If you don't know yet, we are a Mandarin-speaking family. Since Angel was born, we have been communicating to her more in Mandarin than English in the hope of building a strong foundation, and more importantly, a love for the mother tongue.
I guess it stems from my own love for the language and I wish to pass it down to my kids. Since I was in primary school, Chinese has always been my most-loved subject. Ok, Maths was a close second or sometimes on par. That was why although I chose to study mass comm, I decided to take up a minor in Chinese, and also why I was determined to teach at Berries when I was studying and even when I had a 9-5 job in a media agency.
In fact, when I first started A Happy Mum, I was half contemplating if I should make it a Chinese blog. *Do I hear a gasp?* However, even though I think and write better in Chinese, it might take me ages to type one post and I would run into trouble keeping up with the blog, so I decided to stick to English instead.
I think a language can define who we are and it is important for kids to learn to speak their mother tongue and for us as parents to keep passing down our cultural roots and heritage. It might sound bizarre to teach this when we were in Sweden but by age of three, we have taught Angel to recite 三字经 and by four, 弟子规. Yes, of course she can't recite the full text (I can't too!) but in my opinion, she can remember a good part of it already and I like to take the chance to teach her about Confucian values like filial piety and respect for elders.
When it comes to bedtime stories, I think it is very important for us to have a good mix of English and Chinese books too. A friend once commented that we have a huge collection of books in her library corner, which I seriously don't think so, but anyway when it comes to books, there is no such thing as too many, right? So, I like to let Angel pick her books to read every night and I am glad that every now and then, she will take a Chinese book and attempt to read it on her own. Even though it is based on memory more than word recognition for now.
The story talks about little tadpoles who hatch and start their journey in search of their Mama. Along the way, they meet different creatures in the pond and mistake them for their Mama. Each of the creatures replies with different answers, giving them an inkling of how their Mama looks like. While the tadpoles get confused and keep asking “Where’s my Mama? Are you my Mama?”, they begin to discover more about themselves along the way.
It's such a fun way to teach our kids about life cycles and how tadpoles grow up to be frogs, don't you think so?
Now, when Angel and I heard that come this September holidays, Paper Monkey Theatre would be holding a re-run of their sold out performance Looking for Mama 小蝌蚪找妈妈, you bet we jumped for joy. I can imagine how she would be able to relate to the story already!
With the addition of show-and-tell drama, handcrafted puppets and sing-along children’s songs, I think it will be such a fun learning experience for her.
|Images from Paper Monkey Theatre|
Date: 12th and 13th September (Friday and Saturday)
Time: 2:30pm & 7:30pm
Venue: Goodman Arts Centre (90 Goodman Road, Block B #01-05 Singapore 439053)
Ticket price: $15 each
Early bird promotion ($12 per ticket) runs from now to 20 August and you can book your tickets here.
小蝌蚪诞生了! 咦，怎么不见妈妈呢？小蝌蚪于是四处寻找妈妈。 但是，它不晓得妈妈是什么模样，怎么找呢？在途中遇到了大眼睛的金鱼、白肚皮的乌龟，可全都不是小蝌蚪的妈妈。它们告诉小蝌蚪，它的妈妈有一双大眼睛、白肚皮、四条腿，长得一点也不像黑漆漆的小蝌蚪。妈妈到底在哪里呀？ 快来和小蝌蚪一同寻找妈妈吧！
1. Performance is in Mandarin without English subtitles.
2. Duration is approx. 40 minutes without intermission.
3. Suitable for children aged between 5 and 7 years old.
4. Free seating.
5. No food and drinks are allowed.
6. For children below 5 years old, parental guidance is encouraged.
7. Tickets are required for all patrons for admission.
8. Latecomers are only allowed admission during suitable breaks if any.
Paper Monkey Theatre is a Singapore non-profit theatre company formed in April 2008. Helmed by well known puppeteer/playwright Benjamin Ho, it focus on providing quality drama programmes such as shadow puppet making workshops and theatre productions for children and families to entertain encourage artistic development and enrich learning experiences.
Now, if you are looking for activities to line up for the September holidays and are keen to let your child learn in Mandarin, this is something you might be keen to take part in! Yes, it's a giveaway!
FOUR tickets to the Looking for Mama 小蝌蚪找妈妈 public show performance on 12 Sept (Fri) at 7:30pm.
To participate, leave a comment in this blog post with your name and email address. Indicate on the Rafflecopter widget that you have done so and to increase your chances of winning, follow the rest of the steps. Please take part only if you are sure you can make it for the show!
Best of luck, everybody!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclosure: We have been invited by Paper Monkey Theatre to watch the public show performance of Looking for Mama. Give me a yell if you see me there, ok? All opinions are our own.