No, I’m not moonlighting as a ‘kacang puteh’ seller. That’s me at our inaugural Homeschool Festival last Saturday.
And in case you were wondering about Voyage of Dreams this year, I’m taking a break from organizing it in favour of establishing more intimate community playspaces. My community intiative, Organic Play Parties, is coming back for the 3rd instalment by popular demand. Registrations have opened so do book your spots for it soon.
Meanwhile, I’ve been laying a little quieter than usual because I’m also busy making preparations to homeschool my firstborn next year. Homeschool? Yeps! That’s right.
So before you shoot me the questions of ‘Why’ and ‘How’ and whatever-else-not, let me take this opportunity to introduce you to my wonderful Homeschool Singapore community. It is founded by a friend – the talented singer-songwriter-parent Dawn Fung.
Our first ever Homeschool Festival was held last Saturday at Bishan Park. There were more than 40 families present. (Thereabouts … no one was really taking attendance. So yes, we homeschoolers are rather chillaxed about numbers like this. Who can come, come. Who cannot.. it’s okay. There’s always another social coming along. Whoever said we homeschoolers had socialization difficulties? )
Though we are just a bunch of homeschoolers, we were extremely blessed by the generosity of individual and corporate sponsors. We were spoiled silly with goodie bags (stuffed full with $300 worth of things!), a veritable feast of hearty homecooking and homebakes, a giveaway corner for families to pass along blessings.
Being the cardboard queen, I was just thrilled that 3M offered to sponsor us lovely tapes from their latest Washi & Expressions range. (With great thanks to my inspiring and resourceful friend, Justina of Mum in the Making. Do hop over there after you finish here to read more about our HS Festival.)
In my preferred organic play style, I set up the craft corner at the Homeschool Festival with minimal fuss and maximum access to resources.
Because we were outdoors, I didn’t want too much fuss with drippy glue so I did some pre-event prep of sticking googly eyes on tongue depressors and egg cartons (leftovers from VOD 2013). A whole boxful of scissors (NOT the child-friendly but totally real types) was left on the mat for any child who needed them.
But I must say, it was really the 3M tapes with all their glorious colours and prints that inspired all the creativity and an instant pop to all the creations.
My two boys love snipping and making (which explains why my home is not a home, but actually a full-scale studio where you can find odds and ends from ‘projects’ in every corner). Lee, almost 6, invented this flying owl out of loo rolls which he taught to his little brother. I brought their little toys along just for my boys to test out their flight-worthiness. To my delight (and surprise), Lee’s creation captured the interest of many children at the station especially the boys.
Here’s a quick snapshot of all the crafty action that went on.
What is also fabulous about the 3M tapes is how easy it is for even young children to work with them.
With some help. Or without.
Did I mention too that the act of unwinding-and-unwinding-and-unwinding those tapes to stick-and-stick-and-stick on stuff-upon-stuff-upon-stuff works some sort of quiet spell onto even the most active of children?
It’s just marvelous to watch how the children think and dream with their hands.
Whether it is a sculpture they want to make…
Or just making something new to share with their friends – a story perhaps?
Or a new fantastical flying invention they’re making…
What’s important is the children are learning to create, and learning how to use what they have to have fun.
And what’s even more important is that we adults can get time to dream up some dreams of our own.
Photography Credits & Copyright:
Many thanks to these wonderful Homeschooling Friends for the photos above – Stanley Eo, Kevin Yan and Justina Tey.