Typically, children who attend nursery school are between three to four years old.
Children at this age see themselves as unique and individual and are learning to form a sense of self-identity. This is a stage where they experience significant physical growth and master new skills.
Skills and speech developmental milestones of nursery children
By the time children reach five years of age, a majority of them would have acquired the following skills from nursery school in Singapore and their daily routines.
Jumping over objects, climbing playground ladders, hopping and standing on one foot, pedalling and steering bicycles are some of the skills that young children master in the first four years of their lives.
Some of the cognitive milestones they will master include placing things in order of height or size, remembering and retelling their favourite stories, following simple multi-step instructions and concentrating on an activity for an extended period of time (10 to 15 minutes).
Singing silly songs, making up stories, holding conversations, changing speech patterns, even attempting to argue – all these are but a few of the language milestones children attending nursery school in Singapore are likely to achieve.
Social and Emotional Milestones
At this stage, nursery-level preschoolers are more aware of social norms and boundaries. As such, they will do or say things they are not allowed to purely to see what the reaction will be. They can also express complex emotions beyond happy, angry and sad.
Introducing your child to Speech and Drama
One of the key areas that children in nursery school will work on is that of their language and social-emotional development. While immersing them in quality books, initiating conversations and role-playing with them can help to develop these skills, signing them up for speech and drama enrichment classes could also be beneficial.
Speech and drama classes in Singapore, as well as kids theatre programmes such as MindChamps’ Actors Centre Kids, or Champion Mindset Theatre, emphasise on the vocal and presentation aspects while making learning fun. At drama classes for kids, children are encouraged to express themselves and discover their capabilities, as well as that of the people around them.
Speech and drama classes can be introduced to children as young as three years old, and it opens them up to a world of creativity.
What do children learn in speech and drama classes in Singapore?
Drama classes in Singapore teach more than only acting and dancing. In a speech and drama class for kids, poetry, classical text, games and even painting are activities that children get to dabble with.
The benefits of speech and drama classes in Singapore are that children will be able to vocalise their emotions, share thoughts and ideas and work harmoniously to accomplish tasks in a group. They develop an awareness of their newfound abilities and skills and build up their self-confidence.
Actors Centre Kids – powered by MindChamps
As kids of different age have different capabilities and developmental goals, the Actors Centre Kids programme categorises its classes according to age groups – from 3 to 9 years old. Its curriculum is based on 30 years of work by Dean Carey, a world-renowned acting teacher and director.
For example, children attending the N1 to N2 programme are exposed to theatrical activities, songs, storytelling and games. Actors Centre Kids has no examinable components and adopts a well-rounded and organic approach to performing that focuses on immersive skills building. Without the pressure of examinations, children can relax and truly learn through play.
Children enrolled in speech and drama classes have a safe environment to express themselves and take centre stage without fearing that they will be judged. Therefore, children who are quieter and introverted learn how to speak up in front of others and discover their hidden abilities. Although roles may be assigned by facilitators, each child has their own way of bringing their character to life in terms of their mannerisms and voices.
Rehearsals and practices are not a solo effort but a product of team collaboration where children brainstorm, discuss and negotiate with each other on improving their roles. This reiterates to the child the importance of teamwork and bonding.
As the Actors Centre Kids curriculum is focused on instilling creativity, confidence and collaboration, each activity involves physical awareness, vocal and sensory exploration, the art of quality questioning and answering, teamwork and creation.
Speech and drama classes: Life-long benefits for kids
Some of the goals of speech and drama classes for kids is to help the young ones to be more focused and engaged, as well as to encourage creativity and instil positive values such as confidence. Through the activities, children learn about how projects require the strengths and abilities of all members of a team to succeed.
Soft skills such as these will remain with the child for life as they progress in life. Interpersonal skills are beneficial for projects, presentations and group work in school and the workplace, while having empathy when communicating with others makes them pleasant and affable to peers and colleagues.
Written by Jamie Koh
Keen to enrol your child for MindChamps’ Actors Centre Kids programme?
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