“We are not isolated. We are all connected—and we can’t selfishly function by ourselves.”
That is what sets the premise of the newly launched interactive children’s picture book, My Little Red Dot–Making Our Home A Better Place by local actor, author and illustrator, Mr Edmund Chen.
First activity book ever launched to teach preschool children Total Defence concepts
One of the many Total Defence Day activities rolled out to help children better understand Total Defence and get involved.
Environmental preservation. National defence. Community mindedness. These are tough concepts that challenges children’s understanding. Even educators and parents grapple with simplifying the information for children to digest.
This book that has taken Edmund three months to create, tackles just that. All graphics were hand-drawn by him, and extensive research was done.
A joint collaboration between Edmund Chen, Nexus MINDEF, and the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA), the book is aligned with the national curriculum framework for kindergartens.
The book has been distributed in early March 2019 to all Kindergarten one and Kindergarten two children from over 500 PCF Sparkletots and My First Skool preschools. That also means reaching a total of over 28,000 children!
It incorporates the five pillars of Total Defence: Military Defence, Civil Defence, Economic Defence, Social Defence, and Psychological Defence.
Prior to the book launch, the 58-year-old had spent substantial time in the various preschools to better understand how to cater material that best aids the little ones’ learning.
His efforts resulted in informative book with colourful, engaging visuals and an inviting storyline that piques interest.
“Let them be exposed, and explore”
Total Defence Day activities: Edmund Chen engaging the children at a PCF Sparkletots centre with his newly launched interactive book.
Children will be taken along a fun-filled adventure where four families of different fish species live; the amicable and vigilant Mr Round and his donut family, amongst others.
While learning how each family has a part to play in maintaining the well-being of the eco-system, it teaches children important values such as resilience, teamwork and unity.
Furthermore, it is fact that children learn best through discussion, according to Ms. Hamidah Juhan, the Lead centre principal of PCF Sparkletots, Jurong West.
The various activities present in this book—colouring, identifying shapes to going through mazes and counting numbers—will provide teachers with an effective way to engage preschoolers and help spark their creative minds.
With each page having “a different purpose”, the book presents many teaching opportunities such as numeracy, literacy, marine conservation, amongst many others.
“A compass for kids”
On where Edmund draws his inspiration from, much of it comes from his culture and experience with his own children and other parents, according to the creator himself.
“It is hard to differentiate what is right and what is fake,” said Edmund. And he hopes that through sharing these values through the book, it can provide “a compass for kids”.
Especially for a small country like Singapore, we should never downplay the importance of our security. Everyone has a part to play in supporting each other—and it all starts with our kids who are the future of tomorrow.
Where to get the book?
For the rest of the public who are interested in getting a copy of My Little Red Dot–Making Our Home A Better Place, Edmund Chen is currently working with distributors to bring it to you.
Look forward to purchasing your own copy from the end of April 2019. Do stay tuned for updates!
There are also other various Total Defence Day activities and collaborations rolled out with pre-schools.
If you would like to get hands on with your children to help them learn about Total Defence outdoors, check out the Total Defence Resource Kit and Total Defence Activity Sheet which are available on the Ministry of Defence resources page for download.
All images are credited to theAsianparent.