Why the MAP Programme at Josiah Works for me!
Article by Glynisia Yeo, N2-2018 Josiah Parent.
For someone who was heavily involved in music, dance and drama activities since Primary School, I was naturally thrilled when Josiah announced the introduction of the Musical Arts Programme (MAP) in 2016. This programme includes Voice, Dance, Chinese Speech & Drama, Arts and Music Appreciation, and is integrated into the school curriculum for children in Nursery 1 to Kindergarten 2.
The MAP initiative aims to immerse the children into the colourful world of music and creative arts at an early age. There is a wide range of genres that the kids explore, including classical numbers (for example,The Carnival of the Animalsby Saint-Seans), ethnic dance, folk music, and even contemporary musicals such as The Greatest Showman.
Although the development of academic learning skills is an important one in early school years, I believe it is equally vital for young minds to expand their knowledge and experiences of the world through music, song and dance, rather than through digital means alone.
What Happens at a MAP Recital?
As a parent of a Nursery-going child, I must admit that one of my highlights of the year is to attend the MAP Recital which typically takes place twice annually. The event is a showcase of everything that the children have been taught that particular semester and it is a day the teachers, students and parents look forward to all year! Most of the kids are also excited and eager to perform.
There was one year, the Kindergarten 1 children performed a Chinese Speech & Drama item and they left me thoroughly impressed by the children’s clear diction of the Mandarin phrases, coupled with their “cool confidence” while staying in character. It was the mastery of the language which seemed to flow so seamlessly from these lips that left me speechless. To be honest, I could not understand what some of the kids were saying due to my limited Chinese vocabulary, and I was personally embarrassed. But overall, it was a delightful and humbling experience.
Of course, there are the occasional out-of-sync dance steps, forgotten lines and meltdowns. But for a little human to stand before a “crowd” of adults is no mean feat, much less having to remember the wealth of lyrics, lines and movements involved.
As part of the extended community of Josiah, this is where we as parents play a vital role in partnering the school. We encourage, clap, and cheer the kids on even when mini hiccups surface during the recital. We help to create and nurture an environment that develops confidence among our children and their peers by smiling, cheering, and waving appreciation. Together, we celebrate a job well done and more importantly, we celebrate small successes!
It is a welcoming sight to watch the young ones happily belting out songs they’ve learnt, showing off their dance moves with so much gusto (Zumba during one semester), and reciting poetry so articulately.
Art & Craft Display
Apart from the performance segment, there is also a mini exhibition of all the children’s artwork from the school term. It is always a joy to see the little ones tugging at their parents and bringing them personally to view their own masterpieces with pride and joy.
These craftworks tie in with the term’s MAP theme, and encapsulate what each child has learnt. I also appreciate the intricacies involved in creating a “masterpiece”, and the techniques used to achieve a particular intended effect. For example, there was one semester where children created an artwork using paint and leaves. The result was a very beautiful mix of colours and patterns all melding into one.
I wish to make special mention to Miss Ela and Ms Syarah for your great work among our kids! Thank you for making MAP classes so fun and exciting for the kids!
Thank you, Josiah, for helping to inculcate a love for the creative arts at a young age. We have seen the value of MAP classes in the lives of our young ones, and we hope that their love for the arts will only grow with time as they remember their whimsical MAP adventures with Josiah!
Here are some of the sweet, precious and proud-of-you moments we’ve managed to capture on camera!
What an epic year it has been for us! Looking forward to even greater things to come this 2019 together with YOU 🙂
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