Do you know the recommended physical activity and screen time for your child’s age group? Recently, The Straits Times published an article detailing the 24-hour activity guidelines for young children pertaining to physical activity, sedentary behaviour, sleep and diet. Chinese New Year is not just a festival for eating delicious food, it is also a good opportunity to engage in some outdoor activities with your child. In this post, we have suggested 5 activities, each inspired by a Chinese New Year greeting. We have also incorporated tips for bilingual living this festive season!
Jog and spot different plants and animals on the way!
1. “步步”高升: Jogging at a park connector
Singapore has an extensive Park Connector Network (PCN) that offers a scenic route for one to engage with the nature. Why not go for a light jog with your child to kick start the new year? The health benefits of running for children are tremendous: not only are they found to have strong muscles and bones, they also face less risk of obesity.
Throughout the run, you can engage your child by pointing at the different objects in the neighbourhood and naming them in both English and Mandarin; some phrases include “树” (tree), “公园” (park), and “慢跑” (jogging). This serves to provide them with the visual cues to these words, helping them to remember them better! Put on your running shoes today, and burn some calories from all those pineapple tarts!
Some recommendations of parks and PCNs can be found *here*.
Kite-flying helps in teaching patience and perseverance too.
2. 一帆“风”顺: Kite-flying at Marina Barrage
If the weather is nice, why not go fly a kite with your children? Kite-flying is a healthy and active way to engage your child in some form of exercise, and for you to spend some quality time together. Of course, don’t forget to use phrases like “放风筝” (kite-flying), “掌握风向”(assess the wind direction) “放线”(let out the line) and “收线” (reel it in) during the activity to make it an even more educational session.
The Green Roof in Marina Barrage is open from 8AM to 9PM from Mondays to Thursdays, and 8AM to 10PM during weekends and public holidays. Be sure to call up the Information Counter before proceeding to avoid disappointment as the Green Roof may be temporarily closed when capacity limit is reached.
Point out our National Flower to your child!
3. 富贵“花”开: Picnic at Singapore Botanic Gardens
As a garden city, Singapore Botanic Gardens is a must-see for nature lovers. With over 150 years of history, this UNESCO World Heritage Site houses thousands of plant varieties. As you bask in the beauty of nature and explore the forest habitats with your children, this also serves as a perfect opportunity for you to introduce some of the plants to them, such as “兰花” (orchid), “池塘” (pond), and “雨林” (rainforest)! You can also take the chance to pack a nice and healthy picnic basket with your children beforehand, such as “面包” (bread), “三明治” (sandwich), and “饮料” (drinks)!
Spot Pasha and Keysa, the sibling duo at the Singapore Zoo. Photo: Singapore Zoological Gardens.
4. “虎虎”生风: A day at the Singapore Zoo
With the year of the tiger approaching, why not see some real tigers? The Singapore Zoo is a haven for wondrous wildlife, with over 2800 animals from 300 species! As you stroll through the zoo with your children and encounter its inhabitants, take the chance to introduce the different animals to them! Be it the gigantic “大象” (elephant), or the black-and-white “斑马” (zebra); the cheeky “猴子” (monkey), or the this year’s zodiac animal “老虎” (tiger) - spot these animals as you explore the one of the best zoos in the world!\
Get your tickets here!
Enjoy the simple pleasures of "Longkang fishing" at Qian Hu Fish Farm. Photo: Qian Hu Fish Farm
5. 年年有“鱼”: Fishing/Prawning
Do you want to take your child for a nostalgic activity this CNY? Relish the good old days as you indulge in a game of fishing or prawning with your child! There are many family-friendly options around Singapore, such as ORTO or the Mainland Tropical Fish Farm that allow your child to enjoy the thrills of fishing and prawning! Not only can you spend some quality time together outdoors, you can also introduce the terms “钓鱼” (fishing) and “钓虾” (prawning) to them! Happy fishing!
Let's kick-start the year with some quality family time! Not only can you work off the calories from the CNY snacks, take the chance to practise bilingual living this festive season!