Name of Recipient:
Ms. Ooi Wan Loo
Established in 2003, Little Wonders now has over ten years of history in the early childhood education industry. Currently under the management of Ms. Ooi Wan Loo, Little Wonders offers playgroup classes for children of 18 to 35 months, as well as nursery to kindergarten 2 lessons for children from 4 to 6 years old. With the Montessori programme structure, Little Wonders’s curriculum emphasizes on elements such as practical life, sensorial development, literacy, mathematics, as well as cultural development.
Besides the Montessori programme, Little Wonders focuses on six core-learning areas such as; numeracy skills, aesthetics and creativity expression, languages and literacy development, environmental awareness, motor skill development, as well as self and social awareness development. These are all integrated within the curriculum and reinforced daily to the children.
Furthermore, besides providing the mainstream preschool curriculum, Little Wonders Montessori also provides other activities in their centres in the afternoon, including English and Chinese speech and drama, gym, abacus, structured art lessons, and more.
In addition, Little Wonders have also implemented a comprehensive Music programme developed specifically for preschool-aged children. Ms. Ooi said, “The reasons of including this programme as part of the core weekly schedule was because we recognize the importance of achieving a more complete early childhood development goal by sharpening right-brain and left-brain functions through music.” With their varied extra curriculum activities they are truly a testament to how committed Ms. Ooi and Little Wonders are into providing a well-rounded education for their children.
Having had interest in the education industry for a while, it seemed a natural step for Ms. Ooi to establish Little Wonders Montessori. Looking back on her decision, she said, “I have always had an interest in education. My own children went through preschool and I had always felt that preschool need not be extremely expensive, yet can be designed to be relevant to create the future leaders of our workforce.”
When Ms. Ooi first took over, she knew that certain challenges and difficulties are unavoidable. She said, “Being a newcomer, of course everything was a new experience. This is an industry that relies on trust and good working relationships amongst centre staff as well as relationship with the parents who have decided to bestow their trust on us in caring for and developing the mind and character of their young children. This takes great patience and perseverance to see through the strengthening of this bond.
To make the transition period a smooth one for all parties, Little Wonders proceed to implement certain changes to their operations. To start off, they made updates to the existing curriculum; reinforced on the reading programme for all the children, made further emphasis on physical development in the curriculum, as well as writing and comprehensive courses for pre-Primary children.
In addition, Little Wonders also places much emphasis on efforts to maintain a strong parent-teacher partnership, which ensures that both parents and teachers are constantly aware of the needs and developmental goals of the children under their care. This was necessary as early childhood education is a very competitive industry, with highly sensitive clientele who constantly evaluates on the service received.
To ensure that their curriculum is up to standard, it is constantly calibrated according to the guidelines of the Nurturing Early Learners framework. Lesson content is evaluated to ensure relevance based on the changing needs of our environment. Ms. Ooi said, “We also have to offer differentiated services to stay ahead of our competition. Education is not static and we strive to offer more than the standard guidelines to our parents.”
Looking back on her time with Little Wonders so far, Ms. Ooi is now clearer on what it takes to succeed in her entrepreneur journey. “One of the most important things I learnt is to have open communications. Parents nowadays want you to be as transparent as possible. For example, even if a child fall down without suffering visible injuries, we will still inform the parents, because as a childcare provider, we need to be as responsible and accountable to parents as much as possible.”
Additionally, Ms. Ooi believes that an entrepreneur needs to be a people person in order to achieve entrepreneurial success. “Especially in this industry, we need to have the passion for people and for children, because dealing with people is not easy but it can be a rewarding job, especially when you see children grow and being nurtured with the right behavior. You will definitely feel a sense of achievement and satisfaction.”
Looking ahead, Ms. Ooi maintains a positive but reserved outlook for the next few years ahead. “Growth is always welcome. To me, we need to focus on exceeding the expectations and needs of the present moment. The future is a work in progress and will take care of itself.”
With their dedication, passion, and discipline, Little Wonders Montessori Childcare will be an epitome of excellence in the early childhood education landscape. Ms. Ooi’s ambition to constantly better herself and her centre will no doubt lead Little Wonders to greater successes in the near future.
2 Hillview Way S(669173)
T| 6766 7370
Jalan Remaja Branch
33 Jalan Remaja S(668693)
T| 6762 9202