Monday, July 2, 2012

To the Park we go! (HortPark that is)

MandarinaKids recently had a special promotion where a few mummies and I decided to take advantage of and made a playdate out of it. :) As it was a one-time offer and there were 2 locations, HortPark and Central Fire Station,  to choose from, I had such a hard time deciding which venue to go! After discussing with Dumpling, the nature lover in us decided on HortPark. It was also because both of us have never been there before while we have visited the Central Fire Station twice.

For that morning, the group actually consisted of 6 pairs of mum + kiddos but unfortunately, 2 of the mummies could not make it suddenly which was such a pity.

The session spanned over 2 hours where it was a mix of "lesson" + outdoor learning. The weather was beautiful that morning which made the session more enjoyable. There was an Operations Manager who waited for us and greeted us at the main entrance. He then brought the group on a short walk to a sheltered pavilion where we could sit down.

Lelia, CEO of MandarinaKids, was there to greet and meet us despite having another event on the same weekend. Each participant was then handed a bag with 2 packets of drinks (Ribena and Fruit Juice), some snacks, a bottle of bubble and the class material nicely presented in a folder.

Our teacher that morning was Ma Lao Shi who hails from Tian Jin and who has the most beautiful Chinese accent. It was just such great pleasure listening to her speak. :) She was also very patient with the children, firm yet accommodating.

For our session, the children was introduced to texture and this was done with most of the objects found in the park. Children were not expected to just sit there and listen but were encouraged to walk up and participate.

When the children seemed restless, Ma Lao Shi brought the group on a short walk around the vegetation area. It was great for the kids to be able to see and touch some of the plants and vegetables being grown.

Left pic below: Bamboo

Can you guess what this is? :) 

When it started to get hot, the children were led back to the pavilion area to complete some seat work and also had the chance to put up a mini "performance". It was nice to see the mummies being so engaged in the little ones too.

On the whole, the session was well planned and the lesson and materials, well thought of and put together. I liked that the learning was done outside and not in the traditional classroom.

As a Jennifer Lim, a blogger mummy friend, who took up the Central Fire Station visit said "Great excursion & great family time!". Click here to read about her excursion!


Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated to the maanagement of MandarinaKids or have been compensated to write about this excursion. All opinions are based on our experiences and 100% my own.


  1. Wow... I'm just as suaku and need to make a trip to hortpark soon. Been on my list to do for the longest time...

    Looks fun! :)

  2. Looks interesting. I would love to go there but DinoEgg went there during his school's excursion earlier this year. Maybe we try to go at this year end.

  3. Nerdy mum, ohhhhh it is really quite a nice place. If you do go and you drive, try going early as the lots there are quite limited. :) Do share your post!

  4. DinoMama

    I did not even know that they grew vegetables there. The park is also very new and clean so it was really quite enjoyable. I will definitely head back again. :)

  5. Maybe one of these days I'll bring my littlest one. Only imagining how "HOT" Hort Park probably is.

    We've gone on several Mandarina excursions. Sadly, most times, it was only us! Sometimes only 1 other parent-child pair. ;( Like us accompanying Ma Laoshi.

  6. Karmeleon, thanks for stopping by! Ohhhhh... just you guys and Ma Lao Shi? That is like very exclusive! LOL! Where are the places you have been to with her? Maybe next time, Dumpling and I can join you and your kiddo. :)

  7. I signed up for next Tuesday's Fort Canning at 3pm! You want to go? Not sure if there's any others.

    Seems like the afternoon sessions not as popular, so yes, often it's only Ma Laoshi and us. Once she brought one of her twins (a little younger than my boy) - just so it won't be too lonely. I can't make it mornings bc my boy goes to school each morning. And these days, those are my exploratory/me times.

  8. Karmeleon,

    ai yah, that's her nap time. Does your son still nap?

  9. Hi Alicia, I went to check out Mandarina Kids after you mentioned it in the FB thread, and after reading your post, I'm even more interested in going along to check it out some time. Always looking for ways to expose my kids to more Chinese. Thanks for sharing! I went to Hort Park the week after you did and had fun checking out the butterflies and veggies, tho only my husb and I were interested in the veg! Hah.

  10. Karmeleon,

    Mine sleeps v little at night so she cant drop her nap yet. :p Take pics and share!!!!!

  11. Mummybean:
    LOL, the vegetation is kinda cool for me. It's just nice to be able to see such things in our city. What were your little ones keen on? My little one was going crazy with the playground. LOL

    Did you read Jen's post? She had fun at the Fire Station too. MandarinaKids arranged for a private tour with them.

    I am keen on either the Zoo excursion or the Supermarket (weird I know. :p)

  12. Hehe - supermarket? Maybe can arrange private tour with Ma Laoshi.

  13. Karmeleon: Ohhhhh I was told that there was one wor! Heh, I will check it out :p

  14. I've seen them have the supermarket trip before. But don't know when they will arrange again.

    Hehe - I thought arrange ourselves easier. Have Ma Laoshi's handphone number. She stays in the north part of SG.

    Do you speak to your child in Chinese?


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