After two weeks of the Julia Gabriel June holiday programme, Richard and I sat down and had a short review. Mainly we wanted to see whether Ryan benefited from the programme or not.

Well, we think that Ryan did very well. He understood what was going on and what was expected of him. He paid attention and was interested in the activities, some activities more than others. He didn't give the teachers or the other babies a hard time. He understood when he had to sit down and be still and quiet and when he could let loose and be silly.

The programme also provided him many learning opportunities and we could see that Ryan was very keen to learn. As an illustration, here are two videos of Ryan at water play, where we can see him investigating everything, doing little experiments and really learning so much.

In the first video, you can see how Ryan experiments with different conditions in the water trough. First, he has a large container which he dips into and lifts out of the water. He can see the water dripping off the container but it is only a small amount. This is unsatisfying and he tries to find out how he can get more water to flow out. So he experiments. First he tries to stuff the container deeper into the water to pick up more water. When that doesn't really work, he puts his hand into the water and splashes it about, hoping to increase the water level. That doesn't seem to work either, so he walks over to the other side of the trough where there is more space and his container can go in deeper and pick up more water. It seems to work a little better. He notices Cayden's daddy using a watering can which seems to do a much better job and so he realises that using a different container might do the trick. So he changes containers and gets a better result. Later (not shown in the video), he realises that the way he holds the container and dips it into the water also makes a difference.

In the second video, Ryan has gotten hold of a similar watering can which he saw Cayden's daddy using earlier. He now wants to investigate the other water troughs. He gets up from the first water trough and walks over to the green water trough where he puts his hand in to verify that there is water inside. He then squats down by the side of the water trough and learns that he can actually see through the semi-transparent side of the trough. He then goes to investigate the blue tub which is empty. After considering his options carefully, he decides that the first water trough is the best option and so he goes back there. By this time, he has learned which container does the best job of gathering and distributing water, and so he picks the perfect container for the job. He even holds the container correctly as he dips it into and lifts it out of the water.

Ryan did all this on his own, without any help from Richard, me or the teachers. In fact, I wasn't even present at this session. Richard showed me the videos afterwards and we were pretty amazed to witness this learning process. I'm not saying that Ryan is unique in this sense. I'm sure this is pretty normal and most babies do the same thing. I'm only saying that it's pretty amazing to witness a baby, any baby, going through this learning process.

There have been other times during the programme that we witnessed Ryan actively learning. Unfortunately, we only have a few videos and pictures of Ryan in the programme, because when we're in the classroom, Ryan is sitting in front of us on the floor, so we only see the back of his head.

Well, our conclusion is that Ryan seems to have benefited from the programme and so we're very happy that we stuck it out. It was also a timely reminder to Richard and me that our little one is eager to learn and we, as parents, need to keep providing him with opportunities to learn. Richard and I are well aware of this but lately we've been a little slack as we've been occupied with shifting houses in Malaysia, settling the purchase of our penthouse in Singapore and of course, office work. It's time for us to get back on the horse!


Kenny Leow said...


Quite true. I also been slack with Matt's GD program. Now started to gear up again doing his Maths stuffs. Haiz...

Didn't realize we are in the same boat.

BTW, great to know that Ryan had enjoyed the program. I guess Matt enjoyed the last day most.


Pinkie Pirate said...

Kenny, come and visit us often when we shift to the east! We can take Matt to the beach.

Kenny Leow said...

definitely... We will visit you more often when you guys move to the East. Hopefully both boys can go into the sea and play together.

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