April 12 saw the opening of KidZania Singapore, the newest and biggest member of this popular edutainment chain in South East Asia. Located on Palawan Beach, just a few steps from Sentosa Beach Station, this impressive complex offers kids the chance to role-play in a wide choice of possible careers, while learning and having fun at the same time. Spread over 81,000 metres, just a short stroll from the beach and other island attractions like Ifly Singapore and Skyline Luge Sentosa, it presents a convenient option while on a day out on Sentosa, especially in the heat of the day or when it’s raining.
Built as an enclosed kids city, this fully air-conditioned facility is supported by a selection of international and local brands, giving children the chance to participate in a series of role-play situations based on reality.
The entrance to Kidzania Singapore sets the tone for the obvious attention to detail and investment that has gone into its conception. With Qatar Airlines a participating partner, the ‘airport’ foyer is dominated by the fuselage of a real life Boeing 737, its nose playfully poking out of the building’s facade.
On arrival, families ‘check in’ to the facility as if about to embark on a journey, exchanging cash for KidZos, the official currency which is valid in each of its 23 international outlets. Children both earn and spend KidZos during their visits, instilling in them a notion of financial interaction and responsibility. Frequent visitors can apply for a ‘Pazzport,’ which allows kids to become citiZens, enabling them to earn extra KidZos and get discounts at participating outlets. According to KidZania, the activities that the children take part in are “carefully crafted so that children will be able to pick up values and life skills such as responsibility, independence and decision making.”
What sets it apart from other forms of education is that it’s also a lot of fun! Children can participate in a full range of job activities, split into sections like Automotive, Culture/Arts, Education, Financial Services, Food & Beverage, Health, Media, Public and Private Services and Sports. Perhaps the most impressive activity lies inside the Qatar 737, where flight simulators allow kids the chance to try their hand at flying either the A380 or the Boeing 787 – they can also work as cabin crew while dressed in the official Qatar Airlines uniforms. Other activities include working as a fireman putting out fires, cooking in the kitchen as a chef or checking teeth as a dentist. Alternatively kids can tread the boards learning to be an actor, host their own documentary with Discovery or strut down the catwalk as a fashion model. Once children complete the tasks they have been assigned, they earn KidZos, which can then be spent or saved for future activities. Of the 37 participating brands, 17 are local, including much-loved F&B outlets like Killiney Kopitiam, Warung M Nasir and The Soup Spoon and venerable institutions like the Singapore Civil Defence Force, the Singapore Police Force, Mount Elizabeth Hospital and the Learning Lab.
While kids are taking part in their role-playing activities, parents are free to watch their kids in action or can relax with a magazine in the Parent’s Lounge. There is also a team of photographers working throughout the complex, capturing images of children in their respective roles and all images can be purchased at the end of the visit.
For more information, visit kidzania.com.sg
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