champs to have a willing and loving nature,” June said.
One character-building activity that June recommends, which she practices with her own kids, is the “Kindness Bucket,” inspired by the book, Have You Filled Your Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud. For motivation, simply use different coloured pencils to fill up the bucket when you have been kind toward someone.
Celebrating the unique personalities of all children
The Champion Mindset celebrates each individual’s uniqueness. Yet have you noticed that often, kids are made to feel that being “shy” is something that needs to be fixed?
“As a society, we are perceived to be good or mediocre parents by the way our children behave, act and how sociable they are,” June said.
As the mum of an introverted daughter, June feels that it is okay if her child is happy observing a new class first or learning from the teacher before participating. Sure, parents may be afraid of their kids missing out on the fun, but the kids themselves may not feel that way.
June quoted Susan Cain’s bestselling book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking: “Parents shouldn’t overprotect quiet children, but they should understand these kids have a longer runway before they are comfortable enough to take off and fly.”
“Instead of attempting to correct a child’s shyness, we should reinforce to them that it is okay if they are not the same as everyone else,” June said, adding, “Famous introverts include Albert Einstein, J.K. Rowling and Dr Seuss. So don’t ever believe that we need our children to conform to a set norm to fit in, as each child is beautiful and brilliantly made in their own way.”
The belief that every child should be embraced for his or her uniqueness rings true for all personalities, be it introverted or extroverted, expressive or reserved, observant or uninhibited, and so on. One thing is for sure: at MindChamps @ Raffles Town Club, June and all the educators will be there to help all children flourish, and realise their full potential and dreams.