Jun 13, 2017

5 Top Picks of Children's Season Singapore 2017


My favourite festival for kids is back this June School Holidays so if you only have time to let your kids do one thing this holiday period, attending the events at Children's Season Singapore 2017 will be it.

Jointly presented by the National Heritage Board (NHB) and Museum Roundtable (MR), the highly anticipated annual festival for children will be taking on a new direction this year by going beyond museums, heritage and culture, to include interests such as music, performing arts and nature.

As part of its 10th edition - yes, it's 10 years old! - Children’s Season Singapore will see first-time partners – the Esplanade, Singapore Chinese Orchestra, Wildlife Reserves Singapore and Singapore Tyler Print Institute (STPI), joining other NHB and MR museums to present a host of wide-ranging programmes and exhibitions. Expect a range of kid-centric programmes and engaging family activities that will inspire, engage and educate!

In fact, the entire Children's Season Singapore 2017 programme will see more than 120 exhibitions, programmes and activities spread across 29 partners. Definitely spoilt for choice! Of course, the usual perennial faves like the National Museum of Singapore continues to have kid-friendly activities, including a bouncy bumboat inflatable and a soft netting of an inverted dome where visitors will be able to lie down to observe the beauty of the National Museum’s iconic stained glass dome.

But I highly suspect that kids will be flocking to the Giant snoozing at the basement where they will get the chance to doodle away on his body!

Truth is, there are actually plenty of other locations which offer Children's Season Singapore activities as well. So over one weekend, I gathered the monkies and visited 3 such locations. Here was what we got up to:

Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum

With 20 zones spread over two floors, the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum traces the history of life on earth - from the microscopic to the enormous, and from the awkward to the awesome. Of course, the sauropod dinosaur fossils from the Jurassic period form the highlight of the museum. The adult dinosaurs, measuring 24m and 27m respectively, have been nicknamed Apollonia and Prince, while the baby dinosaur called Twinky is 12m long.

There were plenty of natural history specimens to pique the monkies' interest but the greatest one of all belonged to the skeleton of a sperm whale which was found dead off Jurong Island on 10 July 2015.

Nicknamed as the 'Jubilee Whale' because it was found during our SG50 year, it was de-fleshed and its bones were carefully treated and pieced back together. And the entire process can be viewed as a video at the museum's first temporary exhibition, Out of the Water - in time for Children's Season Singapore 2017!

Stories help us share our experiences and the things we have learnt with our friends, families, and even the next generation. Along the way, these stories may have been mixed with ;misunderstandings' which gave rise to myths... and these probably laid the foundations that shaped the stories of mermaids, sea-dwelling monsters and other magical animals.

At the exhibition, the monkies got to explore myths and legends from Singapore and beyond in a different, new light and experience them in a new way. It was an eye-opener for them, finding out which bits were just plain fantasy, and the parts that actually happened in real life!

And if your kids wish to get all crafty with their hands (like mine), then be sure to head to the museum's main lobby for the Biodiversity Craft sessions!

Happening only on weekends in June 2017, the session is priced at $8 per child (or $5 for LKCNHM Members, Ticket Holders, NUS Staff & Students).

Kids will be able to learn more about biodiversity, why it is important, and how they can help protect our world's biodiversity through a series of brain games and activities.

To top it off, kids can create their own form of biodiversity with craft materials - something that Ale was only too keen to complete!

Singapore Philatelic Museum

From now until October 2017, parents and kids can enter the fantastical realm of fairy tales through beautiful stamps from all over the world through the museum's A Little Magic exhibition! I am sure the magical stories - The Little Mermaid, Little Red Riding Hood, The Ugly Duckling, etc - woven by the likes of Hans Christian Andersen, the Brothers Grimm, and Charles Perrault are familiar to us. Through interactive and hands-on exhibits, kids will be able to relive the magic of these timeless tales.

Or if your kids are like my monkies, they will pounce on the chance to go on the Little Red Riding Hood Activity Trail which will bring them on a quest to hunt for clues in the galleries. At the end of it all, they got to redeem a special prize for their efforts.

If you are there on a weekend, expect plenty of other kid-friendly activities happening in the museum as well!

Oh and while you are there, do not miss the Precious Eggs: Of Art, Beauty and Culture exhibition too.

Featuring colourfully decorated quail, chicken, duck, goose, swan and ostrich eggs, there are also eggs crafted of precious and enamelled metals, glass, porcelain, wax, crystal, marble, stone, wood, reindeer horn, cardboard, and papier-mâché.  Also on show is a series of artists’ eggs, a set of commissioned sculptures to showcase the works of Liechtenstein’s leading artists.

The monkies' fave activity of the lot though, was Mother Goose’s Egg-citing Craft where they learnt about pysanka - Ukrainian Easter eggs which are decorated with traditional Ukrainian folk designs using a wax-resist method.

I think being able to decorate a hard-boiled egg and bringing it home definitely helped!

Asian Civilisations Museum

This June School Holidays, kids get to explore the oceans every Friday (16 & 23 June 2017)! As part of the museum's Fun-tastic Fridays programme, visitors will be able to dive into the deep through its galleries, make their own special sea animals, listen to intriguing stories and watch exciting performances!

If you are at the museum at 3pm, be sure to catch the Story Whisperer: Tales from the Sea segment where kids will be able to go on a 30-minute storytelling tour and discover fishy tales from Asian folklore.

The sea theme ties in with ACM's newest exhibition, Ghost Nets of the Ocean, a spectacular marine-themed exhibition where fish, turtles, squid, and jellyfish have made from ocean debris, including abandoned fishing nets and recycled plastics. These colourful woven sculptures show the peoples connections to the sea, and strive to generate awareness of ocean pollution, recycling, and conservation of the marine environment.

MOE Heritage Centre

If you have ever wondered what school was like for students living on islands around Singapore, then the Let’s Go Old School!: Exploration Trail will be an interesting experience! Students used to save their money by buying stamps and sticking them on stamp cards in the 1970s and kids will be able to do just that on the trail by picking up an activity card and stamping their way through the galleries as they learn more about the Singapore Education Story! Complete the trail and they will be rewarded with a special old-school momento too!

Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay

Esplanade joins Children’s Season Singapore as a first time partner venue with two kid-centric events:

1. Precious Time!
Date & Time: 1 – 20 June | 11.00am – 6.00pm (Closed from 2.00pm – 3.00pm)
Venue: Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, PIP’s PLAYbox (Level 4)

This Father’s Day, make some time and spend it with a loved one. Using materials such as paper, foam and yarn, stretch your creative muscles and make a pocket watch for that special someone.

2. Holiday Fun: Rainbows
Date & Time: 1 – 20 June | 11.00am – 6.00pm (Closed from 2.00pm – 3.00pm)
Venue: Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, PIP’s PLAYbox (Level 4)

What better way to appreciate the beautiful and natural phenomenon of a rainbow than to make your very own rainbow cloud with fun and recyclable materials. Take your rainbow cloud with you when you travel and “smile” back at the sky the next time you spot a rainbow!

BUT no matter which venue you head to during Children's Season Singapore 2017, there is ONE activity that you MUST remember to accomplish.

Pick up a copy of the Children’s Season Passport* and collect stamps at various venues.

All you have to do is to visit THREE venues and stamp your passport at the various embossing stations (except Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, which will use ink stamps as a substitute).

Snap a photo of all 3 stamps in the Passport and visit www.museums.com.sg/cs17/stamp-n-win to submit your entry. Prizes include a photoshoot package, dining vouchers, bookstore vouchers and even an electric scooter! All winners will be announced on 30 June 2017, and is limited to one entry per participant.

Limited quantities of the passports available at participating venues. *While stocks last.

But HURRY, because two weekends are all that is left of Children's Season Singapore 2017 so you have to be quick if you wish to bring your kids down for its kid-friendly activities... and collect stamps in your Passport!

Useful Information

27 May – 25 June 2017
Various venues
Website: www.museums.com.sg/cs17


Out of the Water
Date & Time: 11 Mar – 30 Sep | 10am to 7pm
Venue: Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, Level 1M
Admission charges apply.

Biodiversity Craft
Date & Time:  17, 18, 24 & 25 June | 11am to 3pm
Venue: Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, Lobby
Cost: $8 (Non-members) | $5 (LKCNHM Members, Ticket Holders, NUS Staff & Students)

Free Admission for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents

A Little Magic Exhibition
Date & Time: From 27 May to Oct | 10am  to 7pm
Venue: Atrium, Level 1

Free Admission for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (Applies to Permanent Galleries only)

Ghost Nets of the Ocean - Au Karem ira Lamar Lu Voices for the sea from Australia’s Torres Strait Islanders

Date & Time: 1 Jun to 6 Aug | 10am to 7pm

FUN-tastic Fridays: Ghost Nets of The Ocean
Date & Time: 16 & 23 Jun | 12pm to 5pm


Let’s Go Old School!: Exploration Trail
Date & Time: 29 May - 23 June | 9.30am to 5pm
Location: Maxwell Auditorium
Free admission, no registration required


Precious Time!
Date & Time: 1 – 20 June | 11am to 6pm (Closed from 2pm – 3pm)
Venue: Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, PIP’s PLAYbox (Level 4)

Holiday Fun: Rainbows
Date & Time: 1 – 20 June | 11am to 6pm (Closed from 2pm – 3pm)
Venue: Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, PIP’s PLAYbox (Level 4)

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