In this mini-series, we will be exploring how you can help your child maximise their hours after school.
With the rise of pressure on parents over their child’s exams, it makes sense to take a step back from all the exam blues; and reflect on what we can do as parents to reduce the pressure on their children and help put a smile back on their faces.
Over at PlayFACTO School, we believe that there are 4 KEY ingredients that make an effective learning environment for your child.
- The Presence Of A Facilitator
- The Presence Of Community
- The Presence Of Structure
- The Presence Of Space
The Presence of A Community
When I host parents at our Serangoon North Campus, one key question I ask all parents is, “What is the main reason why you’d choose to place your child in a student care?”
Their answers are diverse but the underlying rationale is to provide care for their primary children while they are busy at work or running their businesses.
When they arrive at our centre and observe how our teachers, students and HQ staff interact – there is an invisible thread that binds us together as a family.
This warmth is the community that is made present at every PlayFACTO School Student Care.
This is our PlayFACTO Touch.
What is a Community?
A community is “a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common.”
For us at PlayFACTO School, it refers to a community consisting of parents, teachers and students in an after-school care environment.
Why Is There A Need For This Community?
In short, it takes an entire village to raise a child.
Having taught in schools as well as at our student care centres, I can relate to parents that caring for children today is no mean feat.
With the ready presence of YouTube, Social Media and Television, our children today are far more savvy and exposed.
1. Bullying is on the rise
In an article published by AsiaOne in 2013, cyberbullying is on the rise and having a community to support children when they are going through such issues is vital and necessary.
Having a community of adults to pick up signs of bullying is a boon to busy parents.
Over at our centres, our dedicated teachers and staff are able to provide a safe and assuring environment for the children.
As a Singapore’s first positive education student care, we have character development enrichment lessons set in place to guide children on how best to manage their emotions and expressing their concerns to adults earlier.
2. Academic Pressure
An article by The Straits Times in 2017 highlighted that the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) confirmed that Singapore students were found to have higher levels of anxiety about their tests and grades as compared to their international peers.
Having tutors are useful, however, a tutor’s objective is to support a child academic needs. With time not on their side, providing emotional support is often not possible;
Therefore having a community to be there to help a child through these trying years will be helpful in softening the academic pressure on our students.
3. Media Influence
With the rise of violence and explicit content on YouTube and television, children these days are being exposed to such content at a young age.
This is a double-edged sword as these children are getting smarter – there is therefore a need for a moral compass or guide to ensure that these children learn to choose to walk down the better path.
According to an article from The Straits Times in 2018:
“From 2013 to 2016, IMH’s Child Guidance Clinics, which see patients aged six to 18 years old, saw an average of 190 new patients per year with depression.”
The rise of depression is real – having a community that supports a child’s emotional and mental state is essential.
This is the reason why, having a supportive community is important to help children to make sense through their primary school education.
How Does Community Maximises Time?
1. Community alleviates pressure
The pressure to perform creates a repetitive redundant practice that focuses on quantity rather than quality. In a community, children will feel less pressured by the outcome and are more focused on how they can improve by working on the process of learning. This makes learning fun and children are happier. The eventual result is an increase in productivity of their after school hours.
2. Community supports academic success
Children can work together to help one another academically, creating an upward spiral where everyone pushes everyone forward. In additional, there are well-trained teachers who provide a strong support to this community. With everyone helping one another, revision time is made effective.
3. Community champions collaboration
Together everybody achieves more. This is true even in a student care. When students work together on their revision, notes can be compiled together. Discussions can be carried out to work on new ideas together. Spelling can be done and everyone learns new words together. This form of collaboration creates a positive flow where everyone moves forward in their learning. The best part of it all is that it helps to maximise their revision time.
4. Community promotes healthy competition
In a community, children will compare and compete with their peers indefinitely. This is a healthy process that should be diverted rather than denied. Winning promotes confidence. Losing promotes continuous learning. Such attitudes when groomed within the space of a student care allows for a better motivated community of learners.
What Can Parents Do To Enjoy The Benefits Of A Community?
- Being a part of a local church, temple, community group allows for parents to pool resources to engage a good facilitator or tutor.
- Parents can also arrange for a group of students to hang out at their homes (if convenient) and share the costs of a facilitator or tutor.
- If you are in the Community Centre Management Committee, you can champion this as a community effort, providing pioneer generation leaders and a part-time or full-time tutor to support this cause.
- Parents who have offices with additional space can open up rooms in the day for this very purpose.
- Enrol your child in a student care that promotes the values of a community.
About PlayFACTO School
Singapore’s #1 Premium Student Care
At PlayFACTO School, our commitment to learning engagement extends beyond our research-based curriculum, intentionally designed learning spaces and best-in-class facilitators of knowledge.
Our unique PlayFACTO School experience is based on our philosophy “Engage, Play, Learn”. We believe in helping every child realize their full potential through meaningful engagement and providing a fun and holistic learning experience.
For more information about the above programme, feel free to contact us at 9773 4336.