Some 250 children from 13 Skool4Kidz childcare centres participated in the first Hour of Code1 Preschoolers Meet in Singapore. The month-long Curriculum series started in November 2017 in partnership with Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA).
Deploying IMDA’s award-winning Playmaker series2 of technology-enabled toys, Skool4Kidz scheduled fun-filled coding activities into the children’s lesson plans and home-based learning experiences involving their parents. These are some of the efforts to develop their programming skills in computational thinking and encourage active problem solving capabilities.
The tech toys featured in the Hour of Code activities were incorporated into Skool4Kidz STEAM (for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) pedagogy. The basic programming activities were designed specially to help the children learn simple coding and to inspire STEAM through well-loved preschool stories.
Mr Desmond Lee, Minister for Social and Family Development and Second Minister for National Development, officiated the Hour of Code Finale on 8 December 2017 at the Skool4Kidz Campus @ Yishun at 61 Yishun Avenue 11.
During his visit, Mr Lee interacted with the children in the Yishun cluster as they carried out problem solving activities using programmable tech toys to address challenges given to them by their teachers. He observed how the children experimented with basic programming, such as rearranging and estimating the segments of Code-a-pillar, Bee-Bot and KIBO robots to move sequentially.
In his Facebook page post after the event, Minister Lee said he was “glad to see how the teachers enriched the play by guiding them through the logical thinking and problem solving process, translating their ideas into action”.
“For these children, an early (coding) exposure through meaningful play is a stepping stone for them towards being future-ready Singaporeans,” he added.
1 The Hour of Code is a global movement encouraging 1 hour of computer science learning.
2 IMDA PlayMaker won Gold at the ASEAN ICT Award 2017 (Public Sector category).