Young children constantly face new and challenging situations as they grow physically and socially. As the first preschool network to adopt the Habits of Mind, our pedagogy enables the child to develop intelligent thinking and behavioural dispositions when confronted with unfamiliar and uncertain problems.
At Mulberry Learning, not only is the child’s growth and development in terms of education important, but also his physical well-being. The environment is designed to engage the children without compromising on their safety. What they consume plays a part too as the meals provided for the little ones are freshly-made and well-balanced to ensure the children receive the proper nutrients to grow.
At the core of Mulberry Learning’s philosophy is the Habits of Mind framework.
Habits of Mind is about knowing how to behave intelligently and responding effectively when you do not know the answer to unfamiliar problems. For young children who are still discovering the world, Habits of Mind provides them with an avenue for autonomous learning, critical thinking and effective inquiry.
The framework was developed by Dr Arthur Costa, Emeritus Professor of Education at California State University, Sacramento, and Co-Director of the Institute for Intelligent Behaviour in El Dorado Hills, California.
The Habits of Mind framework has been adopted by Singapore’s Ministry of Education (MOE) to groom the top 1% and the brightest students in Singapore under its Gifted Education Programme. Mulberry Learning is the first and only preschool in Singapore and the region to adopt Habits of Mind.
Habits of Mind includes the following 16 habits:
- Thinking and Communicating with Clarity and Precision
- Managing Impulsivity
- Gathering Data Through All Senses
- Listening With Understanding and Empathy
- Creating, Imagining, Innovating
- Thinking Flexibly
- Responding with Wonderment and Awe
- Thinking About Thinking (Metacognition)
- Taking Responsible Risks
- Striving For Accuracy
- Finding Humor
- Questioning and Posing Problems
- Thinking Interdependently
- Applying Past Knowledge to New Situations
- Remaining Open to Continuous Learning
Through the Habits of Mind framework, the children are encouraged to be self-directed learners who are more confident in facing difficult challenges, have good concentration and problem-solving
The 16 habits instil positive personality traits and behaviour in children such as empathy and interdependent thinking that will allow the children to develop skills such as strategic reasoning, insightfulness, perseverance and creativity and apply their learnings to an ever-expanding array of challenges not only in subjects taught in school, but also in their communities, their lives and their world.
They become adept in socializing when working with their peers and eventually, they develop into interdependent learners who are well prepared for their future and bound for success in a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (V.U.C.A) 21 st century world.
How Mulberry Learning incorporates HOM into its curriculum
Children learn best through imitation because most dispositional learnings are “caught, not taught”.
Habits are never fully mastered but they do become more apparent over time. In order for the children to acquire and retain these habits, repeated opportunities are provided for them to practice and learn spontaneously. These habits act as an “internal guide” in facilitating the child’s actions, decisions and thoughts.
As the child grows, their internalization of the Habits of Mind will encapsulate exploring meanings, expanding capacities, increasing their alertness, extending values and building commitment for continuous improvement.
Mulberry Learning integrates the Habits of Mind in the following ways: