4 Jul 2012
I reached Alexandra Canal Play Area and was greeted with fresh puddles of rainwater from a sudden downpour earlier that day. Just like the event at Sengkang Floating Wetland, I was escorted around by enthusiastic student councillors from Crescent Girls’ School. About 40 Secondary 2 students from Admiralty Secondary School and Cedar Girls’ School attended the tour.
The tour started off at a gallery with canvases illustrated by Crescent Girls’ Students, explaining the canal’s features. Using an app developed by the school and in partnership with HP and PUB, the small group animatedly swiped their fingers on their devices, playing games and puzzles while learning about the canal’s history and flora and fauna. For example, in one mini-game, the students were required to vigorously shake and swipe their fingers to widen the canal. The app even had short clips of Crescent Girls’ teachers introducing the canal’s history. I find that this gave the app a more personal touch, allowing the users to feel like they were really being spoken to by a teacher.
Another interesting activity the students carried out was testing the characteristics of the canal’s water. They used elaborate equipment such as data loggers to test the water’s salinity, turbidity, etc. Some of the reactions by the students ranged from, “We got to do hands-on stuff!” to “Never done this kind of thing before.”
The Alexandra Canal is no doubt a very educational place for students and the general public. This is even more so for Crescent Girls’ School, who played a part in the conception and development of this place, and also because the school is just a stone’s throw away from the Canal’s Play Area.
By Dillion Tan