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Eye Level Math - Learning From The Child's Level #2

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

It has been two months since my last post about Eye Level. Like I mentioned in my earlier post, it is really not easy to find a class that caters to Big J's learning needs. Most learning centres group the students according their age and teach the same curriculum to the whole class. I am really glad to find Eye Level because they offer an Individualised Programme that allows children to learn at their individual learning level.

Here are some updates about Big J's progress with Eye Level. During these two months, we had our first Parent-Teacher Meeting. The teacher told me the progress of Big J and the plan for future months. She also shared the areas that need improvement, such as his attention span and handwriting, both of which I know is a big challenge for him.


Apart from the academic progress, Eye Level also believes in encouraging the students to become Self-Directed Learners. This is a life-long process and to become a good learner, there are some values which are important. Specifically, Eye Level @ Jurong West has this monthly 'report book' that reviews how the child is progressing based on the values of Politeness, Responsibility, Independence, Discipline and Enthusiasm (PRIDE). I feel that this is something that is different from the top-notch learning centres which are more focused on the academic chase.




In my previous post, I mentioned that the Math curriculum consists of two parts, Basic Thinking Math (BTM) and Critical Thinking Math (CTM). BTM focuses on understanding the basic mathematical knowledge and skills, and covers the following areas: Numbers, Arithmetic, Measurement, and Equations.

When Big J first joined Eye Level, he started at Level 2 Math, which focuses on numbers up to 30. During the beginning, there was a lot of repetitive work and progress was quite slow. I saw the same concepts through quite a number of booklets. It was always counting and sequencing numbers up to 30, counting up and counting down. Big J was complaining "Counting again?". However, the colourful pictures did make it less boring.

When he finished Level 2, it was time to take the Level Test. He has no problem with the test and proceed on to Level 3. He was very proud about it and came out of the room saying "Mummy, I'm doing Level 3 now!"


Then, he went on to learn about numbers to 50, 100 and even up to 120 now. The progress for the bigger numbers is indeed faster. This is because he already had a strong foundation counting and working with numbers up to 20 and it becomes very easy to apply the same concepts to the larger numbers. This is how the Systematic and Progressive Approach helps him to fully understand the concepts before learning more complex concepts. I call this 'Slow but steady'! Very soon, he will be learning addition!

Counting by tens

Place values

Numbers to 120

As for the Critical Thinking Math, he is still enjoying this portion! CTM helps to develop advanced application and problem-solving skills, and covers the following areas: Patterns and Relationships, Geometry, Measurement, Problem Solving, and Reasoning.

He continues to work on more complex patterns, shapes and visualisation. These critical thinking skills helps to build up logical thinking which will be very helpful when he proceeds on to primary school, especially heuristics math.


 Big J is close to completing his reward chart and is excited to get his prize!


Back at home, he is also more independent in getting his homework done. Although he still whines a bit, he knows he still need to get it done whenever I said 'It's time to do your Eye Level homework.' Thank you to Eye Level for helping him along with his Math!

To read more about my first introduction post about Eye Level, please click here.


Fees


Apart from Math, Eye Level also offers a English programme:

Eye Level English (suitable for age 3 to 14)
Eye Level English starts at the basic motor skills needed for reading and writing, goes onto the building blocks of grammar and phonics, and then to the more complex concepts that allow the development of communication skills and content knowledge. The key language skills to be developed are listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Using a thematic and integrated approach, Eye Level provides students the confidence in learning English through its systematic language acquisition programme.


Eye Level Math (suitable for age 4 to 14)
Eye Level Math takes the student through a continuum of study areas covering basic skills, as well as advanced concepts and applications. Each level emphasises critical thinking through reasoning skills that students can apply to everyday life.


If you are interested in finding more about Eye Level, do check out their website. You may also email or contact the individual learning centres to find out more about the curriculum or to schedule an appointment to visit the centre. Find a centre near your home here.

Eye Level @ Jurong West

Address: Blk 960 Jurong West St 92 #01-182 (Upper Level) Singapore 640960
Contact No: 6686 2328
Email: Jurong.West@myeyelevel.com

Eye Level has 19 learning centres in Singapore. Find a centre near your home here.
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Disclaimer: We were sponsored complimentary lessons with Eye Level Singapore to try out its Math programme for the purpose of this review. No monetary compensation was involved. All opinions, texts and photos are mine, unless otherwise stated.

If you enjoyed reading this post, please feel free to share it with your friends. I would be glad if you could follow me on Facebook or Instagram


DIY Terrarium - Masons Home Decor

Monday, 22 May 2017

I have always wanted to grow some simple herbs or vegetables in our own home, but I do not have green fingers. Most plants that landed in my hands died. When Masons Home Decor approached me to review their Premium DIY Terrarium Kit, I was worried that the plants will not last long. However, I read that terrariums survive pretty well and are low maintenance. Hence, I took up the challenge. Furthermore, it will be a good bonding activity with the kids.

Everything arrived in this big box...


...with all the tools and accessories required to put together the terrariums. It comes with two big glass jars, shovels, decorative pebbles, terrarium soil mix, activated charcoal, water spray bottle, some decoratives and 9 small pots of succulents and plants.


It even comes with a guide on how to make the terrarium. It is as easy as 1-2-3!


Both Js are eager to start making their own terrariums. Let's get started!


Step 1: Cover the bottom of the jar with some small pebbles to provide drainage. Done!


The steps are really easy to follow. Even Big J has no problem following and reading the instructions. 


Step 2: Put a layer of activated charcoal. Done!


Now comes the messiest part of the whole making process. I actually get quite bothered to see the soil falling all over the table and on the floor. And with the fan blowing, the soil is flying all over the living room! Nonetheless, the boys had fun scooping and pouring the soil into the jars. 

Step 3: Fill your jar halfway with soil. Make a hole in the soil and put in the plant.

When we were about to put in the plant, we realised that the roots of the plant is taller than the soil we had in the jar. So we tried to add more soil to try to cover up the roots. Then, we realised that we need to brush off the excess soil from the plant before putting them into the jar, otherwise it will be too big for the jar. So through much trial and error, we finally put in the plant properly.



After all the plants are in, here comes the most therapeutic part - decoration! I can feel my anxiety from earlier going away as I slowly decorated the terrarium. 

Step 4: Decorate the surface with pebbles and decorative accessories as to your liking.


Ta-daa!! Our finished product!


Here's a close-up.


We had so much fun making this terrarium together. Just nice that we were doing some Earth's Day activities during the week when we made these and the boys learnt about how planting can help to save the Earth. The process also reminds me that it is inevitable for some messes when we are creating memories.

Here are some tips if you are keen to make your very own terrarium:

1) Get something to contain everything you need, including the mess. You can do this in a huge tray or even with the cover of the big box that the terrarium kit comes in.
2) Cover the floor of the work area with newspaper so that it is easier to clean up.
3) Do not have any fan blowing at the working area.
4) Plan how you want to put the plants into the terrarium and how you want to decorate them before you get started.

If you are interested in making your own terrarium, do check out Masons Home Decor. I think this makes a great gift for any occasions! Apart from terrariums, Masons Home Decor also carries a variety of home decor products, party supplies and seasonal decor.

Masons Home Decor

Address: 14 New Industrial Road #05-02A, Hudsons Industrial Building, Singapore 536203
Contact No: 6285 2815
Email: hello@mason.com.sg

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Disclaimer: We received a complimentary Premium DIY Terrarium Kit from Masons Home Decor for the purpose of this review. No monetary compensation was involved. All opinions, texts and photos are mine, unless otherwise stated.

If you enjoyed reading this post, please feel free to share it with your friends. I would be glad if you could follow me on Facebook or Instagram


Pretend Play @ The City, Liang Court

Monday, 15 May 2017

When Kidzania first opened, we wanted to bring the boys there. However, after reading reviews of the place, we felt they were not suitable. They are not that patient to wait for their turns and might not be able to fully follow the rules and instructions compared to other older kids. 

If you have a child who is keen in pretend play but is too young for Kidzania, you might want to try out The City. Designed for 2 to 8 year-olds, The City is an indoor playground that allows children to try out the different occupations in a city. 


Let's find out what are the jobs available at The City!

Police Station



The police station comes with the police uniform and police cars. This gotta be my boys' favourite station, not because of the dress-up but because of the police cars! 


Children can ride the cars around the track and pretend to be police chasing after thieves. Do keep a lookout for these cars if your children are playing around the area as the cars can get pretty fast. The staffs do go around telling the drivers to be mindful of the speed, but when cars and boys go together, it's fast and furious! Unfortunately, Big J really got into an accident and bump into one of the staffs. So sorry about that!

Supermarket



The supermarket is the biggest play area at The City and is also the favourite of almost all the children who visit the playground. The mini trolleys, real packaging of the goods and being a cashier make the experience so real.


What I like about the supermarket is the use of the real packaging of the food and products, just like shopping in a real supermarket! It also raises the awareness of recycling to the children.


In the supermarket, the child can be a shopper. There are shopping lists which the child can use to purchase items. Prices of the items are placed near the items so the child can learn about money and budgeting. 


Apart from being a shopper, the child can also choose to be a cashier. Here, the cashier will scan the items, input the price into the cash register, total up the purchase and bag up the purchases with the recycle bag. The shopper will pay for his purchase with 'City Dollars'. How real!



The Heroes



In the Heroes area, the child can use the foam blocks to create whatever they can imagine. This is where the child can be his own hero of his city, building the city of his dream. 

To add an educational element, there are pictures cards which challenge the child to build a structure as seen in the picture. Staffs will be around to guide and help the child.


Of course, you are free to let your imagination run wild and build your own city or even to destroy them.


Together with the help from Daddy, the boys built a car fortress! The boys had great fun hiding inside the car and scaring each other as they jumped out of the hole.


Classroom



In the classroom, there are educational toys such as construction toys, puzzles and letter games. Children can pretend to be students or even teachers. 



There is also a world map in the classroom. There are some activities written on the board that encourage your child to learn about the world.


Post Office



Next up is the post office. Here, the child can write little postcards as send it out. Crayons, stamps and cards are provided.


The child can also pretend to be a postman. Here's Small J collecting the postcards from the mailbox and sorting them into the different slots at the post office.


Clinic



For children who like playing doctor, they will enjoy the clinic. There are some dolls and soft toys which the children can pretend to give them a check-up. There is also a huge poster on the wall showing the parts of the body.


Salon


There is also a salon where children help to dress up the dolls with accessories. My boys have no interest in this though.



Cafe



In the middle of the playground is the pretend cafe. It comes with a kitchen which is well-equipped with pretend food and equipment. There are also tables and chairs for the customers. 


A menu is also provided to make the dining experience more realistic. The child can take order from the customer and prepare the food for serving.


Dress Up


If your child loves playing dress up, there is quite a variety of costumes, from princess to superhero, over here. 


Facilities


Like most indoor playgrounds, The City has a lounge area for parents to sit back and relax. They do not serve hot food but has some simple snacks and drinks for sale. Free WiFi is also available. However, do note that there is no nursing or changing facilities available in the playground.


There is also a party room if you are looking for a place for birthday celebrations. Check out the birthday packages available here.


Verdict


We visited The City on a weekend and spent about 2 hours there. For my energetic boys, they enjoyed driving the Police car, playing at the Supermarket and building and destroying towers at the Heroes area.

I really like the use of real empty packaging for the supermarket which makes the experience more realistic. Apart from just normal pretend play, The City also adds on an educational element to the play. For example, learning about money at the supermarket, body parts and personal hygiene at the clinic, construction and imagination at the classroom and heroes area and many more. There also have staffs who go around 'popping' in and engaging with the child in their play.

If your child really likes pretend play or enjoys dressing up, they would definitely like The City. I think this is will be a good place to try out pretend play if your child is still too young for Kidzania. 

Admission Rates


Children can enjoy unlimited play time on Weekdays and 2 hours playtime on Weekends, Public Holidays and School Holidays.

Babies under 1 year: Free (if accompanied by a paid sibling)
Under 2 years old: $18
2 years and above: $22
Adults: Free

For more information about membership and package promotion, please refer to here.

GIVEAWAY


Thanks to The City, we have 2 entry passes to giveaway to 2 lucky winners (1 pass per winner)! 

Simply follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter below to win! Giveaway ends Sunday, 21 May 2017, 11:59pm. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and Conditions:
1. Giveaway ends on Sunday, 21 May 2017, 2359 hours (Singapore time).
2. Open to Singapore residents only.
3. All entries have to be completed. Incomplete or invalid entries will be disqualified without notice.
4. Limited to one winner per household.
5. Giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
6. We reserve the right to amend the terms and conditions without prior notice.


The City


The City Flagship (Liang Court)
Address: 177 River Valley Road, #03-04A Liang Court, Singapore 179030
Opening hours: 10am to 7pm, Daily
Contact No: 62506507

Email: info@thecity.com.sg

The City @ Katong
Address: 112 East Coast Road, #03-31 i12 Katong, Singapore 428802
Opening hours: 10am to 7pm, Daily
Contact No: 64441520

Email: katong@thecity.com.sg

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Disclaimer: We were invited to The City for a play session for the purpose of this review. No monetary compensation was involved. All opinions, texts and photos are mine, unless otherwise stated.

If you enjoyed reading this post, please feel free to share it with your friends. I would be glad if you could follow me on Facebook or Instagram



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