The Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) is currently exploring ways in which they can use robots in pre-schools. Robots have been used for pilot studies but could soon play a bigger role in teaching preschoolers. In future, robots are expected to take up the roles and responsibilities of teachers and teach students in a more fun and efficient manner.
The pilot studies that are currently being conducted in Singapore by the IDA are a closely monitored procedure. People are trying to understand the impact of using social robots for collaborative play and interactive story telling.
These preschools in Singapore, My First Skool and MY World, are collaborating with the IDA and Nanyang Technological University for the pilot study.
Pepper and NAO
Two humanoid robots – Pepper and NAO – have started interacting with preschoolers and are helping them in fun and interactive ways. The six-month trial is an experiment to see whether social robots can take up more serious roles in the future or not. Pepper is a 1.2m robot and has a touchscreen on its chest. Pepper is put up at My First Skool in Jurong Point and has been reading stories to interact with children. NAO is smaller than Pepper and has been put up at MY World in Bukit Panjang. NAO takes a step further by dancing along with story-telling.
Teachers in the two preschools in Singapore have found that with the robots around, kids are interacting more. They love the touchscreen on Pepper and adore its voice. The sight of the robots too has made it easier for the kids to interact with them. However, teachers still want to see how differently-abled children would interact with the robots.
As teachers work with researchers and collaborators from the IDA and the Nanyang Technological University, developers keep developing new lesson plans for the preschoolers.
The impact of robots on preschoolers
Up till now, the results of the pilot study have been amazing. Kids are showing great response towards the robots and together they are exploring many things through play. One of the best parts of using robots as preschool teachers is that they will never lose their temper, which can be common while handling naughty kids. Overall, it seems that IDA would want to take the next step as far as the results of the pilot study are concerned. It will be interesting to see how these robots handle tougher responsibilities.
As we all know, maintaining good hygiene is very important for good health. These habits should be inculcated both at home and at school. Good hygiene is very important when it comes to Singapore infant care . Here are a few activities that can help the children understand the importance of good health and hygiene.
Healthy white teeth are the key to a great smile. However, it is a major task getting children to brush their teeth every morning. A simple experiment using a hardboiled egg, some dark soda, toothpaste and a toothbrush can teach children the importance of brushing their teeth every day. Keep the hardboiled egg in the dark soda overnight. The next morning it can be seen that the shell of the egg will be pigmented from the soda. Using a toothbrush and a little toothpaste tell the children to start cleaning off the egg. Make sure to mention and make the children notice that the stain on the egg is being removed by the toothbrush and toothpaste. Relate this to real life and explain why it is important to brush teeth every day.
Clean hands are the next in line. During the day, children touch and play with everything that they can find. Using a working sink, soap and a towel, show each child the correct way of washing their hand. Discuss when it is most important to wash their hands, such as before eating and after using the toilet. Discuss how clean hands can help them stay healthy and avoid germs.
Bathing everyday is another good hygiene habit that should be taught to the children. Using a doll and a sink, show them the correct way to apply shampoo to the hair and spread soap on the body. Later, the importance of staying clean should be discussed with the students.
The next topic to be discussed should be keeping nails short and clean. A rubber hand and some fake nails can be used to show the children how to cut their nails, but always insist that they do it only with the help of their parents or an adult. Explain that biting nails is a bad habit.
Discuss the importance of washing hands before eating. Also discuss how it is important to eat using clean utensils and never eat anything that was on the floor.
Child care centers have spread like wild fire all over Asia and the main reason is the changing lifestyle and social attitude among parents. Gone are the days when women would spend their time at home, looking after the young ones. Nowadays, women have become bread earners for the family too. They are changing the way society views them and are sometimes achieving more than their male counterpart. But the lifestyle change is affecting children because parents don’t know how to work things out when they have children. For this reason, child care centres in Singapore have been established in order to take care of infants and kids until either of the parent becomes available.
Parents are now able to breathe easy because the child care centres in Singapore are safe and certified to take care of children. The nurse and teachers present at the center are well trained and experts at their job. Moreover, the children seem to enjoy going to such centers as they get to do loads of fun activities and make friends.
The growth of the child care industry
In Singapore, the child care industry has witnessed a substantial amount of growth in the last decade. Centers are offering different flexible programs that parents can choose from, according to their own timings.
The child care centers have different activities for children. Not only does it keep them engaged but it also improves their learning ability and cognitive functions. A typical day’s routine at My First Skool involves feeding milk to infants, changing diapers and getting naptime. For kids who are older, a range of activities is available. The activities include reading, drawing, singing and playing. Through these activities, the children learn basic things that prepare them for tackling bigger problems in life.
The parents are happy with how the child care centers treat their children. The centers, on the other hand, upload photos of children to their respective parents to ensure that they are doing fine.
Gaining the trust of parents
One of the major obstacles faced by child care centers when they first started out was gaining the trust of parents. Parents, too, were skeptical about leaving their children in the hands of unknown people. But in time, the centers gained the trust of parents through constant communication and assurances. Now, parents don’t have a problem sending their children to child care centers before heading off to their workplace.
Watching TV, helping them in potty training and managing play dates is not the end of your responsibilities when you have a little kid at home. According to experts of child care in Singapore, there are lots of things that add to big worries at a later stage for parents; here are a few important things new parents should know that can help them in managing the growth of their child in a better manner.
Top Tips for Toddler Health Care:
One of the biggest worries parents are the head bumps that a few months old kid starts developing when he starts to learn how to walk. Kids often bump their heads while trying to move from one place to another so parents need to pay attention to this trouble. If the bumps are mild, then there is nothing to feel worried about, However, for big falls, there are chances of serious head injuries. If you notice something serious then it would be preferable to call a doctor as soon as possible.
Sometimes parents feel their child does not like to play with other kids or prefers being by himself whereas other parents have problems like their kids are always busy playing with other children around. Don’t worry about whether your child is anti-social or social at this stage because before 3 years of age, kids usually do not like to interact with other kids whereas after this age, they prefer to get involved naturally. When your little master is doing things purposefully then it is completely fine.
One of the common issues in the early growing stage of kids is the growth of their teeth as this duration becomes a little painful for the child as well as parents too. As soon as your child starts developing his first tooth, it is right time to consult doctors for directions to be followed. Sometimes doctors offer special treatments to toddlers for better growth of teeth and it also assists them in pain management.
Toddlers and TV:
Child care centres in Singapore have advised parents to keep kids away from the TV until they are of 2 years old and even after this age, you must allow them to watch only educational programs. The time for games, TV, computer and studies must be well managed so that the kids can develop equal interest in all things. What kids watch on TV is going to have great impact on their overall development so try to be very careful about the TV hours of your little child.
Parents are responsible for developing better eating habits in kids so that they can have all the necessary stuff for growth in their body. One must get milk on time and try not to develop choosy behaviour for food items in your kids. Otherwise, it will create trouble for you. It is preferable to consult your doctors to get an idea about what is good to eat and what must be avoided by your child.