With today’s preschoolers growing up as digital natives at home, The Little Skool-House International On-the-Green has been piloting how digital aids can be integrated into the classroom too.
Working together with Panasonic Systems Asia Pacific and Temasek Polytechnic, The Little Skool-House, based at Orchid Country Club, has been testing how technology solutions can be integrated into the classroom with a pilot project ongoing since May 2013.
Under the project, Panasonic’s Panaboard, an interactive, touch-sensitive whiteboard that allows up to three users to use the board simultaneously, has been paired up with software developed by the School of Engineering, Temasek Polytechnic for The Little Skool-House’s use.
Dubbed PLAY (Panasonic Learning & Activity Solution), the digital solution comprises modules specially created to aid in the development of cognitive and social skills in children at the Nursery to Kindergarten levels. Modules include KinderDraw, an application that allows children to practise writing and drawing digitally on the whiteboard, KinderGames, a “jigsaw-puzzle-like” game for kids to solve, and several others.
Ms. Stella Pereira, Cluster Director, The Little Skool-House International, shared that the pilot’s purpose is to explore how technology can complement and support The Little Skool-House’s emphasis on experiential, hands-on learning.
As an illustration of how this is being done, during a visit by Little Day Out, a group of pre-schoolers was given the task of playing some instruments along with a song they had composed. After the children were handed some shakers and maracas, three children were selected to go up to the Panaboard to play a virtual piano and virtual drumset from PLAY’s KinderMusic module. This allowed the children to be introduced to additional instruments not otherwise found within the classroom environment.
“In developmentally appropriate settings, resources such as KinderDraw and KinderGames enrich and complement The Little Skool-House’s curriculum by encouraging learning through purposeful activities and enhancing self and social awareness through interaction with peers. We are excited to explore how we can continue to respond to children’s different learning styles by using different mediums to broaden and deepen their learning in the future,” explained Ms Pereira.
Thus far, the pre-schoolers have been receptive and comfortable with the use of interactive technology in the classroom. Panasonic and The Little Skool-House International On-the-Green intend to continue collaborating on the pilot project.