DAD SAYS We create fun DIY kid’s activities

Rather than spend money on toys, dad-of-two Edmund Lim would rather create fun innovative activities with his daughters.

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I run a website and Facebook group called Preschool Resources. Inspired by my wife, Pearlyn, who is always creating DIY activities for my daughters, Jannah, 2, and Jazzel, 4, I started the platform in April last year, so that like-minded parents can share their ideas, too.

To date, we’ve got more than 15,000 members in our group, most of whom are fellow parents, or educators. We also organise busy bag swaps twice a year. These are activities that you put together in a bag ― convenient for parents to whip out while waiting for food to be served at the restaurant, while travelling, or even as an activity to do at home. Busy bags are a great way to reduce our reliance on electronic gadgets.

The biggest challenge is to get kids to concentrate on activities that are completely new to them. My daughter Jazzel, for instance, was really interested in playing the piano when she started going for classes. While she loves playing on the piano, she doesn’t particularly like the “theory” portion.

Instead of spending lots of money to constantly buy new toys to keep them entertained, Pearlyn and I create activities according to their specific interests instead.

But having to read the musical notes is an essential part of learning to play an instrument, so Pearlyn designed a game to make the theory lessons more enjoyable.

This entails creating a “musical dice”, with different musical notes of different values (1, 2, 3, or 4 counts) on each side of the dice. You’ll also prepare materials to help the child count, like counting blocks or rings. During the activity, the child rolls the dice and has to respond with the name of the musical note and the note value that’s lying face up. The counting materials will be used to indicate the number of counts the musical note holds, by the child. 

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