Diverse and Well-Rounded Curriculum Taught in Singapore’s International Schools

When it comes to selecting an international school, it has become necessary for parents to consider more than the location of the school. Singapore has a significant number of international schools, providing a wide range of curricular. It can sometimes be overwhelming for parents to determine which system is best suited for their children, and why. Before deciding on the curriculum to use, it is important for parents to appreciate what the different international school curricular entails, and the impact it will have on students.

Montessori Curriculum

The Montessori curriculum is an education system that focuses on the independence of the children. Students who use this curriculum get involved in activities that enable them to learn through experience. Whatever their age, the students get to choose the activity they prefer. They are encouraged to explore, work independently, and to be creative as individuals, and as part of a group.

This system of education follows the innate interest of the children. This means that the framework keeps changing based on the changing need of the student population. The lessons this system is integrated with include language, maths, communication, science, dance, art, and music.

American Curriculum

An expatriate who has school-going children moving from the United States to Singapore will naturally consider the American curriculum over the others offered in other international schools because they seek continuity, especially for children transferring from schools in the US. Additionally, children to adjust better to a system they are familiar with.

The international schools using the American curriculum follow the framework given by the Overseas Schools Advisory Council and The United States State Department’s Office of Overseas Schools. This is done to ensure there is consistency in all schools using this curriculum anywhere in the world, from Kindergarten to Grade 12. Universities in Canada and the US recognize the American High School Diploma.

This system of education, specifically the high school level, allows students some freedom when it comes to choosing some of their courses based on their interests and strength. Classes below Grade 10 have a set course which students must follow but contribute significantly to their personal and educational growth.

Australian Curriculum

This curriculum, like all the other country-specific systems, is perfect for Australians relocating to Singapore, or those that expect to move to Australia in the future. This curriculum caters for children in the foundation years of their education up to Year 10. The disciplines this curriculum covers include English, Science, Mathematics, Humanities and Social Sciences, Arts, Technologies, Health and Physical Education, and Languages.

The Australian Curriculum aims to improve literacy, numeracy, communication, technology capability, creative and critical thinking, personal and social capability, intercultural and ethical understanding of the students.

French Curriculum

The French nationals predominantly use the French curriculum. This is primarily because of the language challenge. The French curriculum has two levels. Level one covers children from nursery to elementary school. Level two covers lower secondary and upper secondary.

Level 1 includes the acquisition of knowledge from the children, considering some of them are below six years of age. The students are also expected to get skills through lifelong learning leading to success later in life. The priority areas in this curriculum are French and mathematics. Other subjects include science and information technology, history and geography, sport, art, and foreign languages.

From the age of 11, students enter level 2.  This is Lower Secondary School (Le College) where students are expected to gain more knowledge and skills. Once the students get to Upper Secondary School (Le Lycee), they have the option to follow the general and technological path (voie generale et technologique) or the vocational path (voie professionnelle).

German Curriculum

The German curriculum, just like the French curriculum, is favored by German nationals moving to Singapore, or those intending to continue with the system when they relocate to German universities. Kindergarten is option for children between the age of two and six years. Grundschule is a compulsory level for students between six and ten years. From secondary school, the German education system gets a little complex.

There are five different schools that students can attend for their secondary education. The Gymnasium where Year 12/13 students seat the Abitur final exam, the Realschule, the Gesamtschule, the Hauptschule (vocational education), and Forderschulen/Sonderschulen. Students who intend to go to German Universities must sit the Abitur examination. If vocational or apprenticeship is an option a student is interested in, the Duale Ausbildung is an option such a student should explore.

Before enrolling a child to an education system, it is essential for parents to consider the content of the curriculum, and the plans they have for the advanced levels of education levels.

Key Points to Consider When Choosing Tuition Centers for International School Students in Singapore

The tuition culture in Singapore is sometimes considered quite intense. The tuition industry is worth more than $1billion annually. This culture is, however, not reserved for the students studying the Singapore system. Parents of students in international schools are part of the 80% who believe tuition will help improve their children’s grade.

However, it is important for parents of children studying the various curricular, besides the local one, to be cautious when choosing a tutor or tuition center. According to the statistics of children who seek tuition, based on the level of education, 57% of the students are in primary school, 21% are in secondary, 8% are in Junior college and IB, and 6% study the IGCSE system.

Get a tutor who understands the curriculum

The greatest ratio of tutors are teaching students who are in the local schools. Before signing your child up for tuition, it is important for you to find out if the tutor has any experience with the curriculum.

Using a tutor who has no idea about the teaching approaches of the system of education will only confuse your child further. There is a need for continuity in the method used to help the child understand his teachers and the lessons better.

Decide between tutor centers and one-on-one tutor

Some children respond well when studying with other students at the student center, while others need individual attention. It is essential for you to understand the needs of your child. If putting him in a class with other students will not be productive, it is best to look for a tutor who will give him the attention he needs to catch up with his classwork and overcome challenges he faces in school.

When choosing a tuition center, if possible, get one that only caters for students of the education system your child is in. Your child will likely meet other students facing the same challenges, and because they study the same thing, it will be easier for them to work as a team.

Discuss your expectations with the tutors

If you have chosen to take your child for extra lessons at a tuition center, it is vital for you to meet with the tutors to discuss what you expect of them. If, for example, you hope to see your child’s grades improve, but would also like to witness him gaining confidence in the subject, it is best to discuss all this with the tutor.

A good tutor will be able to incorporate your expectations using a teaching style that would be more involving. This way, your child will eventually step up and learn to communicate confidently because he understands the subject.

Seek a trial session

Before paying for a long-term session, especially if you are not sure about the capabilities of the tutors at the tuition center, request for a trial session. The trial period should be sufficient for you to gauge your child’s response, and for you to be able to determine if you made the right decision or if you should move on to another center.

The decision to enroll your child to a tuition center is heavily dependent on his potential, and the availability of excellent tuition services for the curriculum you are interested in. If you have no idea where to send your child, you could ask his school’s teachers for referrals.

How Private Schools provide your child with Better Options for Higher Education

The society today is very competitive. Everyday, we face competition at the workplace, competition to get into a good college, even competition to get into a good high school. Society’s pressure on kids to do well and has also added pressure on the parents to make sure that their children receive the best possible skills so that they will have a good head start in life. These necessary life skills are usually groomed in the growing up years of a child.

“Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow.” – Anthony J. D’Angelo

Thus, the school plays a very important role in how well they will do in their future. It can be a very tough process for parents when it comes to choosing the right school for their child. To learn more about private education in Singapore, do check out Singapore International School to understand more about their existing curriculum and teaching style. Below, we will explore some of the ways in which sending your child to a private school can help the child get into better high schools and also better colleges.

Private Schools Give Your Child the Option of Enrolling in Advanced Placement Courses Or IB Courses

Public schools mainly have the same curriculum that all students have to follow and they do not give the student or the parents much choice when it comes to following a certain educational program. In the case of private schools, the students have the liberty to choose between AP or IB courses that are rigorous curriculum that focus more on learning and understanding the different topics that are included in the system rather than just blindly following what the teacher says. This helps the child to develop their own method of thinking and analyzing topics that interest them. The by-product of passionate and inquisitive learning is an increase in the student’s concentration and interest. This helps them be more focused when they choose the path that they want to walk on later in life.

Singapore Private Schools Pay More Attention To Sports

Anyone who has ever played a sport in school can attest to the fact that being a good sportsman can help increase the chances of the student to get into a good college with the help of a sports scholarship. Private schools focus more on sports and extracurricular activities which further helps the students increase the chances of getting into a better college. Many students from private schools are also able to build a future in sports due to the fact that they were a part of a very good sports program in school. Private schools also have a wide variety of options when it comes to the students having to decide which sport to choose.

Private Schools Help Your Child Succeed In College

Studies have shown that out of those students who were enrolled in private schools almost 99% of them graduated high school and 90% went on to finish a 4-year college course. This is due to the fact that private schools such as hire good counselors that help the child as well as their family to explore all of the options that they can choose from and also helps them to make the right decision that will benefit the child. It was also found that students from private schools asked more questions and were more involved in the class even when it was not required.

Private schools help to groom your child in a way in which they will be prepared for life and anything that can be thrown at them in the future. They are also able to get better options for internships in high school and also better employment after graduation. This will help to give the child the confidence to live the rest of their lives striving to reach greater places.

Choosing And Preparing For The Right Preschool

One of the most important things that parents must put their attention to is their child’s education. It is something that must be planned well and monitored well. Why? Because it is a necessity of man and as early as possible, a child must already have a proper education from a proper school. Preparing for your child’s education is not easy. Parents should make sure that his/her child is ready for school. There are a lot of other things to consider and parents should make sure that they planned about it so well.

If your child is about to go to school, then you should read Aimee Geroux’s article which will tell you how to prepare your toddler for school.

How To Prepare Your Toddler For School

Junior kindergarten is an important step for every young child. During junior kindergarten, kids learn the basics they need for the rest of their school years. The experts are not kidding when they say the first five years are fundamentally important. Whether your little one is in daycare or at home with you, you need to be involved in their learning.

When my oldest daughters were young they attended daycare as I was a single mom working full-time. While they learned a great deal in daycare, I made it a daily routine to read and teach my girls the basics.

With Bella, I have been blessed to be a work-at-home mom. I have loved being home with Bella to teach her all that she needs to know to enter school. This is especially important to me because Bella was born premature. Coming into the world in late December instead of on my scheduled c-section date in 2014 means she will start school at 3-years-old.

I won’t lie, I have thought many times about holding her back for a year. It is a decision I have contemplated in my head as I lay in bed night after night. And every time I come to the same conclusion, I feel in my heart she is ready. I also believe a little bit more structure and rules will do her a world of good! Read more here.

Teaching your child basic knowledge beforehand would be a big help in preparing your child for school. You can already teach them at home alphabets, numbers, shapes, writing names, and others. Doing this would actually make things easier and lighter for your child in school.

Another thing to consider before sending your child to school is choosing the right school. In a country like Singapore, there are many preschools around but we cannot just choose a school because it is near your home or the fees are cheaper. That is why Chelsia Tan will help us with this matter by giving us four things to look out for when choosing the right preschool for your child.

Nursery at Tanglin in Singapore: 4 things to look out for when choosing the right preschool for your child

New to the whole process of selecting the best nursery for your three-year-old? Thankfully, Singapore’s not short on preschools that offer a holistic education, and one such example is the Nursery at Tanglin. Tanglin Trust School prides itself on specialising in British-based education developed to reflect the needs and circumstances of its children. The Nursery at Tanglin combines child-focused learning with the latest educational research and best practice. Here, Victoria Thomas, Head of Nursery, tells us more.

A close-knit community

It may be located within a large campus, but the nursery is a warm, welcoming and stimulating setting, offering a fun and happy learning environment for all children. Each class of 20 is guided by a teacher and two teaching and learning assistants, and there are shared areas within the nursery to encourage interaction across classes. What’s more, if you’re planning on continuing your child’s education at Tanglin, this place prepares children for the rest of their learning journey. Read more here.

A close-knit community, an out-of-the-classroom syllabus, a dedicated team, and an open-door policy are really some things that we should look for when choosing a school for your child. Chelsia Tan has given a good example which is the Tanglin Trust School in Singapore. So if you are living near the area, then you should probably consider sending your child to that school. If not, My Little Campus also provides nursery services at a few different locations, head over to http://mylittlecampus.com.sg/our-services/nursery/ to find out more.

Parents also have some questions in mind about whether a bigger school is better or not.  Lianne Chia will then tell us if bigger is really better. She will also tell us the role of mega centers in Singapore’s pre-school landscape.

Is bigger really better? The role of mega centres in Singapore’s pre-school landscape

Large childcare centres are becoming an increasingly common sight in Singapore’s pre-school landscape. Channel NewsAsia’s Lianne Chia looks at the benefits of these centres, and the unique challenges they face.

SINGAPORE: Carrying a green backpack and wearing the distinctive white, blue and red uniform of Singapore’s largest pre-school operator PCF Sparkletots, six-year-old Larren Kiw smiled shyly as he arrived at his school in Marsiling.

Spanning 3,000 square metres, the bright, airy centre is the anchor operator’s largest yet, with capacity to take in 370 children. There are green walls, a rooftop playground, and lots of space for children like Larren to try their hand at planting – and harvesting – vegetables.

Larren is enjoying the facilities today, but it has not always been the case: This is the third pre-school he has attended. Read more here.

One thing that students can benefit from big schools is the large play areas and outdoor gardens which could also contribute a lot to a child’s learning. So if you could ever afford to send your child to mega centers, then you should not hesitate to do so. Having a child is not easy because you have to take extra care of them. You have to carefully plan for everything because it would be for their future. When it comes to education, you should give your best in preparing them for it because it is an important part of their life which will contribute a lot for their future.

Is pre-schooling a great way to prepare your kid for the kindergarten

If you have made a tentative decision to admit your kid to a pre-school, you are advised to firm it up because a pre-school education will very effectively prepare your kid suitably so he will be able to adapt to the new and more structured environment that prevails in the kindergartens in Singapore . Let us now delve a little deep into this.

1. Though you, as a parent, may not have a deep understanding of the feelings of kids, you may not need a special type of education to know that children have an emotional side as well. This means that when they are suddenly exposed to a stricter and more structured environment that generally prevails in a kindergarten, they may get emotionally upset. This is not good for their mental growth. Not only that, when they are not able to cope with the new ambiance, their confidence may get a severe beating.

On the contrary, if you ensure that your kid gets a pre-school education, you can be certain that the child gets at least some exposure to a structured environment. This will do a world of good in preparing his mind appropriately for transitioning to the kindergarten stage.

2. A good pre-school will suitably jump-start the education process of your kid. All along, your child may have lived in the cozy ambiance of your home and you have been providing him with all the guidance. Of course, you may have taught him a few little things. But whatever little things you have taught him may not be of much use in molding him or making him school-ready.

On the other hand, a good pre-school will make your kid school-ready or to be more specific, kindergarten-ready. This means that a pre-school is not exactly a school in the strictest sense though there may be rules and a structured ambiance in it also. In other words, children will enjoy a relaxed atmosphere in a pre-school but at the same time, they will learn some of the minor but very important things such as following instructions or directions, obeying rules, and so on. They may be able to convey their needs to the school staff and teachers more clearly as well.

There is an additional benefit if you put your kid in a pre-school. When he reaches the kindergarten stage, you, as a parent, need not put forth any extra efforts nor do you need to worry about how he will cope with the slightly more difficult lessons he is taught in his kindergarten.

3. Your kid may have a lot of scope to interact, talk, and listen to other children studying in the pre-school in which you have admitted him. The more he mingles with other children, the better will be his social skills. This will pave way for improving his soft and inter-personal skills that will be useful for him when he grows up as an adult.

On the contrary, if you decide against admitting your child in a pre-school, you will be torpedoing his chances of acquiring such soft skills. Never forget the fact that nowadays, employers expect excellent soft skills from their employees. Even entrepreneurs need lots of soft and inter-personal skills. In fact, when your kid reaches the kindergarten stage, his soft skills will help him in a number of ways.

4. Good pre-schools will have trained teachers and staff who will guide and teach your kid to be more cooperative with everyone. There will be a number of activities in which your child may be asked to participate as a team member. These activities may demand a lot of coordination among the children. In other words, by admitting your child in a pre-school, you will be enhancing his capabilities to coordinate with others. This will improve his chances of shining in the kindergarten ambiance as well.

In short, pre-schooling is certainly a great way to prepare your kid for the kindergarten education.

How studying in an international pre-school can be a game-changer in a child’s life

Nothing is more important than providing the right type of education to kids during their early childhood because the life-long effects of such an education on their social, emotional, and physical development can be profound. In fact, children who have had an excellent pre-school education are found to have a higher IQ than those who are not lucky enough to get such an education. That is why you are advised to get your children admitted in an international pre-school.

If you admit your kids in a Singapore private school that follows the International Preschool Curriculum, you can be certain that the children will grow as “complete” individuals. Let us now look at the benefits such a school bestows on your children and how this move can be a game-changer in their lives.

1. The curriculum followed by international preschools is comprehensive in nature. Not only that, the schools adopt an all-encompassing approach for developing critical thinking abilities as well as other essential skills in kids. Since the curriculum is based on an objective and inquiry based learning style, children are likely to excel in a number of areas that include Language Arts, Creative Arts, Numeracy, Sciences and Motor Skills and Socio-emotional Skills. Children will learn a foreign language also. So, when they grow up, they will be much ahead of other children who have studied in other schools. Regardless of whether they decide to go for employment, take up professions or launch their own business ventures, they are likely to stand out.

2. Since an international pre-school provides a creative and holistic environment that consists of child-initiated learning as well as teacher-directed tasks, the kids will be allowed to undertake exploratory tasks for understanding the theories that are taught to them. So, when they step out into the real world and when issues confront them, they will be able to tackle them easily by being creative and by coming out with innovative solutions.

3. In general, send your child to a good international preschool Singapore as there are state-of-the-art facilities for children. Kids will have adequate learning spaces because classrooms will be spacious and bright. Children will indulge in physical activities because the play spaces will also be spacious. Such an ambiance will add to the all-round development of the children and hence, they will be in possession of that “extra” factor that differentiates them from the crowd.

4. Very importantly, international pre-schools will have teachers with enviable qualifications. In fact, the preschools themselves will provide their teachers with suitable training that comprehensively equips them for molding the students the way they are supposed to do. Not only that, there will be ongoing opportunities for the teachers for facilitating their professional development and for fine-tuning and polishing their skills. This means that these teachers will have updated knowledge of the innovations that keep taking place in their fields. The teacher-to-student ratio in these schools will be low also and hence, kids will get optimal attention. In fact, these aspects will do a world of good in instilling confidence in children. Therefore, when the kids grow up, they will approach every task including those that are aimed at solving issues with an “I can” attitude.

5. International preschools involve parents of the kids in their education process. The schools communicate regularly with the parents by conducting frequent meetings and sending weekly newsletters. This is for ensuring that children do not move away from the right track. So, children who study in these schools will understand the value of values. This will help them follow only ethical ways in whatever they do.

6. More importantly, if you admit your children in a good international preschool, there are chances of they getting opportunities to study abroad. In fact, it will be easy for the children to get admission in institutions of repute in other countries. Not only that, children who study in international schools will be able to easily pick up what is taught in those foreign institutions. They will be able to easily adjust to the new ambiance. So, when they come out after completing their studies, they can have a grand take-off in their profession or career.

APFF Local 384 To Host A Benefit For FF Jason Fazio

When Jason Fazio awakened the morning of his 41st birthday, he could never have imagined that his life was about to change forever. The fire call came in at 10:13 am, January 10, 2011. While searching for victims in the building, Jason was caught in a flashover. Engulfed in flames, he leaped from a 2nd-floor window to save his own life, resulting in debilitating and career-ending injuries. With third degree burns to over half his body, as well as fractured bones, Jason was airlifted to St. Barnabas Burn Center in Livingston, NJ, where he remains today.

Jason is a 17-year career veteran of the Asbury Park Fire Department and a dad to two boys, Nicholas and Nathan. This tragic event has forever changed their young lives as well. Even as immediate emotional support has been overwhelming, a lifetime of financial support is our objective. A severe burn injury is arguably the most devastating of all firefighting injuries by every measure of pain, suffering, and cost, exacting a great human and financial toll. We can never change what happened, but with your help, we can change the financial burdens of their future.

The Asbury Park Firefighters Local 384 will be holding a benefit:

” Lifetime of Support”

The Jason Fazio Fund

Sunday, May 1st, at the Headliner, Rt. 35 Neptune – 3PM
$20 Admission includes all-night Happy Hour, food, 2 – 50/50 raffles and a gift auction
Tickets available in advance or at the door, contact:
Doug De Wysocki (732) 433-6616 OR Gavino Siciliano (732) 620-3590

Checks payable to APFF Jason Fazio Fund, 800 Main Street, Asbury Park, NJ 07712

have no ambition in this world but one, and that is to be a fireman. The position may, in the eyes of some, appear to be a lowly one; but we who know the work which the fireman has to do believe that his is a noble calling. Our proudest moment is to save lives. ~Edward F. Croker

Register NOW For 13th Annual APFF Charities Golf Tournament

On June 20, 2011, the Professional Firefighters Association of Asbury Park will be holding its 13thannual Golf Tournament at Cruz Farms Golf Club in Farmingdale, NJ to benefit the many charities that our organization supports. Most of the players who are participating represent professional firefighters throughout New Jersey. With over 175 players taking part, it is one of the largest single-day golf tournaments held in the state.

Our non-profit charities organization contributes to many worthwhile causes during the year. Some of the recipients of this fund are Asbury Park Pop Warner, Monmouth County Boys Club, Biddy Basketball, Asbury Park Soccer and Little League. Others include the Monmouth County Food Bank, Muscular Dystrophy Association, American Breast Cancer Foundation, Adopt-A-Family at Christmas, Widows and Children’s Fund of New York Fire Department, National Association for Colitis and Crohn’s Disease, Sloan Kettering, and St. Barnabas Burn Center.

Our organization along with the other charities that we assist would greatly appreciate your support by purchasing a foursome and/or a hole sponsorship.  Click here for Foursome Registration Form and here for Hole-Sponsor Registration.