What We Need To Know About Math Enrichment

As early as nursery, children already learn math. They learn how to count and they learn about the basic operations as well. However, as a child advances his/her grade level, the level of math also advances. Some children might have difficulties with understanding several formulas or concepts that is why some of them are taking extra classes which could help them comprehend. Enrichment classes for toddlers Singapore are very common. These classes help to bridge the gap between the children’s differing learning abilities.

Wai Fi Yeng

Conceptions of Mathematics Enrichment

Despite the increasing amount of activity taking place under its label, mathematics enrichment is under-theorised and currently lacks a coherent framework of organising ideas. The term enrichment itself is often used commonsensically, its meaning taken as shared (Feng, 2005). This paper reports on a project which is developing a framework for understanding mathematics enrichment in the UK. Beginning with a summary of the conflicting views of mathematics enrichment found in the educational literature, this paper then presents a four-strand model for organising enrichment ideas. By way of illustration, the model is then applied to map a selection of mathematics enrichment provisions currently available in the UK. This paper ends by posing questions regarding the future of enrichment and its relationship with formal education in the light of current educational concerns and anticipated curriculum development in the UK.

Conflicting Views of Mathematics Enrichment

Conceptions of mathematics enrichment have been influenced by many of the wider debates in education ever since enrichment first began to receive attention some eighty years ago. Such debates include ones which pertain to the relative merits of special versus inclusive education, the intrinsic value of mathematics versus its utility in the modern society, as well as discussions about who should have access to what kind of mathematics education and why. Read more here.

So now we have a better understanding of why enrichment is needed, who should be enriched, where and when should enrichment take place, and if all learning can be enriched. Enrichment, though effective, should not be overdone, else it might backfire. On a different note, let us now see how M.A.T.H. workshop differs with math instruction. These two may sound like they do the same thing but let us see how they differ from each other. Core Inspiration by Laura Santos will tell us more about this.

Differentiate Math Instruction With M.A.T.H. Workshop

Differentiating instruction is one of the greatest challenges for self-contained classroom teachers. Gone are the days of whole group lessons, and assigning the same activities to the entire class. We now teach in a student-centered environment where personalized learning is key.

Fortunately, our students are more engaged and successful than with the former instructional model. Unfortunately, teachers often feel swamped by the prep, coordination, and organization required to maintain quality differentiation. The key to keeping overwhelm at bay is the use of consistent routines and frameworks like math workshop, daily 5, reader’s workshop, and writer’s workshop throughout the day.

What Is M.A.T.H. Workshop?

M.A.T.H. workshop is a framework that allows students to learn new math content each day, practice math strategies in a variety of ways, and reflect on learning through verbal or written sharing. The predictable structure of math workshop makes it easier for students to participate in differentiated activities. Read more here.

            M.A.T.H. workshop lets students learn new math concepts each day, practice math strategies in different ways, and reflect on learning through verbal or written sharing. So basically, there is a warm-up, mini lessons, a short practice, and then sharing. This routine is effective in ensuring that children understand the concepts that are taught.

Now, let us read about an article by Raffaella Nathan Charles which is about Singapore winning at the International Mathematics and Science Olympiad.

Team Singapore wins big at International Mathematics and Science Olympiad held here

SINGAPORE – Move over Joseph Schooling, there are two new sheriffs in town.

St. Hilda’s Primary School’s Drew Michael Terren Ramirez, 11, bagged a gold medal and was Best Overall in Mathematics at the five-day International Mathematics and Science Olympiad (IMSO). Team Singapore’s Lim Yu Tong was Best Overall in Science, winning a gold medal as well.

The competition, held in Singapore for the first time from Nov 20 to 24, saw Team Singapore enter its biggest team yet with 24 students, and winning one bronze, seven silver and 16 gold medals in total.

Sure, Drew and Yu Tong are pint-sized but the competition was no less intense with 309 of the brightest 10 to 12 year olds from 21 countries and regions battling it out to demonstrate their knowledge of mathematics and scientific concepts.

The first two days of the annual competition, now into its 14th iteration, saw participants diving into rigorous practice papers in Suntec City. Read more here.

Garnering one bronze, seven silver and 16 gold medals is already a very impressing achievement. Out of 309 students, they were able to beat them take home those medals. It just proves that Singapore has a very special way of teaching science and math which makes their students very good at it. Many people say that math is a very complicated subject but just look at these students, they were able to do it. We just have to identify the right way of learning math and then maybe, we could be just like these students, or at least we would be able to understand several math topics we don’t get before.

Top Advantages of Learning Mandarin

China is a nation with the highest population in the world. So, there are a large number of people who converse in this language. It has also led to the growth of various opportunities in the recent years. Following are some of the most important advantages of learning Mandarin.

Chinese is not as difficult a language as many people would like to believe

A common reaction that many people have when they speak about the Chinese language is that is it quite tough to learn. But, the good news is that this is absolutely incorrect. While there are languages that are easier to pick up as compared to Chinese, be assured that it is not the toughest language to learn as some people would tell you

For instance, this language does not have any gender or case. Plus, the grammar is quite simple. Thus, as far as the grammar complexity is concerned, Chinese as an extremely easy language to learn It does not have tough constructs such as genders and cases unlike many European languages. The language also uses tenses in a simplistic manner. Unlike many other languages of East Asian countries like Japanese and Korea, it is devoid of horrific grammar. Thus, when people learning other languages concentrate on genders and verb conjugation, you will soon realize that learners of the Chinese language can outpace people learning other languages very quickly.

Learning with the aid of computers has made picking up the language quite easy and simple

It was quite a tedious process to learn Chinese in the past. The reasons for that were endless lists of characters, poorly recorded learning tapes and big dictionaries for knowing Chinese in the professional field. But, fortunately for you, today the ways for learning Chinese are much more improved.

Computer-aided and digital techniques for learning have evolved in the last few years. Thus, today the learners of the language can take the help of excellent dictionary programs and great programs of character-learning programs like Anki and Memrise. Learning techniques aided by media are also highly useful for people to learn Chinese. Thus, all these user-friendly tools help in attaining the proficiency in Chinese easier and faster than before.

Handwritten characters have become less important due to digital communications

Chinese has also become a simpler language to learn due to the method in which character writing in Chinese is happening today. Thanks to the rapid advancements in technology, a host of popular methods for character input are being practiced in China now on computers and handheld devices. In fact, these methods are now the main way through which creation of Chinese texts is happening.

Knowledge of Chinese can open various opportunities for you

You should not simply learn Chinese since it is highly accessible and easy. There are many other benefits. In fact, today, Mandarin Chinese is perhaps the most suitable language to pick up if you are serious about getting a head start in your professional career.

The economy in China is booming

The prime attractiveness of the Chinese language is the country’s booming economy as well as its increasing scope as a global superpower. In the last three decades or so, China has arguably established itself as the biggest global economy from being simply a third world nation. The country has encouraged economic cooperation and foreign investment in the recent years. So, there is a big demand for all those people who can fill in the gap between the rest of the world and the growing China.

However, in order to ensure your young ones master Chinese, it is recommended that you put them in a mandarin class for children from a very young age.

Merits of Chinese Enrichment Classes

Mandarin Chinese is a widely spoken language since it is spoken in China, the most populous country of the world. Knowledge of this language can open up an ocean of opportunities today. So, there is little wonder that many people are taking interest in learning the language.

It is very important for your kids to get the exposure of enrichment programs right from the time they are toddlers. It is especially true for programs that are designed to conduct Mandarin class for children . These programs can offer long-term benefits for the grooming of your children. If you get your kid admitted in an enrichment course, which is a well-structured one and has a great curriculum, you can soon notice that their abilities and skills are enriched much beyond your expectations and imaginations. However, you should also note in this context that there is a host of enrichment programs that are available in the market for your children. So, selecting something that is in the best interest of your kid is quite crucial.

Helps in improving your child’s drama and speech skills

There are some enrichment programs that can benefit your kid in areas like drama and speech. Though there are various kinds of enrichment programs in the market today, these are some of the most utilized subjects in the lives of your children. The merits of a good enrichment program can have a positive impact on your child as they become adults.

Improves your kid’s ability to learn

In general, every enrichment program has a primary focus. The key focus is to enhance the ability of your kid to learn. If you want your kid to pick up some of the crucial facts related to social situations, they should be able to comprehend as well as understand proper speech. When you enroll your young child in a proper enrichment program, they can learn ways of initiating greetings; carry on conversations in a completely natural style. If your children master the art of proper speech, it becomes easier for them to respond to various kinds of scenarios and react appropriately to negative criticisms directed towards them. Your child must be equipped with pragmatic skills like idioms, descriptions, and sarcasm. When you expose your little one to well-structured enrichment programs, it becomes easier to address all these areas properly all through their life.

Creativity and improving imagination

Creativity, as well as imagination, is vital for kids. An enrichment program that helps kids to polish these skills will have a big impact in their entire lives. Many adults will realize that children possess a natural talent to be highly expressive with others and also with their own selves. When you do not provide them a chance to channelize their creativity, such natural skill may disappear as they grow up.

Admitting your young kid to a proper enrichment program, which promotes skills related to drama, can introduce them to a beautiful universe of emotional recognition, self-control, plays, story dramas and the potential to explore an array of talents that your young kid may not be aware they have in them.

While there are so many enrichment programs available to you, you should get your young kids engaged in something, which will benefit their abilities and skills that will be ingrained in them although their lives. You need to understand that every enrichment program does not offer this kind of an experience.

In fact, it is up to you as a parent to select a program that is in the best interest of your child. Skills in drama and speech are extremely critical since they enable your kid to express, articulate and communicate themselves in a positive and natural manner. Hence, you need to do a bit of homework before taking the final call on where you should get your child enrolled.

Why children will learn Chinese better when they are very young?




It is ironical that the same parents who want their children to learn Chinese hesitate to enroll them in a Chinese kindergarten in Singapore when they are quite young . Their argument is that children of that tender age should not be made to struggle for learning that language. They also fear that if such pressure is put on the minds of young kids, they will start hating the process of getting the education they need or going to school. But according to the unanimous opinion of experts, these fears are baseless. These experts firmly say that young children will not at all feel the pressure of learning. Not only that, it is their tender age that helps them learn Chinese better than the others who try to learn the language at a later stage. Let us find out the reasons behind their assertions.

Experts point out at the findings of the various researchers that have been carried out on brain science that reveal that it is the human mind and the human memory that influence how we all behave or learn. Almost all our behaviors do not start at the rational level but they start at the emotional level. At the same time, researchers admit that they still have trouble in comprehending that particular part of the human brain that inspires us to behave the way we behave.

In fact, our body and whatever it does are slaves to our mind. This includes the beating of our heart, circulation of blood, and even pumping of our endocrine system. But at the same time, the mind does not sit idle. It keeps sorting out, storing and reacting to the sensory inputs or data it receives. In other words, it always involves itself in a vast number of memory-processing activities. That is why we are able to identify colors, recollect memories, etc.

Researchers have found that all the sensory inputs pass through “amygdala,” a region of the human brain that helps in translating information in such a manner that they can be used for storage, for influencing our thought processes or for deciding our future behaviors.

If the sensory inputs are strong, the mind finds it easy to store them at the conscious level. When the inputs form memories, a physical alteration takes place in the patterns of brain cells and neurons. In fact, how a brain tissue physically changes its patterns can be observed through a high-quality electron microscope.

The more we exercise our neurons, the more will be the inter-connectivity between the brain cells. The dendrite network will also become more complex. When the pattern becomes more and more complex, more synapses will be taking place along the brain pathways. Experts have christened the phenomenon of such physical changes along the brain pathways as “plasticity” of the brain.

Researchers are amazed to find that if rich and vivid environments are made available, it will create more physical changes or more plasticity than when dull environments prevail. Researchers have also found that since young kids have more active brains that are capable of absorbing strong sensory inputs, the physical changes that happen along their brain pathways will also be much more than what it is in grown-up people. In fact, teaching languages including Chinese is a great way to provide the rich and vivid environments to the brains of young kids. So, they are certain to learn the language better than how they learn it at a later stage.

Teachers will do well if they teach Chinese to young kids using innovative ways. They should ensure that the teaching process involves providing rich and vivid environments to the children. This will help in making the sensory inputs that enter the brain of the kids stronger. If this strategy is adopted, teachers will be able to make the children learn Chinese more effectively and faster.

Printable Activities For Toddlers

There are lots of different activities that are appropriate for toddlers. The best thing about toddlers is that they are very easy to engage and entertain. While some of the activities could be physical, a few involve printable artwork. Most of these printable activities for toddlers test their artistic skills and orientation. Printable activities also teach children concentration, dexterity and improve their cognitive development. Here are some of the printable activities that are appropriate for toddlers.

  1. Colouring Craft. This is the most common form of printable activity. The best part about colouring craft is that it can represent any theme or goal that you are seeking. It’s also possible to have it designed to match the age-appropriate cognitive challenge for the kids. Colouring craft is the best form of printable challenge that can be matched for any age from 2-10. Colour matching is such a stimulating assignment for most kids.
  2. Drawing. This is the second form of printable art. Toddlers can be given an assignment to draw particular object or time. They can also be challenged to name individual items that have been drawn on a sheet of paper. Just like any other printable, they are easy to manage and administer to toddlers. The best part about it is that there are lots of sites online with a variety of printables for kids of all ages.

III. Joining The Dots. Joining numbered dots is easier than drawing an item or image. It works particularly well for the younger children who haven’t developed their drawing skills yet. Joining the dots can involve even higher-level complex images that are above a kid’s intelligence or understanding. Sometimes the dots can be numbered to make it easy for the toddlers. The dots can also be left blank, and the kid has to figure out which dots to join before the image starts making sense.

III. Filling Blank Spaces. Words can be printed on paper with certain letters missing. The kids are then supposed to figure out which letters have been omitted and fill them up. This is often more enjoyable when the cluster of words involved are pretty similar. For example, the group of words could be names of domestic animals, house items, stationery or parts of an object.

  1. Grouping Items. Grouping of items is such an exciting and engaging form of activity for toddlers. Lots of things can be drawn on a piece of paper, and the kids are then asked to list them in order of relations. The clusters could be wild animals or objects whose initial letter is the same. It could also involve items that sound similar in their pronunciation. The most important thing to note is to always to make sure that the particular printable craft matches the level of cognitive development for the kids involved.

Child Care Options And Economic Impact

As child care desires for families are as different as the families themselves, parents require a wide variety of child care options. The “right” child care option for your family would actually depend on your work demands, the ages of your children and your own special preferences about what is the most excellent care situation for every child. You would need to consider when you want care, the program’s distance to your home or work, the qualifications of the staff and prominently, the exclusive needs of your child.

Child Care Options

  • In-home care

In-home care is when a child care provider comes to the family’s house to offer services. This offers flexibility to the parents and gives personal concentration for the child. Please note that under most situations, a child care provider in this situation is considered an employee and employment and tax laws apply.

  • Pre-school Programs

Many public schools provide plans for four to five year old kids in playgroup Singapore. Programs are only available in the day and works on a school calendar. These plans are synchronized by the State Department of Education.

  • Nursery Schools

Nursery schools are group plans, which are not in someone’s house and operate for less than four hours per day. Many of these plans work on a school calendar and frequently offer both a part time and part week choice to families. These plans are not necessarily synchronized. However, many plans willingly follow the State Education Department Guidelines or become synchronized as a child care center.

  • Legally exempt Providers

It is other wise know as the “informal provider” care, these child care providers are normally friends, relatives or any other neighbors who watch one or two children, including their own. These child care providers are not necessary to be regulated.

  • Economic Impact

Concentrating on both conventional child care services, as well as plans more related with early education, the report by Economic Analysis of the Early Care and Education Sector documents the size, range, and economic breath child care. This citation stated that the early child care and education industry produce over 4.6 billion dollars annually. The sector employs almost 121,000 workers in more than 21,000 child care industries, serves more than 621,000 children and assists more than 751,000 parents entering and remaining in the workforce. It is obviously an important part of the New York Child Care State’s small business base, which deserves a stronger economic-development focus. Investment within this sector would not only advantage the formation of the New York Child Care future workforce, but would promote local economic development.

Tips for parents who have genius or gifted toddlers

There are situations where you might have noticed that your child has the ability to learn faster than others who are in his age group. For instance, you might have noticed that he started to walk or talk sooner than his or her other siblings, as well as other kids in the surroundings. You might have also noticed that he was able to recognize and learn about certain things faster as a toddler. Having this type of gifts is a privilege and you have the opportunity to help them maintain these characteristics. Here are some tips you can follow to maintain, encourage and enhance the ability of your kids if you have genius or gifted toddlers.


The first step to maintaining the genius abilities of your kids is by recognizing it. In most cases, there is always something extraordinary about a kid and parents must put in place some efforts to recognize such things. There must always be one or more things that a child is able to do that others are not able to do, at the same age.

For parents who are too busy and cannot find out these things, they could approach the teacher of the child as most teachers are always able to notice such abilities, since the child spends considerable time with them on a daily basis. Furthermore, the teachers also give tests and assess the children.

There are also instances where such abilities could come out and look negative, such as a child that is always troublesome and disrupts the class. This could mean a lot of energy, which, if carefully harvested and channelled towards positive things, could bring out a lot of great reward.


When parents notice these traits in their toddlers, they should try to encourage the child in those areas. For instance, if you find out that your toddler seems to have a genius ability with numbers, you could get them mathematical puzzles for kids and other fun games that have to do with numbers. This will go a long a way in enhancing their genius ability. Furthermore, if you notice that your child has a lot of energy and is using it to cause a lot of trouble, you could try to enrol them in an enrichment class for toddlers where they would be taught sports and gymnastics. Your child could be trained to become a world class runner, footballer or table tennis player in the future.

As you encourage the child to continue to practice and display this ability, it is also vital that you nurture the ability. This could be through personally organizing an enrichment class for toddlers where you teach the toddler more about his ability. If you do not have the time or ability to do this, teachers who are good in this area could be employed to train the kids. This would help your toddler become an expert in this area before they are through with school and they could decide to make a career with the ability.

Why Early Education Is Significant To A Childs Growth

Sending a child to school is not only a responsibility but a necessity so that when they grow into adults they become productive and efficient. There are many stereotypes that associate a graduate of education as someone who only cares about work and nothing else. But education is not like that at all because it opens possibilities where there are none.

And aside from that children have a better chance of pursuing their dreams because they are equipped with the right tools and knowledge. In choosing the best playgroup in Singapore can be daunting to shift through everything. It is reasonable that parents worry what kind of school to send their children to.

Simply to choose one and hope that their child will enjoy their time in that institution and fit in. However sending a child to school is not an easy task aside from being financially taxing. A school must be prestigious, established, and well known for future companies and businesses to take the individual seriously.

Therefore choosing the right school means signing your children into a place where their future will be molded. Hence it is important parents consider the kind of school they will send the child to. Schools vary but have the same curriculum that is mandated by the governing bodies.

However there are institutions that have begun to develop their curriculum into a holistic approach to provide children the right education. Curriculum’s must supplement a child with the right skills. And teaching to mold them into a person that is not only ready to take on the world.

But have transferable skills that can be used anywhere. Furthermore education is not a one size fits all program. Depending on the childs level of interest and willingness to learn sometimes it will take years for a child to improve their studies. However schools have assure parents that guiding each child in a way that they are able to catch up.

And also find out what their interest in will help them improve and reach goals that is relevant to a career they want to excel in. Hence parents should consider the kind of curriculum and staff that is surrounding the child at a school. Parents must make an effort to visit the school they are interested in. In that way they will be able to see how it is runned by the principal. And how the teachers interact with children and each other.

There are other things that parents should look out for such as the amenities and facilities in the school. These are necessary so that children will have an easier time at school, make new friends, and learn whatever there is to learn in the chosen institution. Hence parents must devote time in understanding the best school for their kids.

The What, the Why and the How of Planning Social Interaction for Kids

Social interactions are at the heart of healthy, all-round development of children. They play a vital role in helping the kids form an identity, a sense of “self”, in terms of the expectations others have of them. Social interactions are also the breeding grounds for communication and social skills, as well as motor and cognitive skills.

* What does social interaction mean for young children

For the first couple of years, parents and the immediate family are the only people with whom a child interacts. This is both desirable and beneficial. However, after a certain age parents should introduce other people, ideally kids of the same age, to their children. The aim is to lay the groundwork for the child to start recognizing the desires and feelings of other children, to see things from the perspective of other children, and to learn to compromise. In the lack of appropriate social interactions, toddlers often grow to become selfish, self-centered, and less equipped to function in social settings.

After crossing the two-year landmark, children start benefiting from social interactions. The good news is, around this time, simple group activities such as participating in children’s playgroups is all the social interaction they need. As they grow older and start school, most become able enough to pick their own playmates and conduct their own social interactions.

* Why it is important for parents to facilitate social interactions

Research confirms that kids who develop social skills early in childhood grow to have higher confidence, stronger self-esteem, and greater willingness to participate in things happening around. They wade through their pre-teen and teen years with relative ease (because of their ability to make friends and to “be accepted” easily), and higher academic success. As young adults and later, fully-functioning adults with their own families, these kids are more healthy (yes social interactions can actively boost physical health in adults and seniors!), happy, and fulfilled.

Even if you do not want to think so far into the future, you will be able to find several compelling reasons to promote social interactions between your child and other children of the same age. For instance, early development of social skills prepares your child to understand the need and master the art of sharing, negotiating, cooperating, helping, finding help and so on. This will be beneficial both at home (with siblings) and at school (with school mates).

* How you can source fruitful social interactions for your children

One of the easiest things you can do to help your child interact more with other children of their age is to accompany them to play-dates and children’s playgroups. A children’s playgroup is better of the two options because it provides interactions with a larger number of children and parents. Be sure to choose such a children’s playgroup that allows an adult to be present, and you won’t have to worry about your child’s safety or security as well.
Children Playing In The Room
As your child interacts with peers, stands or sits together, laughs, plays, shares toys and has fun at the children’s playgroup, social bonds are built. They perceive the fun in playing alone versus playing together. They learn how to behave properly with others so that friendships are made and kept. They develop all social skills ranging from communicating clearly, effectively, and respectfully, or being considerate of others and cooperating to being assertive about their needs or desires when needed and controlling the same when not needed.

But that’s not all. Attending children’s playgroups also helps in the physical development of your child, by stimulating both the body and the mind. The benefits are just numerous!