Another Week Beyond – 1848

Beyond Another Week Beyond

Dear Friends,

Last night was the third “Celebration of Learning” we have been holding these past couple of weeks. Another 2 more to go but this year-end event is one of the ways we encourage a culture of learning wherever we work. Children dressed in their best clothes, a child excitedly running up stage as his name was called, mothers congratulating each other for completing a basic English course and parents giving out certificates of achievement with warm words of encouragement were some moments that illustrated the relevance of celebrating effort and not just outcomes.

I was also most heartened to see parents and youth taking charge of the evening’s programme and contributing to its success. They curated performances from within their neighbourhood and with a K-pop inspired dance as well as a traditional Malay one, there appeared to be something appealing for everyone who came. I was especially touched by the performance of 8 children who put together a short play that articulated the challenge of performing well in school. When granted a wish by a fairy godmother; a girl who was worried about her PSLE results, requested for some care and attention from family and friends instead of asking to pass well.

A volunteer who was helping them with their stage craft shared that she was surprised by how much these children had to say once they believed that she could be trusted. Over the past 3 weeks, these children told her about their experiences at home and at school which they found undesirable. From what was shared, the children took what they felt comfortable revealing in public and worked that into the storyline for their drama performance.

On stage the children were confident and eloquent. Perhaps it was because they were not repeating lines that they had memorized but simply expressing a familiar life script. Nonetheless, we hope that small successes, proud moments and happy memories assure our children that one’s life is not scripted but is an opportunity to create, direct and to act. From their drama’s opening chorus, I am optimistic that they have begun to see this.

I have a dream, a song to sing
To help me cope with anything
If you see the wonder of a fairy tale
You can take the future even if you fail
I have a dream
A song to sing.
Enjoy your week.
“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” ― Paulo Coelho

Our most grateful thanks to all who supported our “celebrations of learning” especially,
Ms Joan Pereira, MP Tanjong Pagar GRC, Alexandra Fire Station, Anglo Chinese Junior College, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Chef Bob from the Landmark, Far East Organisation, GIC Pte Ltd, LEGO Singapore Pte Ltd, Mapletree Investments Pte ltd, MCC Land (S) Pte Ltd, Nanyang Technological University, National University of Singapore, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, RSVP Singapore, Whampoa Community Club, Yio Chu Kang Zones 7 & 9 Residents’ Committees.