Thursday, October 3, 2013

Parenting Lesson at Maritime Experiential Museum and S.E.A. Aquarium

When we decided to bring Pei Pei and Hao Hao to the Maritime Experiential Museum and S.E.A. Aquarium at Sentosa, I thought I should not just bring them there to "see see look look", but should make it as educational and fun as possible.

This was the "grand" lesson plan in my mind:
Do you remember the book we read about deep sea animals?
What are they? Yes, they are sharks! Yes, these are jellyfish! Yes, this is a dolphin!

Sound interesting! I thought.

When we entered the S.E.A. Aquarium, Pei Pei and Hao Hao were still energetic, and were amazed to see so many fish.

Pei Pei used my handphone to take photos of fish.

Things seemed to run smoothly until we were queuing at the Discovery Touch Pool. The queue was very long, and the kids were so eager that they went all the way to the front.

Suddenly, both of them started fighting. As I was trying to separate them and talked to them in a stern manner, an auntie looked at me, shook her head, and said "Tsk tsk tsk".

At that instant, I felt like... hello? Who are you? What do you mean by "tsk tsk tsk"? Do you have children? No? Please shut up. Yes? Do you mean that you have never had such moment in your parenting journey as your kids are super well-behaved? Oh, please enlighten all parents how you have done that!

During my parenthood journey, many people have given me advice, guidance and comments, from family members, friends, to aunties and uncles whom we don't know, most of them advised me out of good intention. I still remember there was once I carried one-week-old Pei Pei to have sun tan as she had jaundice, an auntie approached me and shared with me tips on what food I must avoid (as I was breastfeeding) and what time to sun tan the baby. I do appreciate those advice.

To people who give me judgement when they do not understand the situation, I think I shall just ignore them.

After I cooled down, it was our turn. The poor starfish saw stars as Pei Pei swirled the water.

That was only a quarter of the whole S.E.A. Aquarium. Pei Pei and Hao Hao started to fuss and said they wanted to go home.

I tried to carry out my "grand" lesson plan, however, they were simply not interested in the sea creatures.

I thought they must be hungry, so we bought them some food. However, that didn't help much.

I thought they must be tired, so we sat down to rest. They still fussed and wanted to leave.

Ok, fine. We walked out of the aquarium.

To my surprise, they were suddenly energised when they saw this!

They ran and hopped and were chasing each other.

Then I realised something. They may be hungry and / or tired when we were inside the aquarium, but the main problems were that they did not like the crowd, and that they were not really interested in looking at the sea creatures for too long!

Another parenting lesson learnt - do not force children to do things that they do not enjoy.

Let them enjoy doing things that are not harmful to them.

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  1. Sounds like you learned a great lesson that day! I don't have kids, but if I ever do, I am NOT looking forward to what you describe, with people always giving you unsolicited advice! I hear that happens frequently when you have kids, and it really drives me crazy.

    1. Amy, it was indeed a great lesson learnt! I believe in what is right for my children, so I shall ignore those unsolicited advice.

  2. the marina near us is lame compared to this one!! thanks for sharing

    1. Sarah, if you come to Singapore, do visit this aquarium, it is quite interesting.

  3. I think you are doing a great parenting job. You introduced them to cool sea creatures and they got to enjoy some activites afterward. And some people just are rude and don't understand how to deal with children, so don't mind that lady. Sounds like you had a fun day!

    1. Thank you Barbara! I shall not be bothered by those people.


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