10 reasons why playing sport is important for children

Playing sport is a very important part of the Shaws curriculum.

Here are 10 reasons why we play sport at Shaws Preschool.

  1. Building confidence – Playing sport helps children to trust their own abilities and push  themselves to get better. As they do this, their confidence and self esteem grow.
  2. Problem solving – Playing sports forces children to think on the spot and make split-second a decision. This requires quick thinking and problem solving skills.
  3. Leadership – Children learn about  responsibility and the role they play in a team. Leadership is not always who is leading, but it is about being accountable for one’s actions in a team.
  4. Teamwork – Playing sport teaches children about teamwork and cooperating with others. They learn to interact with children with different strengths, and working towards a common goal.
  5. Discipline – Children learn to maintain discipline, be it mental, physical or tactical. In sport, children are required to follow a set of rules, and accept decisions made by the coach.
  6. Resilience – Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity or failure. Sport gives children plenty of opportunity to build resilience as they try to get better at the different sport skills.
  7. Dealing with failure, as well as success – In most things in life, there is a winner and a loser. Through sport, children learn sportsmanship. They learn to accept and cope with loss, rather than feeling defeated. Though sport, children learn that it is ok to lose. The important part is to get back up and to try again.
  8. Brain development – There is plenty of research which links sport to children’s brain development. The constant movement stimulates the brain, which in turns stimulates the mind. There is a positive correlation between sport performance and academic ability.
  9. Working those growing muscles – Sports of course is great for exercising those growing muscles.
  10. Healthy habits – Exercise is important for everyone. Sport provides a fun way for children to keep healthy.

These are some of the many reasons we believe that sport is so important for children’s development.


Shaws Preschools offer Multisport Sports classes twice a week to all children, as part of our curriculum (at no additional charge). Sports classes are run by Shaws Little League
The sports include – soccer, basketball, athletics, volleyball, tennis, golf, baseball, rugby, hockey and cricket.

Why is water confidence important for young children?

The Shaws Preschool curriculum places a strong emphasis on building confident children. This includes confidence in the water with our Shaws Water Confidence Programme.

We have our very own private swimming pool located at our Lorong Chuan campus, so children enrolled in our three campuses in Braddell/Serangoon Gardens are able to enjoy free Shaws Water Confidence classes as part of our curriculum.


Why do we believe water confidence is important?

Before learning to swim, it is important that children feel confident and capable in the water. This includes learning to stay afloat, learning to jump safely in the water, and to know what to do when they are in trouble in the water. Once a child builds confidence in the water, learning to swim is a piece of cake!


Aside from confidence, experiences in the water are great for brain development. When children are in the water, they are in an environment full of complex sensations. This stimulates the growth of connections between neurons in the brain, and this is great for brain development. It may sound far fetched, but yes, this does have correlation to children’s cognitive abilities as they grow!

But hey, at Shaws, we believe that learning must be fun! So aside from all the benefits above, the children are having fun!


Note – Shaws Water Confidence classes are at no extra charge at Shaws Lorong Chuan, Shaws Carmichael, and Shaws Braddell. Lessons are held in our private pool at our Lorong Chuan campus.


6 tips for stress-free potty training

Toilet training can often be a source of stress for Mums and Dads, and children too! Our advise is… relax, everyone eventually learns to use the toilet.

The average age for toilet training is three, and thats just the average. Toilet train only when you see signs that your  child is ready for toilet training.

When you pick the right time, it is fast and almost stress free.


Once your child is ready to be potty trained, here are some tips to make the process less stressful for both you and your child.

  1. Ditch the diapers and motivate your child with cool underwear! This is always a hit!
  2. Buy the right equipment. Whether you are using a potty or a child’s toilet seat, ensure it is comfortable for your child. You may even want to let your child pick it out.
  3. Set up a potty schedule, where you take your child to the toilet/potty every hour and a half, then every two hours.
  4. Celebrate triumphs! Make a song and dance for every time your child does a wee in the potty!
  5. Choose a time when you are able to potty train your child continuously over a few days. Don’t choose times when you have to be out of the house for long periods of time. Try and keep it as consistent as you can.
  6. Work with your child’s preschool on all you are doing at home, so they can do the same at school. If your child does have “accidents” at school and requires your child to wear diapers, suggest pull-ups for your child.


Remember, if your child resists, do consider leaving the toilet training for a while and trying again some time later. It is not meant to be stressful for you or your child.








5 signs that my child is ready for potty training

There is no specific age to toilet train a child. Instead, look out for signs that your child is ready to give it a go. Now remember, no two children are alike. So if your child resists, do consider leaving it for a little while, and try again some time later.

To help make the process less stressful for both you and your child, here are 5 signs that may indicate your child is ready for toilet training.


  1. Not wanting to stay in a wet diaper. Your child may pull or tug at their wet/soiled diaper to try and get it off.
  2. Is interested in using the toilet or going to the toilet
  3. Has a dry diaper for longer than usual – this shows that he/ she is able to hold their wee in his/her bladder
  4. Telling you (with words or actions) that they need to pee or poo before the do it in their diaper
  5. Begins to dislike wearing a diaper at all

Not all these signs need to be present, but if any of them are, it may indicate your child is ready to start toilet training.

How to make potty training less stressful


Nurturing confident speakers

Shaws Preschool prides itself in nurturing confident children. One of the areas of confidence our children are strong in is the ability to stand up and speak confidently. We have many areas in our curriculum that support this, one of which is Show and Tell, which starts as early as in the Pre-Nursery class.

Show and Tell is great for confidence building, as not only do the children get a chance to show off their “prized possessions”, it gives the children experiences in public speaking.

The children learn that they need to speak loudly and clearly to gain the attention of their audience.

They also learn how to communicate through body language.  They learn to answer questions posed on their topic, clearly and to the point. All within the safe environment of their classroom and friends.

By the time the children graduate in Kindergarten Two, they would have gained over fours years of experience in Show and Tell. They are able to stand up with confidence, and share a topic clearly and with confidence.

In fact, we sometimes have to set a timer for Show and Tell in Kindergarten Two, as the children are confidently able to go on and on!

My child won’t eat! What do I do?

Some parents are amazed when we tell them how much their child eats at school. “Are you sure?” they ask. “My child barely eats at home!”

Here are 5 tips we have for parents…

1. Serve meals when your child is hungry! Don’t give your child a big snack, and then expect him or her to eat a full meal. They may simply not be hungry.  At preschool, after a morning of stimulation, the children are starving and chop down their food eagerly.

2. Don’t offer an alternative right away. Some parents have a bottle of milk waiting for the child if they don’t eat their meal. Your child knows this, and there is no motivation to fill their tummies.

3. Cook food your child will enjoy. If they are trying new foods, include this with food you know they like.

4. Eating is an experience not just for nutrition. Eat as a family or in a group. This makes meal time more enjoyable for the children. At school, the children enjoy eating snack and lunch in a group, chatting with their friends.


5. Allow them to be part of the preparation of the food. Of course not all the time, but sometimes let them be involved in simple tasks like chopping the vegetables, or even serving the food.





“No! No! No!” – How do I deal with my child through the “no’ phase?

A common question we get is – How do I deal with my child through the “no” phase, which typically is when they are around 2 years old.

Here’s what we do at school.

1. Children at during this stage want independence and control of their environment. We give them the opportunity to have this by allowing them to do things for themselves – such as putting on their shoes and wiping up the table after snack time. This gives them the satisfaction of being able to compete a task.

2. Where possible, we give them choices. During activity time, we set up many activities for them to choose from. They can choose which activity to work on.

3. We avoid using the word “no” or “don’t” in the classroom. For example, instead of “no running”, we say “walk slowly”.

4. Routine routine routine! Routine provides children with security – they know what is going to happen next. Our daily classroom schdule is build around a similar daily routine.

We hope this helps. But do remind yourselves that this phase is part of growing up, full of learning experiences for your child, including learning right from wrong. And we promise you it does end as some stage… at least before college 😉





Dough play is great for children. How about making your own!

Dough play is a great activity to build fine motor skills to prepare children’s little muscles for writing in later years. At Shaws Preschool, there is dough play almost every day. We don’t just play with dough, we also make our own dough!

Here’s the recipe if you wish to make your own dough at home

What you need…
2 cups flour
¾ cup salt
4 tsp cream of tartar
2 cups lukewarm water
2 tablespoons oil
Coloring or smells (optional)

Make it…
Let the children mix all the ingredients together. They can have a play with it during this stage. Once the children are done mixing, cook it over a medium heat until the dough has thickened slightly. You have your dough!



1. In Singapore’s humid climate, we store the dough in the fridge at the end of the day, or over the weekend, to keep it fresh.
2. If your child tends to put things in his/her mouth, add more salt to flour ratio – this makes the dough taste terrible and your child will be less likely to put it in his/her mouth after the first attempt!


Is my child ready for preschool?

Is my child is ready for preschool?

shaws preschool learning play preschool

As parents, we are excited to give our children as many experiences as we can. One milestone experience is going to preschool!

However, when is your child ready for preschool?

There is no checklist to complete, and not all children develop at the same pace. So how do we know?

It is also important to note that preschool is different from one-hour enrichment programmes. The enrichment programmes are often crammed with stimulating activities. Preschool experiences on the other hand are about social and emotional experiences, developmentally appropriate activities to suit each individual child, providing a nurturing and safe environment to learn and to keep trying, and the introduction to the notion that learning is fun!

In Singapore, most preschools take in children from 18months to 6 years old. Most children start preschool between 18 months to 2 years old. To know when your child is ready, here are some questions to ask yourself…

Is your child able to express himself to unfamiliar peopleshaws preschool learning play preschool

As parents we can read out child’s needs without them having to express themselves. At preschool on the other
hand, it is important that your child is able to get his basic needs and feelings across to teachers. This expression need not be verbal. It can be by pointing, through baby talk, or even facial expressions. What is important is that he is willing to attempt to communicate.

Is your child able to walk?

For most preschools in Singapore, being able to walk is a requirement. In a preshool classroom there will be other children around. It is important that your child is able to walk and keep steady – bumping around etc. during music time, walking while carrying items.

Does your child attempt independent activities at home?

These could be simple things such as wanting to set the table, or wanting to put their shoes on. These are little signs that your child is ready to start preschool.

Is your child curious about the world?

For children who can talk, this would include asking lots of questions. For children who are not talking yet, it could be wanting to touch things around them, or they like trying new things.

Is your child healthy?

Starting school will mean being with other children. Children who start school usually will catch bugs as they build their immune system. So yes, your child will fall ill. For the health of your child as well as the other children in the class, your child should be fit and healthy when he starts preschool.

Does your child ask to go to school?

An obvious indication… for children who can talk, does your child ask to go to school? Or if you have an older child, does your child indicate that they want to go to school just like their older sister or brother.

shaws preschool learning play preschool

Mum and Dad – this one is for you! Are you ready for your child to attend preschool?

Your little baby is growing up and ready for school. It is important that you choose a preschool that is just right for you, somewhere you trust with your precious baby. It is also important that parents keep their anxieties in check when in front of their child, as children can pick up on this. You can find more on tips for starting preschool here.


shaws preschool learning play preschool


“I am in preschool! I am not build to keep still, keep my hands to myself, take turns, be patient, stand in line or keep quiet all of the time. I need motion, novelty, adventure, and to engage the world with may whole body. Let me PLAY! Trust me, I am learning!” – Author unknown.


Preparing your child for the first day of preschool

Starting preschool is a huge milestone for both children and parents. Here are some handy tips for preparing your child for their first day…

Heading to preschool with Dad!


Pick a preschool you trust

You are leaving your precious child under the care of a team of preschool teachers  – be sure you trust them!

Talk to your child about starting preschool

Talk your child through what the first day of preschool will be like, including the many fun things they will be doing at preschool, for example playing in the playground. Mentally prepare them for this new and exciting experience.

Take your child to visit the preschool

This will allow your child to become familiar with the surroundings, and maybe even a few faces around the preschool. At Shaws Preschool, we encourage new children to come and play in the playground to familiarise them with the environment.

at preschool with mum shaws preschool

Talk to the Principal and teachers about your child

Before your child starts preschool, or at least on the first day, talk to the Principal and teachers about your child. Don’t forget to include anything special about your child, for example the words your child uses to go to the toilet, or when they are hungry. Also include information about your child’s likes and dislikes.

Pack something familiar in your child’s bag

This will make the transition from home to school a little easier with something that can comfort them. It can be anything from a favourite toy, to a little pillow.

Two-way feedback

The preschool should provide you with feedback with how your child is doing. However don’t forget to give the school feedback too! It is a new experience so share how your child is at home in the first few days and how he or she is coping, be it positive or negative.

mum and child at preschool

Be prepared for tears

Separation anxiety is normal for children, so do be prepared for tears when you leave your child. At Shaws Preschool, parents usually leave two or three days after the child starts preschool (however this is not always the case as each child settles in differently).  What is important is that the teachers are able to settle your child within a few minutes after you leave.

Parents have to be prepared for the separation too!

A child starting preschool is a new experience for parents too! So don’t forget to prepare yourselves too. Do prepare yourselves for the separation anxiety, and remember to stay positive so your child does not pick up on your anxiety. Do reassure your child that you will be back to him or her up and the end of the day. When saying goodbye, do it quickly. Don’t linger or play peek-a-boo as this will only make the separation a lot harder for your child. Trust the Principal and teachers – they have years of experience settling in hundreds of children. If you have dropped off your child and are anxious about how they are doing, pick up the phone and call us anytime. We will give you an on-the-spot update of how your child is doing.

preschool with dad shaws

Starting preschool is a new and exciting experience. Talk to our Principals or teachers at any time if you are unsure. And don’t forget to enjoy the experience while you can… because in no time, it will be preschool graduation!

Shaws Preschool Graduation 2017


“You’re off to great places. Today is your first day! Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way!” – Dr Seuss