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How to Use Brain Training to Improve Memory and Attention in Children

Our brains are wired to work differently. Parents notice differences in how the brains function in their children. For example, one child can accurately determine how long it will take him to complete an exam, while another incorrectly assumes the duration it will take. Some children have an incredible memory, and others struggle with their memory.

Unfortunately, the brain has a natural ability to change itself. When presented with the right stimulation, children who struggle with memory and attention can see positive growth. Likewise, children who are naturally gifted with excellent memory can slowly lose this ability if the brain is not nurtured to retain the same ability.  

Brain training Singapore is crucial, especially considering the level of academic competitiveness to which children are exposed. The following activities stimulate the brain to keep it active and fit enough to perform its functions optimally.

Brain-body coordination exercises

While the body and brain seem independent, their functions are collaborative. One cannot function optimally if the other is not well. This is why children and adults need to exercise their bodies and brain. Some of the exercises the improve brain health include toe wriggling. This exercise helps to coordinate brain responses to body movements and coordination. 

You can also request your child to make use of his non-dominant hand. If your child is left-handed, let him attempt to use his right hand to write, eat, and get dressed. 

Concentration games

Children with a short attention span tend to struggle to concentrate in class. This may explain the poor grades or that tuition is making little difference to your child’s performance. 

Some of the best concentration for younger children involves the use of their favourite toys. Line them up in front of your child, cover them, and then take one away. Ask your child to guess which toy is missing. 

Older children require more intense games. You can place objects before them for a limited time and take them away. Now ask them to name the objects that were before them. You can also randomly mention the house items and ask them to name them in a similar format, forward and backward. 

Introduce online games

Today, many websites offer a range of games that are great for cognitive brain training. The games include Sudoku and Crossword puzzles, both for the younger children and the older ones. Some card games will also be fun and exciting for younger children. 

Board and card games

Family game nights are a great way of ensuring the entire family receives brain training Singapore. Board games like checkers, chess, monopoly, and Yahtzee. You can alternate board game nights with card games, such as UNO, Hearts, and Speed. 

These games don’t just encourage critical thinking. The games also train children to develop problem-solving skills and cooperation since they have to wait patiently for their turn to play. 

Discuss triumphs and challenges

In this era of gadgets and busy lifestyles, parents have limited time with their children. However, spending time with your child discussing their day is part of cognitive training Singapore. Encouraging your child through the hardships they encounter helps them find solutions through their various challenges, including their school work. 

A child’s brain needs to be fed, both with the right nutrition and information. This way, it will remain active and fully functional. Brain training Singapore is essential for all children, and the process need not be expensive. You can choose the activities your child enjoys to make the process fun. 

Conditions that Improve after Listening Therapy

Before suggesting listening therapy, professionals seek to analyze the patient’s conditions to determine if they can benefit from the listening program or not. Listening therapy is known to improve certain conditions, especially for those with poor auditory sensory responses. Therapists often assess the patient’s condition to determine if the listening program is necessary. 

Learn more about Listening Therapy here:

Difficulty writing

Listening therapy is great at building fine motor skills. Children who have a “weak” hand and struggle with holding a pencil can benefit greatly from the listening program. When used together with other sensory processing therapies, listening therapy can direct a child’s attention to the activities designed to help build his fine motor skills, such as playing with legos. 

Anxiety and impulsiveness

Listening therapy helps to balance emotions, especially for those who experience a sensory overload. If your child or someone you know experiences anxiety and acts impulsively, the listening program is a great way to help them manage their emotions. 

Since a listening program session takes at least half an hour, restless and impulsive people learn to see through the tasks they are expected to do without getting anxious. 

Poor eating habits

People with poor eating habits or a restricted diet sometimes have complex psychological disorders. Some illustrate their emotions and feelings through the types of foods they eat and the quantity. Therapists use listening therapy to assess the eating disorder and how much of it is emotional. 

During the listening therapy, patients learn how to manage their feelings and understand the connection between feelings, thoughts, and the body. As they learn to remain calm, patients start to respond positively to their diets. 

Challenges in toilet training

The success in toilet training depends on sensory processing and a child’s emotional state. This is why some parents succeed at toilet training a child within a short time, while others take longer. Sometimes, it can be quite frustrating when you are taking one step forward and two steps back. 

Often, children facing challenges adapting to toilet training have no control over their response. For some, delayed or false sensory responses cause them to react too late or not at all to the call of nature. Listening therapy helps to improve the timely interpretation of sensory stimuli by the brain during toilet training. 

Erratic emotional and behavioural response

Emotional responses, such as tantrums, flattened emotional responses, and anxiety, can be controlled by listening therapy. Some children, especially those with Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), have no control over their emotions. 

It can be confusing for caretakers because many don’t understand why a child would be happy one minute and crying the next. The children themselves have no idea why they are having an emotional meltdown. 

The listening program helps keep a child calm, and over time, they will learn to control their emotions. Since the listening therapy is intensive, the child is likely to get better at controlling his emotions. Ultimately, when he has better emotional reactions, his behavioural responses will also improve. 

The listening program has been designed to help adults and children with various conditions. This makes life easier and more manageable for those going through conditions that are beyond their control. Listening therapy supports other sensory processing therapies for better results. 

Services Offered by Speech Therapists in Singapore

What comes to mind when you hear of speech and language therapy Singapore? Many people assume the services of speech therapists are limited to helping children with delayed speech or adults who have to relearn speech after a medical condition, such as strokes. 

A qualified Communication Therapy in Singapore involves much more than speech. Understanding what a speech therapist does will help you determine if you or a loved one needs therapy. 

Voice management for adults

In this digital era, as professions evolve, more and more people are using their voice to earn a living. Singers, actors, doctors, teachers, public speakers, lawyers, sales representatives. Brand influencers, nurses, life coaches and many other professionals rely on their voices to communicate. Unfortunately, since they use speech daily to communicate, they risk developing problems with their voice. 

Some of the signs of a voice that is developing issues include a hoarse or raspy sound, inability to hit high notes when singing when you had no trouble before, deeper than usual sound, achy throat, and repeatedly clearing the throat. 

Visit a speech therapist as soon as you start noticing changes in your voice. Some of these voice disorders can be remedied with early intervention. Speech and language therapy Singapore is often combined with other treatments for a faster and better outcome. 

Speech and language rehabilitation

Some medical conditions affect one’s ability to speak, while others alter one’s speech patterns. Muscle weakness, a stroke, head injury, degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s, dementia, cancer of the mouth or throat, autism, and Down Syndrome are some of the conditions that affect speech. 

Communication therapy is critical for people who have suffered from these medical conditions. With the right support, one can improve their quality of life and even communicate clearly to caregivers. 

Accent reduction coaching

Some speech therapists have specialized in helping people who have a stronger vernacular influence in their speech. While some people are comfortable with their accents, others are not. Other times, a person may be comfortable with his accent. Still, if it affects his ability to communicate and be understood by others, accent reduction coaching might be necessary.

Psychological assessment and counselling

During the first few sessions with a patient, speech therapists attempt to determine if the speech problem is physical or psychological. Some children and adults struggle with speech because they lack confidence or have undergone some form of trauma that affects their ability to communicate. 

Communication therapy appreciates that speech difficulties are sometimes nurtured by a person’s experiences. So, psychological assessments and counselling are critical in identifying the cause so that the right therapy plan is adopted. 

Address socialization difficulties

It is natural for people to classify people as extroverts and introverts based on their socialization skills. Extroverts have an easy time interacting with people in any setting, while introverts would rather avoid crowds. 

While one’s social behaviour is sometimes linked to personality and upbringing, some people panic at the thought of attending a social event. For some, the problem is the presence of many strangers, while others are just as awkward when attending family events.

When nervous, introverts can barely say a word or even speak in front of a crowd. Speech therapists try to get to the root cause of this discomfort and find ways to boost confidence when speaking in front of a crowd. 

Many public speakers and life coaches have had to go through communication therapy to give them the confidence to walk in front of a crowd and speak eloquently. 

Speech therapists in Singapore provide various services. Some of the services are obvious. However, others may not seem to be the responsibility of communication therapists, but they are. You need to find out what therapy services are available in the facility close to you. This way, you will know when to seek speech and language therapy Singapore. 


The Relationship Between Math and Cognitive Development for a Child’s Mind

math and cognitive development in children

Like many subjects learnt in school, Math is expected to have a positive impact on a student’s personal development. Middle school prepares students for life in college and beyond. Lessons learnt in class have a great impact on how the student will be able to handle the challenges he or she will face later in life.

Math may seem to be a problem-solving subject, but the intricate details help a student develop life skills which will be beneficial later in life. What is the relationship between math and personal development? If your child is facing problems in Math, consider signing them up for relevant enrichment classes for kids that help through holistic teaching.

This article by Mari-James Williams elaborates the impact math has on a child’s development. It emphasizes life skills gained by a student of math. These skills shape a student’s personality and way of life.  

Life skills students of math should have by the time they graduate from high school

  “Everyone graduates from high school knowing how to read, write and do basic math (hopefully). But to be a self-sufficient adult, those skills are not enough. In fact, they’re nowhere close to enough. Advanced skills in academic areas aren’t going to help a young adult out of every jam he is likely to face in the next few years.” Read more  

Math students should be able to relate what they learn in class with encounters they will have in life. Some of these things can be anticipated and preparation is necessary. For example, knowing how to budget one’s money is vital. When a teacher or parent helps a student to understand math concepts by relating theory and life experiences, a student will be better informed and prepared for life after middle school.

In this article, Tim Parker discusses some of the vital life skills a student acquires from learning math.  

Indirect life skills gained from math that shape a student’s mental development

  “Performance on standardized tests full of abstract math may be a good indicator of the higher-level thinking skills of our children, but these tests do little to prepare a child for the math he or she will need as an adult. One study by the Federal Reserve found that people who filed for bankruptcy had an average of one and a half times more debt than their income.” Read more  

Students in middle school learn about investment. They learn the relationship between principal and interest. To them, this is just a lesson. However, this lesson, if well understood, will be used when they are dealing with insurance and other investments. Students who get real-life examples as they learn math will be able to relate what they learn in class with real-life situations. There is also the mental training given by math.

When out shopping, often, one does not need a pen and paper to determine how much money one is likely to spend when he or she gets to the till. Calculating profit and loss is another vital skill that will come in handy later when one is trying to figure out if a risk he or she is considering taking will be worth it or not.  

In this article, Laura Overdeck goes into detail on the role parents and teachers play in the perception children develop towards math. This perception either hinders or manifests itself in the skills learnt by the students during math lessons.      

Practical ways in which math can be taught with the aim being cognitive development

  “As America bemoans its woeful performance in math, we should remind ourselves why we want our kids to do well in math in the first place. Sure, we need the inventive geniuses who make our society better: someone’s got to cure cancer, and build a better iPhone antenna, and develop cheap renewable energy to spare our planet. But innovation is just part of the equation.” Read more here  

Questions have been raised on the quality of math being taught in schools today. Should the content be changed to suit the demands in society today? Should students be exposed to real life scenarios as they attempt to solve math problems? This will prepare them for scenarios which will demand analysis. Otherwise, they will get too excited by huge figures without analyzing how practical those figures are. Many people fall prey to con artists who offer them deals which are too good to be true because they ignored the obvious. If the victims made attempts to understand the offers, many would have known right away that there was something wrong.

By allowing the students to think critically of the problems presented to them, they will not make decisions based on the face value, but instead focus on the facts.   Raising a generation of children who love, enjoy and can conceptualize math based on real life is investing in future generations of children who will appreciate the value of math.

How today’s society perceives math is very telling of what future generations will think of it. Placing a high value to this particular subject and the lessons derived from it will help students grow to be effective managers and even better parents as they will help instill the value of math in their children.

Methods of Improving English In Young Students

enrichment classes for young students

Primary school is the age in which the child is just transitioning from learning letters and small words into forming full sentences and paragraphs. This is the time when it is most important for them to have a solid base of learning so that they are able to grasp this knowledge better and it will remain with them all their life and hence it is important for them to join top enrichment classes.

For any language study, it is important that the child knows the role grammar plays in the language. At a young age, the child will not be able to learn the rules and other strict positions of grammar and hence it is important that the teacher puts forth these concepts in such a way that they get embedded into the child’s mind naturally these are some of the methods that they can use to do this.

SWRL method

This is one of the best methods that can be used for teaching the English language to children and it stands for Speak, Write, Read, and Listen. Any teacher who teaches the lessons should make sure that they follow this Speak, Write, Read, and Listen every day. These are the methods in which a teacher can integrate each of these actions in their daily plan separately.

Speak the language

The teacher can have a communication or a story telling class where the child can come in front of his or her classmates and say a few sentences that they have formed or tell the students a short story that they know. This not only helps them with their language skills but also helps them improve their public speaking and these children are less likely to get stage fright.

Write it out

A word of the day chart can be made for each classroom and the children are encouraged to use these words in as many sentences as they can.

Read internally and out loud

For most students, the library class is always a favorite as they get to read something that is not in their curriculum or that is not a textbook. By encouraging the child to read more they become familiar with the formations of sentences and unknowingly learn the rules of grammar.

Listen to the language being spoken

The most effective way of inculcating listening in primary school kids is by having story time in which the teacher reads out small stories to the children and then asks them simple questions related to the stories to make sure that the children were listening.

Having command of the English language is important as all subjects except for Mother Tongue subjects are taught in English. It directly affects a student’s ability to understand and apply concepts learnt for subjects such as mathematics, sciences, history, geography and even art or home economics. It is imperative that children pick up the English language and can understand when formal education begins.

How Parents Can Help a Child with Speech Delay?

Delayed speech, without other developmental delays, is often treated with speech-language therapy. Additionally, speech-language therapy is often effectively used together with alternative treatments when another diagnosis is behind speech delays in children. 

Since speech delays can affect a child’s ability to learn, an early intervention must be sought. Parents should visit speech therapy Singapore before the child goes to school to ensure he does not face difficulty adjusting to formal education. Even as specialized help is sought, there is still much that parents can do to support and encourage their toddler to speak.  

Talk to the child constantly.

While it may seem pointless to talk to a child who is not responding, the last thing parents should do is stop talking directly to the child. When the child is ignored, he will move on and concentrate on other things that interest him. Children learn by mimicking what adults say, so when a child with delayed speech notices words that parents say constantly, they are likely to start saying the same words before long.

Point to objects when talking about them

Toddlers with delayed speech can still observe their surroundings. Speech therapists recommend gesturing and pointing to objects while saying the corresponding words. For example, when talking about a banana, keep pointing at it by pointing to the banana whenever you mention it. 

Repeating these words, while gesturing means the child will soon associate that word with the object. Besides building language, it helps ease communication with the toddler because even if he doesn’t speak yet, he can still understand what you are saying. 

Sing simple songs regularly.

Speaking with your toddler can still be fun if you include music. Sing simple songs that you can keep repeating. Over time, the child will start enjoying the sounds and will even start picking some words in the song.

Give the child a chance to ask what he needs.

After getting used to a toddler’s non-verbal communication, most parents get too comfortable with it. They learn to anticipate the child’s needs, so he rarely gets the chance to say what they want. This toddler also assumes it is natural for his needs to be met without him voicing it, so he sees no reason to make an effort. When you visit a speech therapist in Singapore, you will be encouraged to give your child a chance to request what he needs. 

Introduce your child to playgroups

If your toddler has delayed speech, you should consider sending him to play with children with great language skills as often as possible. You should do this regularly, so your child can build friendship and even attempt to talk like the other children. If he has a good time, he will start looking forward to playtime. 

Avoid criticizing his speech errors.

When your toddler finally starts speaking, his first few words may not be clear. However, it is best to say the correct word repeatedly instead of criticizing him. Otherwise, he may regress and refuse to say the words he wishes to because he is not confident that they will come outright. 

Speech therapists can only do so much for a child with delayed speech. In some cases, the therapist only has a few hours with the child a week, yet parents spend more time with the child. Parents need to pick up what the therapist is doing and do the same when at home. This means the child is exposed to some form of therapy at home as well. This will go a long way in helping the child develop language and speech skills faster. 

Looking for a Preschool in Singapore? Important First Steps to Keep in Mind

preschool for kids in Singapore

Preschool is without a doubt a critical point in the development of your kid. With this in mind, it is important to consider a few things in advance if you want the preschool for kids to be a pleasant and hassle-free educational experience for your child. It is important to visit the preschool with your kid at least a few times before school starts. This is going to ease the entrance into a territory which is completely unknown. It will also offer you the chance to meet the teachers, as well as to ask about the common and regular routines, activities and also if you have to implement certain home activities or routines.

Important Considerations

When you are in the classroom of the preschool, you should consider letting your kid explore as well as to observe the class in order to determine whether he wants to interact with the remaining kids in the class. The main idea is to familiarise him or her with the overall ambiance and atmosphere which is provided by the classroom and the entire area. Go ahead, take a trip to the bathroom in order for him or her to get properly comfortable and used to it because he or she will be spending a considerable amount of time in the preschool.

A Proper Transition

Keep in mind that this is a very delicate period for your kid. You need to make sure that he or she has a smooth transition from the daycare centre to the preschool. With this in mind, the more familiar your kid is, the easier it’s going to be for him or her to settle in there. Furthermore, if it is possible for you, it’s even more beneficial to visit the preschool during learning hours. Both you and your kid will benefit from this. The parent can observe the overall process that takes place in the preschool while the kid could easily get used to what’s to come.

This is something very convenient, and it’s going to ensure that your kid gets used to the environment in advance. This is going to provide you with a considerable number of advantages, and it’s going to make it a lot easier for him or her to transition to this otherwise completely unknown and considerably scary environment.

Factors Affecting Early Childhood Development in Preschool Children

factors affecting early childhood development in preschool children

Yоung сhildrеn саn be аffесtеd bу many social, economic аnd environmental fасtоrѕ bоth in роѕitivе аnd nеgаtivе ways especailly when they are still enrolled in preschool. Because children аrе ѕо vulnerable, thеу can bе easily affected bу thingѕ mаnу раrеntѕ аnd аdultѕ tаkе forgrаntеd.

There аrе four mаin fасtоrѕ аffесting a kid’s dеvеlорmеnt in preschool: Individuаl сhild behaviour and hеаlth, fаmilу lifе, lеаrning environment аnd parental interactions.

Improper Sреесh аnd Lаnguаgе Dеvеlорmеnt

Thеrе are ѕеvеrаl factors thаt саn have a dirесt effect оn a сhild’ѕ speech and language development, ассоrding to Mѕ. Mаgаn Chen whо iѕ a certified рrасtiсing ѕреесh lаnguаgе pathologist with Sреесh Pаthоlоgу Auѕtrаliа. A fеw оf the many fасtоrѕ thаt mау have аn еffесt оn speech dеvеlорmеnt in сhildrеn, ассоrding tо Chen, include: lасk of ѕtimulаtiоn, dеlауеd mоtоr skills, inаdеԛuаtе awareness оf соmmuniсаtiоn, rеduсеd hеаring, frequent mоving or сhаngеѕ in еnvirоnmеnt, еxроѕurе tо mаnу diffеrеnt languages and high аnxiеtу. Cоnѕult уоur сhild’ѕ paediatrician if hе is ѕuffеring frоm dеlауеd speech dеvеlорmеnt.

Lack of Pаrеntаl Interaction

Parental intеrасtiоnѕ with сhildrеn can have a largely positive оr negative еffесt оn child dеvеlорmеnt. Parents who spend time рlауing and teaching their kids through rеаding and bу реrfоrming vаriоuѕ tуреѕ оf hаndѕ-оn games аnd асtivitiеѕ саn hаvе a роѕitivе imрасt on thеir child’s dеvеlорmеnt. On thе fliр ѕidе, parents whо ignоrе or nеglесt tо intеrасt with their сhildrеn in a positive wау may bе hindеring thеir hеаlthу development.

Lеаrning Envirоnmеnt

Childrеn whо are ѕurrоundеd, both аt hоmе аnd аt school/day care facilities, bу a ѕtrоng lеаrning еnvirоnmеnt thаt iѕ bоth informative аnd ѕuрроrtivе mау improve thеir dеvеlорmеnt. reports that rеѕеаrсh hаѕ ѕhоwn сhildrеn еxроѕеd tо poor аnd undеrрrivilеgеd educational еnvirоnmеntѕ tеnd tо bе at a highеr risk оf being nеgаtivеlу affected in terms of thеir dеvеlорmеnt.


Proper nutrition can hаvе a direct imрасt on a сhild’ѕ dеvеlорmеnt both physically аnd рѕусhоlоgiсаllу. Thеу роint оut thаt proper nutrition iѕ rеlаtеd tо funсtiоnаl оutсоmеѕ fоr сhildrеn аѕ thеу get older. In оthеr wоrdѕ, unhеаlthу еаting can lеаd to wеight gаin аnd оthеr nеgаtivе effects if thе сhild dоеѕ nоt learn how tо еаt healthy еаrlу in lifе. Thе Rоуаl Children’s Hospital ѕtrеѕѕеѕ thе fасt thаt it iѕ thе inсrеаѕеd durаtiоn and intеnѕitу оf the еxроѕurеѕ tо hеаlthу еаting hаbitѕ, thrоugh bоth hands-on lеаrning and lеаding bу еxаmрlе, that rеаllу mаkе a positive imрасt on a сhild’ѕ development.

Sосiаl Intеrасtiоn

Rеѕеаrсh hаѕ ѕhоwn thаt social iѕоlаtiоn or lack оf socialization саn lead to early childhood development iѕѕuеѕ, ѕuсh аѕ speech рrоblеmѕ оr an inаbilitу to socialize with оthеrѕ in a сivilizеd way. It was mentioned that thе socioeconomic еnvirоnmеnt in whiсh a сhild is rаiѕеd саn hаvе a drаѕtiс effect on thеir dеvеlорmеnt. An example of hоw thiѕ соuld аffесt a сhild nеgаtivеlу is if she is nоt ѕосiаlizеd with оthеr сhildrеn, such аѕ neighbours, сlаѕѕmаtеѕ or fаmilу mеmbеrѕ.

Thе wоrld саn bе a frightеning рlасе fоr anyone, еvеn fоr уоung children. Being in an environment that iѕ nоt thеir hоmе for more thаn 6 hours a dау саn be challenging fоr ѕоmе. Gоing through mаnу routines, асtivitiеѕ аnd meeting diffеrеnt people every day соuld bе ԛuitе stressful fоr ѕоmе сhildrеn. Thеrеfоrе it iѕ crucial thаt уоung children dеvеlор ѕtrеngthѕ, асԛuirе ѕkillѕ and be рrераrеd for futurе сhаllеngеѕ.

Children also need to develop ѕеlf-соntrоl. “Children whо rеаliѕе thаt they саn соntrоl thе outcomes of thеir dесiѕiоnѕ аrе mоrе likеlу to realise thаt they have thе аbilitу tо bоunсе bасk. Yоur сhild’ѕ understanding that he or ѕhе can mаkе a diffеrеnсе furthеr promotes соmреtеnсе аnd соnfidеnсе.

Tоgеthеr, with thе ѕuрроrt оf other caring fаmilу and community mеmbеrѕ, wе саn boost сhildrеn’ѕ resilience through еvеrуdау intеrасtiоnѕ аnd mоdеlling. “Childrеn need to knоw that thеrе iѕ an аdult in their life whо bеliеvеѕ in thеm and lоvеѕ thеm unсоnditiоnаllу.

Wе build truѕt and сrеdibilitу thrоugh hоnеѕt соmmuniсаtiоn, dеlivеring whаt wе рrоmiѕе, аnd hаving thе courage tо stand uр tо ѕау аnd do thе right thing fоr оur сhildrеn аnd our соmmunitу.

Choosing a Beneficial Preschool For Your Child

choosing a beneficial preschool for your child

Each child is different. As such a tender age, you should know what is best for him or her. Even trying to figure out what skills they you want them to nurture, what strengths you want them to have, can be on the tricky side. You may want the kid to spend his or her early years with you or maybe with a nanny. Or you may be thinking of finding a good preschool for children to give your child a good start in life. The problem is in deciding which one to put them in.

Is Attending Preschool Compulsory for Children?

After all, this is not required. It does not mean however, that it is not necessary. For all you know, you might just be letting a good opportunity of learning pass. It is understandable that not every parent will want their child to go on preschool. That kind of thing is not for everybody. This is why it is with good reason that they did not make it compulsory. There are no fast or hard rules. Just manage your expectations about it and try to shy away from any preconceived notion.

Which Preschool Should I Choose for my Child?

Explore your options on wanting this for your child. These schools come in all different shapes and sizes. They can range from the most colorful to the most playful rooms that you can find. Sometimes they come as standalone ones, large commercial enterprise types and those attached to regular schools.

Location of Preschool

Try thinking about where you live. Your child should be in a place near enough where you would be working too. This is so you can have access to him or her easily. It allows for dropping and picking them up with little effort on your part.

Recommendations from Friends and Family

Also make use of recommendations from family and friends. If they have an institution they trust, that may be good for your kid too. Never forget to visit the place before choosing it. No matter how sure you are about a particular prenursery school, it helps to include other institutions so you can check and compare what they offer and how their facilities and staff will help nurture your child.

Ask Questions

Speak to the headmasters and do not be afraid to ask questions.  The important thing in doing all of this is that you can trust later on that your child will be developed, to the best of his or her abilities. With the right school and proper guidance, they can continue to grow physically, emotionally, and also cognitively. Not only that. They will be able to play, have fun, and enjoy being children while learning at the same time.

Is There a Difference between Preschool and Nursery?

The terms preschool and nursery can be confusing, especially for parents who are sending their child away from home for the first time. While preschool remains optional in Singapore, many parents are enrolling their children for various reasons. For some, it offers their little ones an opportunity to socialize with other children, while other parents are looking for a place where their children will be cared for as they run errands or go to work. However, how do preschools differ from nursery school Singapore? Read ore about nurseries in Singapore here.

Age of admission 

One of the distinguishing features between preschool and nursey is the age of admission. For most preschools, the age of admission is between 18 and 30 months. However, some preschools offer kindergarten or nursery curriculum, so children still receive the necessary primary school preparation in preschool. Such preschools offer admission to children up to the age of 6 years. 

Most nursery schools enrol children between three and six years of age. Most children progress from preschool, which is often known as playgroup, where play is the focus. Once they come of age, these children move on to kindergarten for introduction into formal education. 

Daily class duration

Preschools offer half-day programs, running from 7 am to 1 pm and an afternoon session from 1 pm to 7 pm and full-day programmes running from 7 am to 7 pm. Some preschools also offer flexible schedules, depending on the demand for their services. 

Nurseries, on the other hand, offer three-hour programmes on weekdays. Kindergartens have the freedom to determine their school programs. Most Nurseries run between 8 am and 11 am, but others also offer services between 12 pm and 3 pm. 

The reason for the shorter schedule in nursery schools compared to preschools is the three hours are spent learning, as opposed to preschools, where play and siesta are included in the preschool program. 

Approach towards education

Although many preschools focus on play, children still gain some skills and education during the period they are in school. Some preschools have even adopted kindergarten curricula to attract parents who are hesitant to move their children from one facility to a nursery school Singapore. 

However, even for preschools with kindergarten curricula, education is slightly different because most use a mixed approach, both play and academic-based education. Nursery schools, on the other hand, focus on performance, and the foundation to formal education. So, the program has an academic focus. 

Nurseries follow the school term program dictated by the Ministry of Education (MOE)

Nursery school Singapore follows the term program designed by MOE. This means nursery school children go on holiday at the same time as those in primary and secondary school. They also stay home during public holidays. 

Preschools, on the other hand, have greater independence when coming up with the preschool program. Some remain open during public holidays, usually offering half-day programs. 

Nursery schools offer light snacks.

Since children only attend kindergarten for only three hours, most nursery schools only provide a light snack between lessons. On the other hand, Preschools provide at least two major meals, usually breakfast and luck, as well as a midmorning and midafternoon snack, depending on whether the preschooler is attending the half-day or full-day program. 

There are several differences between a preschool and nursery school Singapore. Parents need to appreciate the features that make the two programs different when enrolling their children. This helps with planning since they can tell how long a child will spend in preschool before progressing to nursery school. Parents who prefer enrolling their child in a preschool offering the kindergarten program should consider this when searching for a preschool. 

Comparison between MOE Kindergartens (MK) and Private Kindergartens

The nursery school program in Singapore lasts three years, usually from age three to six years. The first year is commonly referred to as nursery, the second year as Kindergarten 1 (K1) and the third year is known as Kindergarten 2 (K2). Nursery school Singapore provides a healthy environment for children to interact and prepare for formal learning in primary school. 

When trying to find nursery school Singapore for your child, you will be choosing between a private kindergarten and MOE kindergarten. It is best to understand the difference between these kindergartens so you can determine which one is most suitable. 

MKs offer two-year kindergarten programmes. 

The Ministry of Education (MOE) has so far established 28 MKs across Singapore. These kindergartens offer 4-hour K1 and K2 programmes, with the morning session operating between 8 am to 12 pm, and the afternoon session between 1 pm and 5 pm. Children who attend MKs join at the age of 5years (K1) and 6years (K2). 

On the other hand, private kindergartens offer a three-year program for children between ages 4-6 years. The school sessions also last three hours, for the morning and afternoon sessions. 

MKs are strategically located close to selected primary schools.

MOE’s strategy to attract more parents to MKs is by strategically establishing the kindergartens close to primary schools. This is done to ensure a smooth transition from nursery school Singapore to primary school. 

Admission into these primary schools is often prioritized for children who attend MKs. Parents who intend to send their children to the affiliated primary schools often prefer sending their children to a MOE kindergarten to make admission into primary school much easier. 

A little bit of travel may be necessary in some cases since most of these primary schools are located within residential estates. While some private kindergartens are located in residential areas, others are located in prime locations, such as malls, business parks, and close to MRT stations. 

MKs follow the MOE academic calendar.

If you have children in primary school and prefer a kindergarten that follows the same academic calendar, you should consider an MK. According to the MOE academic calendar, your child will have four major vacation periods adding to about three months. Should a public holiday fall on a Sunday, then Mondays will be considered rest days. 

If, on the other hand, you require greater flexibility, private kindergartens remain open all-year-long. Most private kindergartens close for about seven days, including a three-day holiday on the eve of major festivals. 

Fees of MKs are subsidized and standardized.

One reason for the great disparity in fees charged by kindergartens is the presence of subsidies. MKs charge Singaporean children about $160, while permanent residents pay $320. The Kindergarten Fee Assistance Scheme (KiFAS) is available for households earning a gross income of less than $6000. 

Private kindergartens have the freedom to determine their fees, with some charging a little over $1000 a month, while others charge more than $2000 a month. Anchor operators receive financial support from the government, so their fees are subsidized, with some charging $720 a month. 

Private schools have a lower teacher-child ratio.

Most private nursery schools in Singapore have a teacher-child ratio of 1:15. Some even have a lower ration of one teacher for every ten children. The MOE K1 has a teacher-child ratio of 1:20, while that of K2 is 1:25. So, if your concern is individualized care, you may need to consider a nursery school with a lower teacher-child ratio. 

Several unique features distinguish MKs from private kindergartens. It is vital that you appreciate the differences, and what they mean to your child before deciding which facility is best for your child’s nursery education. 

What We Can Do To Learn Spanish Faster and Easier

Language, whether in written or verbal form, is the most essential part of communication. Without language, we wouldn’t be able to speak or understand the people around us. We wouldn’t be able to express what we want. Learning a language is important yet difficult. Spanish is one beautiful language that we can learn and discover. Note that we can still do a lot of things in order to make learning Spanish faster and easier.

If you are looking for a Spanish course in Singapore, you should check out Berlitz Language School Spanish Class. They are one of the most established and oldest language schools in the world, and they offer a wide range of language courses and at varying proficiency levels. If you want to learn Spanish seriously, you should check out their site above.

First off, Effective Language Learning will first tell us some reasons on why we should learn Spanish.

Reasons to Learn Spanish

Out of all of the other languages, why is it important to study Spanish? Why not go for Russian, French or Italian as they appear to so useful these days, particularly if you are a US citizen. However, due to the increasing number of Latin Americans, the ability to converse in a language that is extensively used could be a priceless advantage.

More schools are becoming bilingual, with the Spanish language being emphasized. There are also some locations around the country, for instance Miami, where there are more Spanish speakers living there than native English speakers. The Spanish language is among the most widely used worldwide, though the exact position is hard to determine, as so many people who speak Spanish also speak another language.

The majority of the Latin American countries, particularly in the South and Central America, speak Spanish with an increasing number of individuals living in the US. That is nearly a whole hemisphere filled with the Spanish language! There is also Spain, obviously, and while their Spanish may be somewhat different from the Spanish in the Latin America, it is still Spanish, and learning one makes the other much easier to pick up. Read more here.

One of the important reasons on why we should learn Spanish is that you would be able to understand foreign friends better. It is true that language can pull people together and it would really be great if we are able to talk with our foreign friends.

Next up, in an article by Lukas Gohl, we are going to read about eight essential tips for learning Spanish.

8 essential tips for learning Spanish

IT KILLS ME me when I meet other gringos here in Chile who have their Bachelor’s degrees in Spanish, but still struggle with conversation.

Spanish is one of the fastest-spreading languages in the world and is often listed as among the easiest for English speakers to learn. With this in mind, why aren’t there more people fluent in Spanish?

Like all failed New Year’s resolutions, there’s saying and then there’s doing. The key is to have the right tools and mindset to help you stay focused and have fun learning. Here are some tips to get you started: Read more here.

One of the tips given above is that you should make learning Spanish a part of your life. This is true enough. You should apply everything that you have learned in your daily activities. Try to communicate with people in Spanish speak Spanish songs, watch Spanish movies, and a lot more. For additional tips, let us also read the article by I Will Teach You A Language.

7 Tips To Learn Spanish Fast

In this article, I’ll show you how to learn Spanish fast!

You’ll discover the 7 key areas I’d focus on if I had to learn how to speak Spanish confidently in only a few months.

I’ve drawn on my experience of learning 10 languages and identified the key study practices that result in you being able to actually speak Spanish as quickly as possible…

  • Without moving abroad
  • Without quitting your job to study full-time
  • And without marrying a Spanish speaker … at least, not yet! Read more here.

As mentioned in the article, you don’t have to travel abroad in order to learn Spanish. You could learn Spanish anytime and anywhere. We have a lot of resources around like books. We can also have online tutors and actual teachers. Learning a language really takes time and effort. However, with all that we have right now like the internet and other stuffs, learning can now be faster and easier.

Topics to Discuss About Your Child’s Speech Therapy with A Speech Therapist



Once your child is diagnosed with speech problems or disorders, your appointment to the speech therapists is set. Your speech therapist will perform several evaluations to understand the severity of the problem and accordingly design a plan that will best suit your child. After your child has been diagnosed with the impediment, it is imperative that you learn as much as possible about the problem and do a bit of reasearch to stay organized and up to date with any discussion that your therapist may ask.

For the speech therapy to work properly, the cut and dry plan designed for your child is not enough. There are a few things that you should know and discuss with your therapist.

4 Topics That Needs Discussion with the Speech Therapist
Next time when you go to meet your child’s speech and language therapists, here are a few things that you need to discuss.

Results of the process- After the evaluation process, you will understand from your SLP whether your child requires speech therapy. If he requires therapy ask your SLP about the duration of the therapy and the results you can expect. Enquire about your role in the entire process. In case your child is not diagnosed with speech problem, you can also ask the SLP for some easy activities that you can perform at home with your child to improve the quality of speech. Asking questions related to the results of the therapy or the evaluation will help in better understanding and better preparation for what lies ahead.

The Prognosis- The SLP for your child’s evaluation will guide you and discus her findings with you. This he or she will do in terms of severity of the speech disorder. Usually the diagnosis is done in the parameters of mild, moderate, severe or profound. Once you understand the prognosis, ask about the treatment of the process. If the condition is treatable your SLP will suggest techniques that will guide you to next the next actions for improvement.

The Treatment and Duration- Once the results of the evaluations are discussed with you by the speech language pathologists, you need to discuss in detail about the treatment that you need to follow along with the duration. You and the SLP need to plan the therapy that suits the child best. Schedule the sessions accordingly. Though there is a standard time set for speech therapy for every child, still you can ask your SLP to get more frequent sessions if required. Sometimes these sessions vary from 30 hours a week to 4 days a week, other times the attention span of your child is considered to conclude the plan of a speech therapy session.
A severe speech problem such as stuttering may take anywhere from 6 to 18 months, be prepared for such plans.

Expectations and Goals- As and when you talk to your speech therapists to set the plan for the therapy, discuss the goals you set for the success of the treatment. As a part of the normal goal, you should make your SLP understand that becoming an effective communicator and developing normal speech is an expected development you want to see in your child. If your child has problem of stuttering, then eliminating stuttering can be a goal that you can set your SLP.

Getting a plan from your SLP and listening to the ideas is not enough to get a solution. This is an occupational therapy fo children hence you need to ask all the tough questions and get a solution for every question you have asked. It is the matter of your child, hence satisfying your queries is crucial to effective resolution. Do not hesitate to ask questions at any point of the session, your child will benefit from it.


Toddlers often have trouble with pronunciation and difficulties putting sentences together. A child between the ages of 18 months and three years will mispronounce many words., It’s perfectly normal to have to play a guessing game to figure out what your child is saying, and at times you may have no clue what she’s getting at. That’s okay!
If the problem is not pronunciation but rather that your child isn’t talking or is talking very little, you should act a little more quickly.

Most of the major speech defects are found within five main categories:

• Speech sound disorders including articulation problems (difficulty producing specific sounds) and phonemic (difficulty with sound distinctions of language) disorders.
• Fluency problems such as stammering and cluttering (rapid, slurred speech).
• Voice disorders, including problems of pitch, voice quality and volume.
• Delayed receptive (understanding) or expressive language, characterized by a child’s slow language development.
• Aphasia, the partial or total loss of the ability to speak or understand language.

Your child may have language concerns in one or more of these categories, such as delayed speech with articulation problems. It is important to have your child monitored for developmental milestones and diagnosed early and accurately if you notice any speech delays or other communication problems.

The goal of speech therapy for children is to improve skills that will allow your child to communicate more effectively. There are other benefits as well. These can include:

• Improvement in the ability to understand and express thoughts, ideas and feelings
• Intelligible speech so your child is understood by others
• Increased ability to problem-solve in an independent environment
• Achievement of school readiness skills
• Development of pre-literacy skills
• Development of practical social skills
• Greater self-esteem
• Increased independence

A speech-language pathologist (SLPs), also known as a speech therapist, is a professional trained to evaluate and diagnose speech and communication problems. Speech therapists, often work as part of a team, which may include teachers, physicians, audiologists, psychologists, social workers, rehabilitation counselors and others.
If a child has difficulty saying words that begin with “b,” the therapist may suggest daily practice with a list of “b” words, increasing their difficulty as each list is mastered. Other kinds of exercises help children master the social skills involved in communicating by teaching them to keep their head up, maintain eye contact, and repeat themselves when they are misunderstood.
Speech interventions often use a child’s family members and friends to reinforce the lessons learned in a therapeutic setting. This kind of indirect therapy encourages people who are in close daily contact with a child to create opportunities for him or her to use their new skills in conversation.
Your child’s work with a speech therapist may last for months or even for a few years. It depends on your child’s needs. You will probably see improvement in your child’s issues. Remember, though, that therapy can’t “cure” your child. The underlying speech or language issue will still be there.
The therapist should give you and your child strategies to deal with obstacles more effectively. She will likely give you activities to practice at home to reinforce the skills your child is learning. Kids who make the most progress tend to be those whose get involved in their treatment.
It’s important that the speech therapist and your child are a good match. The speech therapist should have experience working with kids with your child’s specific issue. Speech therapy is just one way to help a child with learning issues related to language and speech.


Giving & Stewardship

At Westminster, we believe supporting the work of the church through the giving of money, time and talents is important.

What we need to keep in mind, actually in our hearts, is that as followers of Christ indwelled by the Holy Spirit, we live from a life perspective that permeates every aspect of who we are and what we do. Jesus talked about money because of its tangibility as a gauge of how we have adjusted our world view as his disciples.

To give sacrificially of ourselves and our resources should not be an agonizing yearly, monthly or weekly decision. It proceeds naturally from the depths to which we have allowed the Holy Spirit to dwell with in us.

Members of Westminster financially contribute through e-giving, checks or cash donations. Each member prayerfully decides how often and how much they wish to contribute. Our newly established Heritage Society encourages members to contribute through a will or estate planning.

Additionally, members are asked to consider their talents given by God for use in the Church. A few ways to serve both in and beyond Westminster may be found here.

Caring & Support

The members and staff of Westminster Presbyterian are committed to providing love, care, and support to each other as we walk the path of life with Christ and answer God’s call to be servants to those in need.

If you are in need of care while in the hospital, or during an emergency, there are many avenues available to you. Our Stephens Ministry program, along with our Shepherds and Deacons provide support to members of the congregation. It’s how we help each other!

Emergency (and non-emergency) Pastoral Care: Every day one of our ministers is available to respond to Pastoral emergencies and non-emergencies. Should an emergency arise during business hours please call the Church Office at 815-282-1500.

Members are sometimes in need of care but are not in crisis. You may inquire about all care that is available through the Pastoral staff, Stephen Ministry, and a variety of resources within the church family by contacting Joan Slack, the Caring Ministries Coordinator by e-mail (email)or by calling the church office at 815-282-1500. All information given will be handled confidentially.

Parish Nurse: Wendy Slick-Davidson, our parish nurse, is an experienced registered nurse knowledgeable in health care. The parish nurse delivers holistic, health-promoting and preventive care that is based on the concept of mind, body, and spiritual well-being. The roles of the parish nurse include being an educator, advocate, health counselor, resource coordinator, referral agent, and an integrator of faith and health.

Blood pressure check up?

Call Wendy to discuss your needs or any health concerns.

Hospital Care: The Caring staff extends compassionate ministry and prayer to those who are hospitalized through personal visitation in the area’s hospitals. Recent changes in the law have limited the information hospitals can give to those requesting information about patients, so it is necessary to contact the Main Office to report any admissions or surgical procedures. Visits are normally made within 48 hours of the notification, but quicker response is offered if there is an emergency.

Stephen Ministers : are specially-trained to provide one-on-one Christian care with confidentiality and accountability, undergoing 50 hours of intense training to develop listening skills, crisis intervention and learn how to minister to others in specific situations such as illness and grief. They are also trained when to refer someone to a skilled professional.

Consider Stephen Ministry for Illness, Loneliness, Loss, Separation or divorced, Being shut-in, Pregnancy or birth of a child, Low self-esteem, Single parent support, Victims of crime or victims of natural disaster, Hospitalized or in nursing facility, or Family frustrations and challenges.

To request a confidential visit from a Stephen Minister, or if you’re interested in becoming trained as a Stephen Minister, contact Rev. Bill Ward at 815-282-1500.

Home Bound: The Pastors, Deacons and our Parish Nurse regularly visit those members who are confined to home or in facilities such as nursing homes and assisted living.

Grace Ministry provides an equipment lending service for our members and friends.
If you know of anyone that is homebound and would be in need of equipment, please contact the Main office (815-282-1500) Barb Muzzarelli (815-633-5534).

Prayer Quilt Ministry: Each quilt or square is designed and constructed with prayer for the person who will receive that particular quilt. What ever the circumstances are, they ask for the Lord’s blessing in those circumstances. Prayer quilts/squares are completely constructed by the loving hands of our finest quilters, but it’s not finished until it has been blessed by the Reverend and prayed over by the congregation. As the knots are tied on the quilt, prayers are said for the person and family who will receive the quilt.

Shepherds Who Care: Westminster neighbors pray for each other, keep in touch, keep each other informed, and are available for questions about the church.

Non-Employed Networkers group meets on Monday mornings twice a month. Join other people for networking and support.
For questions, call Pete Darelius (815-227-9153).