theAsianparent.com scoured the CBD and we came across Pat’s Schoolhouse Raffles - conveniently situated at the prime business district adjacent to the distinctive Raffles Hotel along Beach Road.
As parents, it is natural to want our children to constantly be close by our side. However not everyone has the privilege to be stay-at-home mums or dads. For the working parents amongst us, the next best option is to have your child located at a preschool or childcare centre near your workplace.
With this need in mind, theAsianparent.com scoured the CBD and we came across Pat’s Schoolhouse Raffles – conveniently situated at the prime business district adjacent to the distinctive Raffles Hotel along Beach Road.
Pat’s Schoolhouse Raffles
The first thing that caught our eyes in this brand new centre is the extravagant use of glass walls, which allows visitors to have a full view of the interiors with one cursory glance! The classy centre is well-equipped with a full range of facilities and is certainly a haven for children.
The rooms are thematically decorated based on what is being taught each term, hence allowing the kids to wholly immerse themselves in the curriculum and reap the full benefits of it. Pat’s Schoolhouse Raffles has done an excellent job in including play materials as most of the toys selected are placed in a strategic position to encourage children to be engaged in dramatic and creative play.
Upon entering, we were immediately greeted by the senior principal of the centre, Ms Sally Pang who took time out of her busy schedule to give us a walking tour of Pat’s Schoolhouse Raffles.
While showing us the best features of her centre, the warm and attentive Ms Pang shared that she was originally from Pat’s Schoolhouse Katong and has 14 years of teaching experience under her belt! It is no wonder then that Ms Pang is a mentor to both the old and new teachers of Pat’s Schoolhouse.
In Tune With Technology
One thing that stood out as we toured around the centre was the strategically located iPads and spanking new computers. While we found ourselves drifting towards the iPads, we could not help wonder if they were for the teachers or the students? As if reading our mind, Ms Pang chipped in that “we live in a technology immersed world and children are exposed to computers, laptops and iPads from a very young age. At Pat’s Schoolhouse, we recognise the benefits of using technology and we do include the use of the iPads into some parts of our enriched curriculum. However, the children are often immersed in hands-on activities and interactive experiences before being introduced to the iPads.
The emphasis on technology was also evident when Ms Pang shared a little more about FasTracKids, a programme that they offer which originates from the United States. The programme allows the kids to explore the world outside using state-of-the-art technology. With the help of a projector and SMART board, the children get to experience kinesthetic learning by moving their fingers along the whiteboard while SMART board’s sensor traces the motion.
Besides a focus on technology, Pat’s Schoolhouse Raffles also emphasises on physical exercises using their indoor gym. The centre boasts a rubber-floored indoor playroom that is packed with gym facilities to allow children to develop their physical talents and interest.
“Music is a beautiful tool that can overcome all language barriers. At Pat’s Schoolhouse we use music to nurture self-awareness and hone the children’s social skills, at the same time expose them to the wonders of melody, rhythm and dance,” shares Ms Pang. “Music is a big part of our curriculum and we have a spacious music room for our children to explore space and music throughout the week.”
Music for the older age group include ‘Harmony Road’ and ‘The Music Library’ which focuses on music appreciation, notation and the use of musical instruments such as the echo cellos, marimbas and xylophones. Some of these instruments are unique to the Pat’s Schoolhouse music curriculum.
Another key feature of their curriculum is the emphasis on speaking and writing Mandarin. “Thoughtfully designed by Patricia Koh, (the founder-director of Pat’s Schoolhouse) the pre-school Bilingual Immersion encourages equal emphasis on Mandarin and English. Both the language teachers are co-partners for the same class and they interact with the children in their respective languages throughout the day,” explains Ms Pang.
When it comes to phonics, reading and writing, Pat’s Schoolhouse adopts a very effective pedagogy with the help of some imaginative friends who live in a wonderful place called Letterland.
To pique the interest of children learning the otherwise mundane phonics, Letterland translates dry phonic facts into engaging stories. These anecdotes explain letter shapes and sounds and quickly develop into word building, reading and writing.
Find out more
If you are interested to find out more about Pat’s Schoolhouse Raffles you can reach them at +65 6781 2288. The centre currently accepts children between the ages of 2 to 6 years old.