Lakeside Primary School

CARNIVALS @ LSP

Introduction

For years, the Sports Day has been a major school event. While its values remain important, we were concerned about the growing limitations the old structure posed. As a result, we initiated the unprecedented change to a new approach that was greatly motivated by the need to provide our students with a more student-centric experience. This symbolised a revolutionary move away from the traditional ways of running Sports Day/Carnival.  

Then on, Carnivals were designed with alignment to the school’s Strategic Thrust of “Nurturing Lakers to be Future Ready”, with the intent to provide every student, a unique “Laker Total School Experience” and promoting 21st Century Competencies (21st CC) and Social Emotional Learning (SEL) skills.

In 2018, the first novel Carnival was conceived, with the theme of Active Learning, Active Play and Health Awareness, targeting maximum participation through maximised space and maximised concurrent movement. The carnival was anchored on objectives, from hard to soft skills; from psychomotor skills development, team building and health awareness, to instilling ownership and self-directed learning. Through different physical activities, students work together in teams to achieve these goals, gain ownership of learning and the sense of responsibility, perseverance and decision-making.



Active Lifestyle Carnival 2018


Drone views of Active Lifestyle Carnival 2018

In 2019, we continued with this intent, but we expanded to include a greater scope, and achieved a greater outreach with further increased participation. This meant involving all six levels of students, and designing a year-long series of programmes that culminate to the eventual Lakers’ Friendship Carnival in October 2019. With the theme of “A Celebration of Friendship through Fun & Games”, the refreshed Carnival provided opportunities for students to forge stronger bonds between juniors and seniors. New elements of Dance, Music and Art were added to the scope of activities, to encourage our students to develop a deeper appreciation for the arts. We also incorporated the House System which forms the basis of the Inter-House Challenge and points system. The contributing events to that include, Step Up Challenge (a whole school recess jogging challenge), NAPFA test, Station Activities and Inter-House Cheer Competition during Carnival Day.

 


Lakers Friendship Carnival 2019

Structure Reasons Intent
Past Practices

Alternate Years Traditional Sports Day and Sports Carnival

Sports Day:

  • Inter-house Sports Day. Track running and relay events. Heats and Finals.
  • Students divided into running competitors or cheering crowd.

Sports Carnival:

  • Small sports or classroom games conducted by teachers, classes move as a class, play as a group of up to 20 a time. Small tokens for winning group. 
  • Unidirectional, linear in movement. 
Sports Day: 

  • Culture tradition. Elitism in competitors, camaraderie in house and cheerleading.

Problems: 

  • Lack of participation, students’ engagement.

Sports Carnival:

  • Promote mass participation in sports-related activities.

Problems: 

  • Limited students’ engagement, long waiting time as a big group. 
  • Movement is controlled, students also do not have a choice over the activities.
Sports Day:

  • Align to school motto “Be Our Best”
  • Cultivate values of LPRIDE.

Sports Carnival: 

  • Promote mass participation. 
  • Develop llfe-long commitment towards healthy lifestyle through enjoyment in sports. 
Novel Idea

2018 – 

Active Lifestyle Carnival

  • Unique stations identified and set up in 5 key school venues according to 3 categories: 
    • Psychomotor Skills Development
    • Team Building
    • Health Awareness
  • Students (from the same class, P3 to P6) move around in groups of 5 to 6 on their own to attempt activities to earn tokens, must complete at least 2 different types of activities as a team to earn a token. 
  • Multi-directional in movement, everyone can be engaged concurrently.
  • Mass participation in physical activities, encourage every student to take on an active & healthy lifestyle.
  • Student-centered learning experience.
  • Instill ownership & self-directed learning in students.
  • Provide opportunity for decision making and instilling values such as responsibility and perseverance.
  • Encourage students to work in teams to achieve specified goals. 
  • Allow students to construct learning on their own freely, they can decide their own route of movements. (Non-linear in both learning and movement.)
  • School’s Strategic Thrust: Nurturing Lakers to be Future Ready
  • Promote 21st CC and SEL skills.
  • Theme:
  • Active Learning
  • Active Play 
  • Health Awareness
  • Maximum participation through maximised space and maximised concurrent movement.
Refreshed Idea 

2019 – 

Lakers’ Friendship Carnival

  • Unique stations identified and set up in 6 school venues according to 4 categories: 
    • Sports 
    • Team Building
    • Aesthetics
    • Traditional Games
  • 6 Levels of students involved, mixed-level grouping of 6 students in each group, based on House System.
  • Students move around in the groups on their own to attempt activities to earn tokens, must complete at least 2 different types of activities as a team to earn a token. 
  • Multi-directional in movement, everyone can be engaged concurrently.
  • Provide opportunity to forge stronger friendship bond between juniors and seniors.
  • Mass participation in activities, encourage every student to take on an active lifestyle and have a deeper appreciation for the Arts.
  • Student-centered learning experience.
  • Instill ownership & self-directed learning in students.
  • Provide opportunity for decision making and instilling values such as responsibility and perseverance.
  • Encourage students to work in teams to achieve specified goals. 
  • Allow students to construct learning on their own freely, they can decide their own route of movements. (Non-linear in both learning and movement.)
  • School’s Strategic Thrust: Nurturing Lakers to be Future Ready
  • Laker Total School Experience
  • House System:

Align to school values of LPRIDE.

  • Promote 21st CC and SEL skills.
  • Theme:
    • A Celebration of Friendship through Fun & Games
  • Maximum participation through maximised space and maximised concurrent movement.

Mental Model

The overall process of Conceptualisation, Development and Implementation of the idea, Active Lifestyle Carnival 2018, is undergirded by the Design Thinking Process, one of the key initiatives of our school to promote a culture of thinking. Within the core of this Design Thinking Process, we incorporated the Event Planning Model, and during this process of putting our vision into effect, we also took reference from Six Thinking Hats. Such methods serve to ensure the alignment of our Event’s Structure and Content with the Desired Outcomes.

Understand (Preparation)

Empathise

Firm beliefs of a student-centred learning experience, consider the aspects of student population and learning objectives. Consider past event practices and objectives. Research on various Carnival event designs.

Define

Identify key foci, problems and considerations of student activities. Firm up the Event Concept, Big Ideas, Themes and establish objectives. Determine Finance, Administrative and Communicative Processes, as well as Roles and Responsibilities.

Explore and Materialize (Detailed Planning)

  • Ideate: Generate a range of different ideas.
  • Prototype: Build representations for the range of ideas, i.e. Drafts Event Plans.
  • Test: Rigorously test the Draft Plans, Mental Dry Runs, Visualisations and Revisions.

In this segment, the Ideation and Prototyping technique we harnessed is “Six Thinking Hats”.

The team is engaged in negotiations and discussions to brainstorm, build and analyse every component from different perspectives under the Six Thinking Hats, for e.g. Negative: Scrutinise logically and cautiously, for problems, risk and weaknesses; Positive: to consider values, benefits and advantages. The items in plan include Activities Categories, Sequence of Events, Token Redemption System, Involvement of Partner Groups and other stakeholders, Venues, Logistics, Floor Plan and Layout, etc. 

  • Implement and Post Event: Event Day tasks and Post-Event Evaluation.

The Non-Linear Nature of Design Thinking

While the process is generally linear, in which one stage leads to the next logically, its components can happen in flexible, iterative and non-linear fashion. For e.g. Results from the testing phase may prompt redefinition of problems, which in turn may lead to another brainstorming session (Ideate) or the development of new Prototypes (drafts) or alterations and refinements to existing drafts. 



Challenges

The table below summarises the implementation challenges we faced and solutions we came out with.

S/N Challenges Solutions
1 With a student population of about 1400, we need to utilise as many venues as possible in the school compound. However, there are some venues that are susceptible to weather conditions, such as the basketball court and school field.  Instead of leaving the basketball court and school field totally unutilised, we made use of the basketball court. However, we had contingency plans whereby alternative indoor activities could be quickly activated if it poured in the morning.
2 Not all P5s and P6s were mature and ready to lead a group each. They were off-task and distracted easily, resulting in their group members going astray in the midst of the carnival. We conducted two Pre-assembly Values Education (PAVE) sessions for the students, reminding them not only of the expected behaviour during the carnival, we also reinforced the importance of P5 and P6 students playing a key role in leading and managing their group members during the activities and bringing them from place to place in an orderly fashion. Knowing that there would still be ‘lost sheep’ on the actual day despite the briefing, we dedicated a General Office staff to be stationed at the reception area to attend to students who were lost. The staff had the necessary documents that they could refer to, in order to direct the students to ‘reunite’ with their group members.
3 Students, especially from the lower primary, with special needs such as ADHD and autism could not work together in a group.  We deployed Allied Educators (AEDs) and school counsellors to guide these students in the activities. For students with milder special needs, they will be with their groups, but we made sure that these groups consist of group leaders who were very responsible and capable of managing the more challenging students.  

Conclusion

All in all, to observe our students being fully engaged, interacting with peers across levels, learning to de-conflict and work as a team, make collective decisions, demonstrate values such as perseverance, participating in a variety of activities; this rationalises our Change. 

The Change (and Unchanged) being the constant reimagining and rethinking of our programmes and objectives.

For that reason, at Lakeside Primary, we believe in providing our students with opportunities to be curious, to explore and develop holistically in a vibrant learning environment.

Because,

Our students’ learning experiences matter.

SCHOOL PHILOSOPHY
Every Individual C.A.N.Contribute. Achieve. be Nurtured

 

VISION
A Life-Long Learner. A Virtuous Leader.

 

MISSION
To Provide Quality Education to Nurture Wholesome Individuals.


Low Boon Siang and Lim Yu Su Ice

Contact Us

Name Email Contact
Low Boon Siang low_boon_siang@moe.edu.sg
Lim Yu Su Ice lim_yu_su@moe.edu.sg

References

Bono, E. D. (1985). Six thinking hats. Little, Brown and Co, Boston, MA.

Dowson. R., & Bassett, D. (2015). Event planning and management: A practical handbook for PR and events professionals. Kogan Page: London.

Nielsen Norman Group (2020, October 20). Design thinking 101.
https://www.nngroup.com/articles/design-thinking/

Plattner, H., Meinel, C., & Leifer, L. (2010). Design thinking: Understand – Improve – Apply. Springer Science & Business Media.