SINGAPORE: When it reopens in 2021, the Singapore Philatelic Museum will become a dedicated children’s museum targeted at those aged 12 and below, it was announced on Friday (Mar 6).
"The Singapore Philatelic Museum will be revamped as a dedicated children’s museum where children can learn about a wide range of themes, including the heritage and culture of Singapore and the region, by playing with interactive and immersive exhibits," said Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Grace Fu in her Committee of Supply speech.
The new children’s museum will encourage young visitors to explore and learn through artefacts, hands-on and immersive displays, personal stories, and role-playing, said the National Heritage Board (NHB) in a fact sheet. It will explore a range of themes including heritage, culture and contemporary issues.
The new children’s museum will be a “starter museum” to introduce young visitors and their families to the museum-going experience, said NHB. The museum’s existing stamp collection will continue to be used alongside other artefacts to support children’s learning.
“Stamps make excellent educational resources for children who find them attractive and accessible, and they will be part of the museum’s refreshed permanent galleries and special exhibitions,” added NHB.
The Singapore Philatelic Museum has been closed to the public since Mar 18 last year for redevelopment works. It officially opened in 1995.
NHB and the Ministry of Education (MOE) will also introduce museum-based learning at the Asian Civilisations Museum and the National Museum of Singapore from this year, said the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth.
This follows successful pilots in 2018 and 2019. All Primary 6 students will visit the Asian Civilisations Museum, while Secondary 2 students will visit the National Museum as part of MOE's cohort learning journeys.
Students will travel through the museums in small groups, interact with museum educators, and complete hands-on activities with their friends, said Ms Fu.
At the National Museum for instance, students can learn the struggles of the Japanese occupation by choosing artefacts they are interested in, and having conversations around those artefacts. One such artefact is Elizabeth Choy’s dress, which she wore while held captive.
"Through this experience of exploring our history as a cohort, we hope our students will form shared memories together, and learn important values such as self-determination and helping one another during difficult times," added Ms Fu.
"These initiatives will make learning more meaningful and come alive for students, as they go through the Character and Citizenship Education syllabus, and subjects such as Social Studies in primary school and History in secondary school."