News / Nunn Road / 2006 / June 2006 (E56)

Dear parents,

During our school holidays, a group of nursery and kindergarten teachers came to visit us. Mr. Ong and I shared our experience and showed them around the compound. Some teachers were impressed with our work and environment. Later, we also joined them to visit another 2 kindergartens in Penang Island and 1 kindergarten in Sungai Petani, Kedah. It was a precious experience for me to learn how other centres are running their early child education. I was moved by their initiative and open- hearted sharing.

After the school break, the display hall was transformed to reflect a warm mood. Lanterns and candles were placed at the display corner to remind the children that the Lantern Festival is around the corner. At Nania we use candles for story time, birthdays and farewells. Candles, as lights on the Earth, are used to represent the lights in Heaven in our cultural activity. The sight of Mr. Sun, Mr. Moon and Mr. Star fill the children with wonder and awe. As Mr. Candle’s light graces their activity it brings a sense of solemnity and dignity to the children. The lantern walk during the Lantern Festival offers a moment of communion in the children’s hearts between the lights on earth and the lights in the heavens.

The children have painted the paper that they will use to make their lanterns for the Lantern Festival. We are practicing poems, finger games and songs during the ring time for the festival. At Nania, this festival brings together elements from the Chinese Moon Cake Festival and the Japanese Bon Festival.* Please mark the date 21st July (Friday) in your calendar. We hope to see parents and the children’s siblings on that evening. We will celebrate this festival in the Nania’s garden if it does not rain.

The children’s clothes sometimes get dirty when they paint on Monday mornings or play in the sandpit during outside playtime. Therefore wearing new cloths is not encouraged especially in the mornings.

Last year, we organized a Parents’ Meeting. Parents who attended the meeting appreciated the opportunity to meet each other as well as discuss issues related to child development and class experience with the class teachers. I would like to invite all parents for this year Parents’ Meeting to be held at Nania from 7.30pm on 13th July 2006.

Enclosed with this news letter is the parents contact list. Kindly inform me when there are any changes of mailing addresses or contact numbers in the future.

Teacher Thian

*Bon is one of Japan’s summer festivals and is a time when people make offerings of food and other things to their ancestors and pray for the happiness of their ancestor’s souls in the next world. It takes place from the 13th to 15th of August, and during this time the folk dance known as Bon Odori can be seen in cities, towns and villages all over Japan.

*Moon Cake Festival: A Mid-Autumn Festival, the third major festival of the Chinese calendar, is celebrated on the 15th day of the eighth month. This festival is also known as the Moon Cake Festival because a special kind of sweet cake prepared in the shape of the moon and filled with sesame seeds, ground lotus seeds and duck eggs is served as a delicacy.

Nania Lantern Festival

Date: 21st July 2006 (Friday)
Time: 6.30 pm
Venue: Taska Nania garden [indoor if raining]
6.30pm ~ 6.50 pm Children’s presentation(greeting, poems, songs)
6.50 pm ~7.00 pm Hokkien poem by staff, Bon dance
7.00 pm ~ 7.30 pm light snack
7.30 pm ~ 7.45 pm Lantern walk
7.45 pm Goodbye song

Coming events

Tanabata Celebration (Friday 7th July 2006)
This is the day of the year, according to a Chinese and Japanese folktale, when the Weaver Princes and the Cowherd can meet across the Milky Way to renew their love for each other. The children will make Tanzaku for this celebration. Tanzuka and other ornaments are hung on a bamboo branch during tanabata and placed in the house as a way of entreating better things to come.

Lantern Festival (Friday 21st July 2006)
On that day, children will be going home early (after lunch at 12:15pm). Later, they will come back to Nania for the Lantern Festival with their parents and siblings after dinner at 6.30pm. Enclosed with this news letter are the details and a song sheet for the festival.

Parents’ Meeting Evening (13th July 2006)
The meeting is open to all parents of the English class students. It will start at 7.30pm and we plan to end by 9.00pm. Kindly make arrangements for your children’s care.

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