Literacy@Home Starter Kit
“I want to give my 3 year old a head-start in learning how to read, but I don’t want to have to send him to tuition at such a young age!”
“My boy is 5, going 6, and he still doesn’t know many letters of the alphabet, much less read any words. How can I help him?!”
“Work, housework, and all my children need me… I can only spend 15 minutes a day of quality time with my 4 year old. How can I make the most of this time?”
Why Anchors Aweigh?
These are all thoughts that we have heard from fellow parents - colleagues, friends and precious caregivers we have interacted with in our programmes.
I have to also confess a personal challenge - my sons spend most of their free time watching random Youtube videos or playing games on the iPad. I feel guilty about it but I want to get my work done first! And by the time my work is finished, I am too tired to think of activities and to get all the materials needed for some hands-on educational activities.
All these thoughts, combined with our experience with a stay home mum, Yen, a year ago, led us to develop this new pilot programme “Anchors Aweigh!” to help parents that want to build their children’s reading foundations.
What is 'Anchors Aweigh'?
“Anchors Aweigh!” is a first-of-its-kind programme in Singapore, coupling a multi-use kit with a series of guidance videos for parents or caregivers to build the reading foundations of 3-6 year olds. To develop this, we applied our learnings from the Building Blocks programme which we had run for close to 590 parents of toddlers in Singapore - read more about the parents’ positive experiences here!
“Anchors Aweigh!” launches off with a series of easy-to-understand videos covering 4 core pre-reading skills that parents can develop in their children. We will provide more follow-on content of easy how-to’s that all caregivers can refer to. Parents that purchase or (for low-income families) receive our “Anchors Aweigh!” Discovery or Adventurer kits will have ready materials they can use as well as exclusive video content.
If this is well received, we hope to sail into Phase 2, where we will create a series of high quality educational videos for children. This engaging content will aim to expose them to the alphabet, phonics and/or sight words, as well as captivating stories that teach important values like friendship, empathy and sharing!
Fun Tidbit #1 : “Anchors aweigh!” is the phrase that sailors call out after they have lifted all the anchors on a ship clear of the sea’s bottom, and the ship is free to set sail on a new voyage. Our Learning Vessels team thought that this was such an apt name for this new programme, which aims to help parents and caregivers of 3-6 year olds take off on an exciting journey of learning - learning to read, in this case!
Fun Tidbit #2: The phrase is also often mis-spelled as “anchors away” where “away” is a homophone (a word with the same pronunciation as another but has a different spelling and meaning) of “aweigh”. Weigh in this case is being employed in its old-fashioned, rarely-used meaning of “to raise or hoist”. What an intriguing example of how complex the English language can be! But don’t worry, in our “Anchors Aweigh!” programme, we will start with an easy-to-understand, step-by-step explanation of how you can gradually build your child’s foundations for English reading.