Parents using PA School Holiday Series to engage children
Plans for her children to pick up archery and aikido during the June holidays had to be shelved when phase two (heightened alert) restrictions were announced.
Madam Nur, a research assistant, had to turn to online programmes to keep her two children, aged five and seven, engaged during the month-long break.
"Starting the June holidays this year has been more organised and structured, with online activities to keep my children occupied at home," said Madam Nur, 30.
She has enrolled her children in jewellery-making and sushi-making courses, part of the School Holiday Series organised by People's Association (PA).
The series has 36 programmes, from chocolate-making to paper quilling, an art form. Children can also learn how it is like to be a farmer in New Zealand and shadow a frogologist at work on Singapore's only frog farm.
Madam Nur said that the programmes allowed her to understand her children's strengths and weaknesses when working together as a family.
The costs of the courses range from $10 to $60, inclusive of materials kit and delivery.
There are also free courses, such as the Yakult Educational Factory Tour and an online learning journey to find out more about Tetra Pak cartons.
While these programmes are intensively hands-on, conducting them online is a challenge that the instructors have faced.
Ms Tan Ching Ching, 39, a PA instructor, said she had to design material kits from scratch to accommodate her watercolour painting lessons.
"Online teaching requires more preparation, while instructions need to be further broken down to avoid any miscommunication," she said.
Ms Esther Siah, 46, another PA instructor, said that beyond adjusting the curriculum to suit online teaching, different platforms such as WhatsApp for effective communication is crucial, especially with parents and children who are not as vocal during the lessons.
Details of the courses are available at go.gov.sg/shs-brochure-21