This Saturday is Singapore’s 49th National Day! This is Hannah’s second year celebrating our National Day. (You could refer here for last year’s activities.) We were excited to have some fun with other homeschool friends from our Mandarin co-op while learning about National Day.
Learning about Singapore Flag in Mandarin
We learned elements of the Singapore flag in Mandarin. For instance:
Singapore = 新加坡 (Xīnjiāpō)
Crescent = 新月 (xīn yuè)
Stars = 星星 (xīngxīng)
National Day = 国庆日 (guóqìng rì)
Get those bodies moving: crescent and star jumps
We did a little stretching with our bodies to make a crescent and doing star jumps. Hopefully, these hands-on activities help our little ones remember their shapes in Mandarin better. 🙂
Toilet Paper Roll Craft: Fireworks
I was looking for a craft where the kids could create an art that’s not too messy, requires little preparation and suitable for the younger crowd. I came across this activity via The CentSible Family.
- Cut one edge of the toilet paper roll into slits.
- Open the slits like a flower or octopus.
- Dip the roll into paint and you’ve got your fireworks!
It’s so simple! I bought red glitter glue from Daiso to create a glittery effect. I mixed a little water to the glue to make it more runny. We also tried using finger paint or any normal paint. Works as well, but without the glitter.
Singapore’s Legends and Folktales
Now at three, Hannah’s becoming an inquisitive little being. Lately, she has been asking the reason behind some of the street names. Like, “Why is Redhill called Redhill?” This sparked an idea to share with her some of Singapore’s folktales as an extension of our National Day activities.
Why is Redhill called Redhill?
Singapore, then a fishing village, was plagued by many swordfish. The villagers were often attacked by these swordfish and that caused the Sultan to be deeply troubled, for they know not what to do. Then one day, a little boy approached the Sultan with a plan: barricade the affected areas with a row thick banana tree trunks. So whenever the a swordfish tries to attack, its long, sharp bill would get stuck on the banana tree trucks.
The boy’s plan worked, and the villagers rejoiced at the his wisdom and ingenious plan. The Sultan jealous over the boy’s popularity and fearing that he would be dethroned, he got his army to kill the boy who lived on top of a hill. Sadly, the boy was killed and his blood covered the hill.
There are some children’s books on Singapore’s legends which can be borrowed from the libraries:
- Asian Favourite Stories, Singapore by Leon Comber
- The Lion City retold by Mohamad Salmi
- Singapore’s Swordfish Attach retold by Mohamad Salmi
- Sisters’ Island retold by Mohamad Salmi
Alternatively, you could read about them via the Remember Singapore blog. It’s my go-to website if I’m looking for things relating to Singapore’s history!
National Day Parade (NDP) Sing-a-long
I think it’s a wonderful idea that the organising committee has the NDP Songs put up on their website. Hannah loves singing and dancing to “Chan Mali Chan”. Now, we can sing along to the songs the entire week!