The PAP Community Foundation was established in 1986 as a charitable arm of the PAP. From them came the PCF Kindergartens which helped prepare children for primary school entry.
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I had a rather bad experience going to school here.
The teachers played favourites and constantly told me I was too talkative (well only one of them, and I remember her to this day). Really doesn't strike me as something an educator should do, especially since, you know, I was 4. Instead of encouraging, they scolded, instead of explaining, they prescribed formulaic behaviour. "Do __________ if you want to be a good girl." Coursework was unchallenging, and frankly, quite boring. The teachers made no effort at ingraining the importance of "lifelong learning", it seemed, rather, that they just wanted the day to be over.
I don't know how much the system has changed since then, although I reckon that since children in kindergartens can't really elucidate complaints, I expect little has.
"We are Happy Little Kids, having lots of fun. Happy little kids in school....."
I still remember this song which I sang during my school times at PCF Kindergarten. I am so grateful that my parents have decided to send me there as it is very important to start this education journey right.
PCF Kindergarten was the first institution where I picked up social and communication skills with my peers by sharing, helping and showing care and concern for one another.
Gone were the days when school was nothing but full of love, fun and joy. How I miss my kindergarten school life!
Though the last time i stepped in there was more than a decade ago, i can still vaguely remember happenings and how it had improved the lives of my parents after sending me and my brother there. That place is a subsidized place or so i heard, so the school fees to pay as compared to other nurseries is much lesser than other private schools.
That being said, though the parents pay lesser, they do not get lesser. The teachers interact with the kids well, and conduct educational games within the students to build bonds and strengthen ties.
The PCF Kindergarten was the first step of my schooling experience. Enrolled in the place when I was merely 3 years old, thanks to my parents having been infected by the 'kiasu bug', it was my first experience staying away from home for such a long period of time (Although it was only a few hours)
Adamantly, I picked up a bundle of important skills there. It was the first time where a toddler (me then) had to try to function in a social setting and make friends. No longer being the princeling at home with mum and dad's full attention, I learnt to co-operate, share my toys and keep up with academics, definitely accelerating my growing up process. This first milestone is indeed, the most significant for me.
I attended PCF Kindergarten when I was a mere child, and to this date, I can still remember some vague memories of that place. It's been more than a decade since I left that school, but my impressions of the school has stayed with me, and I suppose my schooling years there shaped a part of who I am today.
The PCF Kindergarten uniform is definitely one of the most adorable kindergarten uniforms around Singapore. For a government supported organisation, it's almost surprising how downright cute the uniforms there are, and hardly any other kindergartens, private or not can hold a candle to the sheer adorableness of the uniform there.
I also recall how strict the teachers there used to be - the toddler that I used to be would always break into tears whenever I got scolded, though I suppose that helped greatly in moulding my character, and taught me some important values in life.
PCF Kindergarten reminds me of a homely childhood - I used to adore recess during my kindergarten years, as the man who tended the bread stall served the most delicious butter bread that I'd ever tasted, and I suppose that was my very first inkling of delicious food.
I'm not sure if PCF is still what it used to be, but it's certainly a wonderful place to start a toddler's learning journey. Why pay more for private kindergartens when a government-supported one offers the same quality of education, not to mention, with a more adorable uniform?
When I was a toddler, PCF kindergartens were very popular with parents as they wanted to give their kids a head start in primary school. I remember my parents sending me to one located at the void deck of a nearby block. At that age, the memories are vague but pleasant. I remember the teachers who were nice except for one particularly fierce lady (she probably was the principal). I remember the shorts and t-shirt uniforms, the children songs, rushing for snacks, and squabbling with other kids over toys.
Overall it was a good introduction to school life. You are away from the protective environment of home but still in a safe place where you are slowly transitioned from play to study.
Today, PCF Kindergartens are over shadowed by more premier private preschools and kindergartens, but there are many still around in HDB estates.