This morning I got my loose parts fix at Playeum‘s booth at the Early Childhood Development Agency’s Learning Pod space in the The Future of Us exhibition. The Future of Us exhibition is all about envisioning what daily life might be like here in Singapore in the years to come.
I’m not sure about classrooms of the future. I suppose it’s fun to imagine how life might be different, and how the ways we educate our children might change. I’m still on the fence when it comes to a robot being a teaching assistant.
But of course one thing I am sure of – classrooms of both today AND tomorrow should involve lots of loose parts! The possibilities are endless when toys or resources don’t dictate how something should be played with, or the learning objective to be achieved. And it seems to me, that the The Future of Us exhibition was mostly about these possibilities, and ways of being.
Which is why Playeum’s role in this exhibition was so important. Their section invited children to make a vehicle out of recycled materials. So many loose parts!
And you know what I witnessed? Children independently working towards their own goal – most of them set straight to gathering what materials they wanted to use and then focused on their creations for a good half an hour. So focused! So purposeful! So capable!
The children who attended today’s exhibition were just as keen to sit down with tape and empty egg cartons as they were to watch the robot dance. (Though personally, I think there were some more interested in making their vehicle move). The exploration that Playeum offered children was so rich – in creativity, in fine motor development, in problem solving, in opportunities to self-regulate their attention to a goal and to self-direct their play. Surely we want this for our children right now, not just in the future?
If you are in Singapore, the ECDA’s Learning Pod is free, and on until Weds 2nd March. Visit from 9:30am – 5pm, and park at the SG50 carpark. Go visit the Playeum folk!