Five young teachers received the Outstanding Youth in Education Award (OYEA) from Mr Heng Swee Keat, Minister for Education, at the National Institute of Education (NIE) Teachers’ Investiture Ceremony on 9 July 2014. They are:
- Miss Gidwani Poojalal, 31, from Haig Girls’ School;
- Mdm Nur Ain Binte Ahmad, 34, from Park View Primary School;
- Ms Lin Xiaojun, 28, from Chestnut Drive Secondary School;
- Mr Mohamed Ashiq Bin Mohamed Elias, 34, from Pasir Ris Secondary School; and
- Miss Khairiah Bte Hairoman, 34, from Peirce Secondary School.
Selected from 14 finalists, the five winners strongly believe that education is about nurturing the child holistically. They have sought to nurture all-rounded individuals through their lessons and interaction with students. These teachers have also distinguished themselves by adopting innovative approaches both in and outside the classroom, as well as demonstrating dedication in stretching their students’ potential. Please refer to Annex A for more information on the award winners.
The OYEA is a national award that recognises young teachers for their commendable enthusiasm, energy and active involvement in youth development. Since its inception in 1999, 49 outstanding young educators, including this year’s winners, have received the award.
The OYEA winners were selected by the OYEA Selection Panel, comprising representatives from the Ministry of Education, the National Institute of Education, and the National Youth Council. A total of 4,549 nominations from the schools and members of the public were received for 911 teachers from 216 schools in 2014.
Besides honouring the achievements of young educators, OYEA aims to inspire youths that teaching is a fulfilling profession. Besides receiving a trophy and citation certificate, all the OYEA winners will be fully sponsored to attend an overseas professional development programme. The list of the 2014 finalists and details of OYEA are in Annex B.
Some 550 students from 30 pre-university institutions, including Junior Colleges, the Centralised Institute, and Polytechnics will come together at the Pre-University Seminar 2014.
The theme for the Pre-University Seminar is “Many Stories, One Future”. The seminar will be held from 2 to 5 June 2014 at the National University of Singapore. The theme invites participants to focus on the authentic stories of Singaporeans from different sectors and walks of life. Students will interact and connect with Singaporeans from diverse backgrounds by visiting people, organisations and places of interest. This focus on stories will encourage young people to connect with others and become more aware of the diversity of needs and aspirations of fellow Singaporeans. Students will present their insights to fellow participants and guests on the experiences, needs and aspirations, as well as the challenges and opportunities facing Singapore. They will also contribute ideas on building the Singapore they would like to see.Pre-University Seminar Highlights Project: The Story
This year’s Seminar will encourage student collaboration, imagination and involvement. Students are grouped by sub-themes and each group must discover and explore a part of the “Singapore Story” by doing the following four components:Field Work
Each group of participants will visit people, organizations or places of interest related to their sub-theme. During the field work, participants will have the opportunity to interact and connect with Singaporeans from different backgrounds and learn about their experiences. These glimpses into the lives of Singaporeans, whom the participants may otherwise have not encountered, will deepen their understanding of what it is to be a Singaporean. It will also help them to better appreciate the challenges of building an inclusive society, which provides for a diversity of needs and aspirations.Forum Discussion
Each discussion will:
focus participants’ findings from their Field Work;
involve three panelists, selected for their specific area of expertise;
be moderated by Teacher-Facilitators, with the assistance of the Student Liaison Officers. This will ensure that all participants and panelists are given the opportunity to take part in the discussion meaningfully.
Participants will share the experiences of the people they meet in an informative and engaging manner through a creative medium. This can take the form of a photo-journal display, an interview, a performance piece or any medium that the groups think is feasible and effective.Reflections
The members of each team will write their reflections on the implications of the Story they are sharing. The process will be facilitated by guiding questions to allow teams to share:
an analysis of the issues revealed by the Story;
an examination of participants’ personal response to these issues; and
a team pledge committing each member of the team to make a positive change in the way they live as citizens.
Please refer to the Annex for the sub-themes and guiding questions.Carnival@Closing
This year’s closing ceremony will be a carnival celebrating both the participants’ creative expressions and the lives of Singaporeans. In keeping with the carnival spirit, participants and guests will freely mingle and interact at the various booths.
The International Conference on Teaching and Learning with Technology (iCTLT) 2014 is jointly organised by the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the Academy of Principals, Singapore (APS). It is held from 7 to 10 April at the Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre. Mr Heng Swee Keat, Minister for Education, is the guest of honour for the Opening Ceremony on 9 April.
The theme for iCTLT 2014 is, “Enhance Pedagogy, Engage Learners, Enable Action and Empower You”. Conference delegates will be engaged in discussion on different aspects of the conference theme.
More than 1,500 local and overseas delegates are expected at the conference. Participants include school leaders, educators, academics, researchers and classroom practitioners, as well as industry leaders. iCTLT 2014 serves to connect educators from various countries as they collaborate and explore possibilities in the use of ICT to create an engaging and effective education for our 21st century students.Programme Highlights
Renowned speakers — including Dr Yong Zhao, an internationally known scholar and author, and Mr Aaron Sams, the co-author of Flip Your Classroom — Reach Every Student in Every Class Every Day and a founding member of the Flipped Learning Network — as well as a diverse group of academics, school leaders, teachers and industry partners will share their insights and knowledge on the use of technology in education. Presentations include pedagogies for the 21st century student; innovative and emerging technology learning environments for teaching and learning; and ICT leadership to bring about pedagogical changes in schools.
The School Leaders’ Track and UpClose sessions with keynote speakers are two special platforms to empower the education fraternity. Another highlight is a student-led panel discussion, Students’ Voice — Hear IT from Our Students. Participants can engage students from three Singapore schools, Fuhua Primary School, Ping Yi Secondary School and Innova Junior College. Together with an Australian school, Parramatta Marist High School, students will share their views on the pervasive presence of technology in school and in their lives.
EdTech SparkPlug is the newest platform in the iCTLT resource exhibition for educators to learn how the latest educational technology can enhance teaching and learning. Featuring an exciting line-up of innovative educational technologies, presenters will bring participants the brightest spark that will help make a difference to maximise every student’s learning.
In addition to the main conference, participants, presenters and speakers can interact and exchange ideas, resources and strategies for effective ICT implementation through online learning communities, against a backdrop of emerging trends of educational technology.
iCTLT 2014 is supported by Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore, National Institute of Education, Singapore Tourism Board, and the Singapore Exhibition and Convention Bureau.
For more information on iCTLT 2014, please visit the conference website.
At MOE ExCEL Fest 2014 on 11 and 12 April, visitors will discover the latest innovative teaching and classroom practices which cater to the different ways our children learn in school. These practices, across every stage of our students’ learning journey, demonstrate how our schools bring out the best in our students by developing 21st century competencies as well as values and character for them to succeed in life and contribute back to society.
- Over 65 exhibition booths by primary schools, secondary schools and post-secondary educational institutions to showcase their latest initiatives and programmes. Our students will be on hand to conduct free guided trails featuring Learning Through Games, Parent Engagement, and Character and Citizenship Education;
- More than 70 sharing sessions by teachers which feature topics ranging from critical thinking and creative problem solving to character development through innovative strategies;
- Over 35 seminars which feature guest speakers such as Mr Ron Sim, founder of Osim, where visitors can pick up tips on learning for life and on the inculcation of values and character education.
This year, MOE ExCEL Fest 2014 will also play host to the inaugural Parent Support Groups (PSG) Conference on 12 April. The PSG Conference is a first-time collaboration between PSG members, Community and Parents in Support of Schools (COMPASS) and the Ministry. It is organised by parent support group volunteers who will contribute and share their expertise, experience, and enthusiasm for PSG at the conference with other parents to bring out the best in every child. Guest speakers will share on how school-home partnerships can be strengthened from the perspectives of parents and school leaders. (Please refer to Annex A for more information).
Mr Ong Swee Teck, Chairperson, MOE ExCEL Fest 2014 Organising Committee, said, “MOE ExCEL Fest celebrates the spirit and successes in ground-up innovations from our schools and staff. Through this annual event, we want to showcase the continuous improvements made by our teachers in enhancing the learning experiences of our students. This event will, in particular, help parents to better understand the evolving education landscape and receive useful tips on partnering schools to support their child’s learning journey.”
The list of exhibition booths, sharing sessions and seminars is available at the MOE ExCEL Fest website. MOE ExCEL Fest 2014, “Valuing Every Child, Learning for Life”, will be held at the Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre, Halls 401-402, from 10am to 6pm. The first day of the event is for MOE staff and the second day is open to parents and members of the public. Admission is free. Sign up for the sharing sessions and seminars online. Registration is required as seats are limited.
Online registration is now open for the sharing sessions and workshops at the 3rd Mother Tongue Languages (MTL) Symposium, to be held at the Suntec Singapore Exhibition and Convention Centre, from 11:00am to 8:00pm on Saturday, 23 August 2014. Participants at the 12 sharing sessions and workshops can look forward to learning from experts and educators on using teaching aids and picture books to engage children in the learning of MTL. They can also pick up tips on choosing picture books that will interest children in language learning, as well as pointers on creating a supportive home environment for language learning.
Into its third year now, the MTL Symposium brings together Singapore schools and the community to share our collective efforts in promoting MTL through creative and engaging programmes. This year’s theme, “Flourish in the Wonderland of Our Languages”, underscores the importance of schools, community and parents working together to provide a supportive and vibrant language environment in helping children develop their MTL proficiency. The focus of the Symposium will be on the developmental years, from pre-school to lower primary levels, with an emphasis on the importance of the home language environment in language acquisition.
Targeted at educators from pre-school to institutes of higher learning and parents of young children, the Symposium will feature on-going efforts by schools, professionals and community groups in nurturing a love for the learning of MTL and culture in young children. It will also provide a platform for the exchange of ideas among educators and parents on our children’s learning of their MTL.
Besides sharing sessions and workshops, there will also be 40 exhibition booths by pre-school centres, schools and our partners showcasing innovative teaching methods and community programmes that help to nurture our children as active learners and proficient users of their MTL.
Children can participate in “The MTL Challenge” interactive activities at the booths and win attractive prizes. They will also be treated to all-day storytelling and performances in the MTL Wonderland. A list of activities and exhibitions at the MTL Symposium can be found at www.mtls.com.sg.
Admission to the Symposium is free. The first 4,000 visitors will also receive a goody bag. Registration for the sharing sessions and workshops is on a first-come- first-served basis. Members of the public can register at www.mtls.com.sg.
The annual Singapore Youth Festival (SYF) will take place in April and July. The month-long SYF Arts Presentation in April will feature close to 800 presentations staged by the various performing arts Co-Curricular Activities (CCAs). Students from primary and secondary schools, as well as junior colleges/Millennia Institute, will showcase their artistic expression, teamwork and love for the performing arts.
Members of the public are invited to the Arts Presentations to celebrate the efforts and support the artistic endeavours of our youth. The list of presentations is attached at Annex A. Admission is free.
SYF Celebrations will be held from 4 to 23 July 2014. A three-day event will be held at the Gardens by the Bay from 4 to 6 July 2014, and there will be satellite events at the Ang Mo Kio Public Library, as well as Jurong, Tampines and Woodlands Regional Libraries on 12 July 2014 from 2.00 to 4.00pm. The SYF Art Exhibition will be held at the LaSalle College of the Arts from 9 to 23 July 2014. Parents and the public are welcome to these events.
Since 2013, new platforms, such as the Open Call to schools for submission of activities and performances, have been introduced in SYF Celebrations to showcase more diverse art forms. This year, some of the Open Call activities include inviting students to create a visual interpretation of Gardens by the Bay in a medium of their choice, as well as wearable art costumes. Shortlisted works will be showcased on Instagram and/or at the onsite gallery at Gardens by the Bay. For more information on student submissions for each Open Call categories, please refer to Annex B.
SYF Celebrations complements the Arts Presentation, and emphasises MOE’s philosophy of student-centricity, enabling all talents to grow and develop to their full potential.
For more information on the SYF, please visit the SYF website at https://www.singaporeyouthfestival.sg or follow SYF on:
On 21 July this year, schools in Singapore marked the 50th anniversary of the 1964 racial riots. Racial Harmony Day (RHD), commemorated by schools on 21 July annually, has helped to promote inter-racial understanding among our students and is an important part of our national education. This year, our students will go a step further to advocate racial harmony among neighbours and friends.
This year’s RHD theme is “Harmony from the Heart”. It recognises that genuine and sincere harmony stems from the common values and aspirations we share, and the ties that bind us together. It can only be achieved if everyone takes the initiative to understand the different cultures, and inspire others to do the same.
The RHD celebrations are a reminder that promoting social cohesion and racial harmony requires collaborative efforts from our educators, students and stakeholders, including parents.
Political leaders from the Ministry of Education joined students to commemorate RHD at various schools today:Political Leader School Mr Heng Swee Keat
Minister for Education Elias Park Primary School Ms Indranee Rajah
Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Law & Ministry of Education Bartley Secondary School Ms Sim Ann
Minister of State, Ministry of Education & Ministry of Communications and Information Greenridge Primary School Mr Hawazi Daipi
Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Education & Ministry of Manpower Yishun Secondary School RHD Activities at Elias Park Primary School
As the Guest-of-Honour (GOH) at Elias Park Primary School (EPPS), Minister for Education Mr Heng Swee Keat noted that good relationships can only be built if we better understand those around us. He encouraged students to do their part to understand other cultures, and going beyond that, to also be advocates of racial harmony. He announced that, OnePeople.sg, a ground-up national body focused on building racial and religious harmony, has been working with MOE and our primary schools to engage all Primary 4 students in advocating racial harmony by providing them with Orange Ribbon kits. The Orange Ribbon has been adopted by OnePeople.sg as a symbol of racial harmony to promote values of respect, understanding, trust and friendship. Each Primary 4 student will make six orange ribbons from the materials in the kit. Students will wear one of the ribbons and give the other ribbons to someone of a different culture, who could be a schoolmate or a neighbour. The ribbon will be accompanied with a personal note encouraging the recipient to wear the ribbon, and to talk to a friend or a neighbour from a different race to find out more about his or her culture and practices.
Primary 4 students from EPPS became the school’s advocates of inter-cultural understanding and racial harmony, by playing host to children from two kindergartens in the Pasir Ris area. Some of the EPPS students served as SH@PE Guides to lead visitors through the Singapore Heritage @ Elias Park (SH@PE) Alive!, which comprises different learning centres with artefact displays, interactive exhibits and resource materials. These SH@PE Guides and dedicated parent volunteers helped their guests and the kindergarten children to gain insights into our nation’s rich heritage, understand our customs and traditions, be connected to the way of life of yesteryear, and appreciate the different cultures that make up Singapore. The Primary 4 EPPS students also presented the Orange Ribbons that they made to the children from the two kindergartens. Thereafter, they also shared about the importance of racial harmony and encouraged behaviours to demonstrate the intended values.RHD Activities at Bartley Secondary School
As the GOH, Ms Indranee Rajah, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Law & Ministry of Education, opened Bartley Secondary School (BSS)’s Hawker Culture Learning Gallery, which aims to enhance the teaching and learning of hawker culture and heritage. Schools from the S6 cluster, which include Bartley Secondary, Cedar Primary, Cedar Girls’ Secondary, CHIJ Our Lady of the Nativity, Peicai Secondary, St Gabriel’s Primary, St Gabriel’s Secondary, St Margaret’s Secondary, Teck Ghee Primary, Yangzheng Primary, Zhonghua Primary and Zhonghua Secondary, collaborated to put up the exhibition on how hawker culture promotes better inter-cultural understanding. Through sharing their knowledge and learning, students acted as advocates of inter-cultural understanding to their schoolmates and peers from other schools.
Visitors were interviewed by BSS students regarding their recollections of hawker food and its relevance to racial harmony and nation-building in Singapore. The interviews were conducted in front of a green screen and captured on video, later to be edited against a background of a hawker scene. These videos will be used as resources for students to deepen their learning about Singapore’s unique feature of racial harmony through the place that hawker centres play in our lives.RHD Activities at Greenridge Primary School
As the GOH, Ms Sim Ann, Minister of State, Ministry of Education & Ministry of Communications and Information, joined Greenridge Primary School (GRPS) students in commemorating RHD through playing traditional games and learning about other cultures. Primary 4 students acted as advocates of inter-cultural understanding, through giving an Orange Ribbon to Primary 3 students and explaining its meaning, and teaching them the traditional games, which promote the values of respect, understanding, trust and friendship.
These activities reinforced the learning from GRPS’s signature programme named Funtastick Harmony, a school-based programme comprising an array of activities across different themes, such as Food, Festivals, Music and Sports. Through this programme, students learn to work together (stick) in harmony through fun and meaningful common experiences. It promotes cross-cultural understanding and social cohesion amongst students of different races, reinforcing the civic values of respect, care, harmony, graciousness and public-spiritedness.RHD Activities at Yishun Secondary School
As the GOH, Mr Hawazi Daipi, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Education & Ministry of Manpower, joined Yishun Secondary School (YSS) in commemorating RHD with some of the pioneer generation members living in Chong Pang constituency. Students had earlier interviewed them to find out more about the racial riots that they had witnessed or lived through, their lives in the kampong, as well as how they continue to live out the kampong spirit in their current Housing Development Board estates. This effort was part of YSS’s collaboration with Chong Pang Community Centre, where students interacted with residents when they visited and helped them clean their homes. YSS screened the video that captured the process. This was a Values in Action (VIA) initiative that allowed students to appreciate the contributions of our pioneer generation in nation-building and encouraged students to extend their care and concern to the people around them.
Mr Hawazi launched a portal, Harmony from the Heart, a digital repository of photographs taken by students to represent their commitment towards racial harmony. This repository of photographs will also serve as a teaching and learning resource that teachers can use to engage students in oral discussion and to teach essay-writing.