The cub went for a Dino Discovery Camp at The Little Executive’s during this school holidays! Every morning of the camp, he would prepare himself enthusiastically for the day ahead at TLE. Every night, he would regale us with what he did in camp and what he learned about the dinosaurs upon our return from work. The excitement was unmistakable! In fact, he felt sad as we got to the end of the week cos it meant that the camp was ending soon.
As mentioned in my previous post on TLE, they focus on 3 core areas in their approach – Executive Functioning Skills, good Learning Habits and Growth Mindset. While the camps are based on themes that interest kids, the focus remains the same. And I must add, TLE really goes to great lengths to create heaps of fun for the kids with the themed-activities.
Even snacks for break-time are dino-themed!
TLE also incorporates 21st century competencies such as Collaborative Problem Solving, Analytical Thinking, Interpersonal Skills & Teamwork, Communication and Innovation/Inventive Thinking into the activities. The cub has been working on these skills in his regular classes, and got to put them to practice as he tried to solve problems and tackle quests with his friends from camp.
Each child participating in the Dino Discovery Camp has a folder of field notes. (The cub LOVES his folder of dinosaur information, and brings it around when he takes his dinosaurs out to play at home!) Inside these field notes, parents can tell some of the things the children learned in the camp, and what are the skills acquired or to be practised during the activities.
For example: based on what the cub learned about dinosaurs in the first two days, he was able to apply skills such as paying attention to details, comparing and contrasting, and drawing conclusions.
On the last day of camp, parents were invited for a presentation to see for themselves what their kids had been up to! :p
I was beaming with pride to see the cub take initiative in taking turns with his friends, and sharing what he had learned confidently during the camp in front of everyone when he was asked.
Thrilled to show us the dinosaur egg he made himself and how to hatch it.
Let me highlight one activity I managed to catch some glimpses of on presentation day – Grid Work.
TLE does a lot of Grid Work with the kids. The teachers will explain the concepts and start with simple worksheets before moving on to the 3D grid work carried out in teams. Just what is the benefit of doing Grid Work?
For one, Grid work trains visual tracking. This is important when we want to know which word we stopped at and can continue from there on. Many things are presented in this way – timetables, menus, etc.
Grid system is a typical way a fossil site is organized
Secondly, strategizing. Grid work is like a chess game and helps to develop skills such as planning or thinking ahead, being creative while working with constraints, spatial orientation, perspective taking, and faster processing mental abilities.
Pretty cool that all these knowledge and skills are being imparted to the kids while they play and have fun! I wish we had such fun and educational programmes back in my school days. The cub had such a wonderful time during the camp, he asked if he can go for another one. That was my cue to use this as a reward, so I promised to send him for fun holiday camps if he continues to show positive learning attitude in school and enrichment classes! 😉