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National Gallery Singapore
Photograph: National Gallery Singapore

The best kid-friendly things to do during the school holidays

School's out! Take the kids out (or stay in) for some fun at these family-friendly events and activities in Singapore

By Cam Khalid
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While many family events remain postponed or cancelled, kid-friendly attractions including playgrounds and museums have resumed activity to keep the kids entertained. But regardless of whether you choose to head out or stay home, there are plenty of things to do during the December school holidays. Keep your active tots and tykes busy with everything from the annual Children's Season to workshops that show you all it takes to be a farmer, photographer, and even princess. For more ideas, check out our guide on the 50 best things to do with kids in Singapore.

RECOMMENDED: The best kid-friendly hiking trails in Singapore and the best indoor playgrounds in Singapore

Doraemon''s Time-Travelling Adventures in Singapore
Photograph: Dewi Nurjuwita

Doraemon’s Time-Travelling Adventures in Singapore

Art Public art National Museum of Singapore, City Hall

Step through the Anywhere Door and embark on a time-travelling adventure with Doraemon. Meet the cat-type robot from our childhood through photo opportunities within the grounds of the National Museum of Singapore and specially-designed collectables. One of the most iconic doors in Japanese manga and anime, the Anywhere Door is found alongside adorable Doraemon statues across the museum's front lawn – perfect for a photo opportunity. Inside the museum, the Time Machine, another classic gadget invites you to travel through both time and space.

National Gallery Singapore
Photograph: National Gallery Singapore

An Artist’s Tropical Landscape

Kids Exhibitions National Gallery Singapore, City Hall

Get the kids acquainted with works by brilliant local painter Georgette Chen, one of the pioneers of the Nanyang art style movement. An Artist's Tropical Landscape encourages kids to explore the fascinating world of fruit, a prominent subject matter in the artist's oeuvre. Children aged six to twelve get to explore the fascinating world of tropical fruits and draw fruits and composing still life drawings, as well as engage in sensorial play in the curious audio area. Don't miss the life-sized Rambutan Room for augmented reality kinetic games. 

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Children's Season
Photograph: Asian Civilisations Museum

Children's Season

Kids Festivals Singapore City, Raffles Place

Parents, here's how to keep 'em active tots and tykes occupied during this school holiday. Held online, as well as on-site at the city's museums and heritage galleries, the annual Children's Season returns with more fun activities to spark their curiosity about the diverse variety of museums in Singapore. Watch them take on the online hide-and-seek game that uses Augmented Reality (AR) technology to explore virtual museum spaces, discover clues to hidden treasures along the way, and learn more about the stories behind the museums. Parents can also use the online platform to check out the various family-friendly programmes and activities available on-site, providing a fuss-free way to plan museum visits across the school holiday period.

A Universal Christmas
Photograph: Resorts World Sentosa

A Universal Christmas

Things to do Universal Studios Singapore, Sentosa

Get into the festive spirit with all of Universal Studios Singapore’s (USS) yuletide trimmings, including adorable characters from Despicable Me, Minions, Sesame Street, Madagascar, and Shrek spreading the Christmas cheer in their festive ensemble. While waiting for Santa Claus (here's hoping the travel restrictions won't hold him back), you can immerse in his own magical movie land in USS' New York. Adorned with interactive movie sets, Lights, Camera, Christmas invites all to step into its hot air balloon, and topsy turvy house. And as always, there are the thrilling rides to make it a season to remember.

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A SEAASON of Rediscovery at S.E.A. Aquarium
Photograph: Resorts World Sentosa

A SEAASON of Rediscovery at S.E.A. Aquarium

Things to do SEA Aquarium at Resorts World Sentosa, Sentosa

See with over 100,000 marina animals at S.E.A. Aquarium through a brand-new underwater experience complete with refreshed educational content and immersive audio-visual programmes. This complements the aquarium's recent facelift which features specially designed light effects and fascinating soundscapes. The sea critters here are also looking a lot like Christmas. Observe the scarlet skunk cleaner shrimp (yes, that's its actual name) with its distinctive pair of bright red stripes, the snowflake moray eel, and the pinecone fish. Have fun with the various games and photo opportunities dotted in the aquarium too.

Andsoforth Princess Academy
Photograph: Andsoforth

Andsoforth Princess Academy

Kids Workshops and classes Singapore City, Raffles Place

Make your little princess's fairytale dreams come true with the Andsoforth Princess Academy led by characters from the theatre company's previous productions 22 Stories, Fairy Tales Live, and Grimmsneyland. The three-day boot camp will have the princesses-in-training learn the ropes of etiquette, poise, and craft. They are also tasked to complete royal duties like decorating their very own pumpkin carriage and ultimately, turning into a real-life Cinderella complete with a personalised princess gown and make-up – all ready for the royal ball. The workshop includes an exclusive Andsoforth Princess Academy backpack, a make-up kit fit for a princess, and a paper mache dressmaking kit to take home. 

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Science Centre Singapore
Photograph: Science Centre Singapore

Living Worlds: An Animal Planet Experience Exhibition

Kids Science Centre Singapore, Jurong East

Step out with the kids for an exciting exploration into the wild at the world's first travelling edutainment exhibition that looks into the interdependent relationship between animals and the environments they inhabit. See the world through their eyes via interactive multimedia play elements, never-seen-before footage and stories of the natural world, all while fostering environmental consciousness.

 

Immersive Children’s Book Workshop
Photograph: Andsoforth

Immersive Children’s Book Workshop

Kids Book events Singapore City, Raffles Place

Expose your little ones to the inventive, globetrotting story by Jules Vernes, Around the World in 80 Days, with Andsoforth's book workshop for kids. Not your usual book club – little explorers can look forward to hands-on activities that teach them the intricate art of knot tying, letter writing, and astrology as they traverse through different 'countries', meet different characters, and live out their fantastical dreams. Just like any Andsoforth experience, the secret location is disclosed to ticket holders within 24 hours prior to the workshop. 

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kids, painting
Photograph: Bernard Hermant/Unsplash

Seed to Soul: Kids Edition

Kids Crane Club, River Valley

Crane has got some family-friendly activities up its sleeves for you and your little ones. Gather the tots for therapeutic parent-child workshops that explore art and movement in fun and creative ways, such as making pancakes, doodling with watercolour and inks, and decorating shortbread cookies. For a post-workshop shopping, check out the pop-ups of brands such as Air Amber, SG Homemade, and Celementoni selling their sustainable wares including food, apparel, toys, and books for children.

Santa Run for Wishes
Photograph: Make-A-Wish Singapore

Santa Run for Wishes

Sport and fitness Running Singapore City, Raffles Place

'Tis the season for giving. Do good and burn some calories this Christmas with the annual Santa Run for Wishes which returns with a brand-new virtual format and exciting family-friendly activities. Choose from the 2kilometre, 5-kilometre, 10-kilometre, or 50-kilometre race categories, and spread a little Christmas cheer with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. All proceeds from the race go towards granting the wishes of children with critical illnesses. Registration is now open via bit.ly/santarun20.

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Camp Junior Urban Farmer
Photograph: Edible Garden City

Camp Junior Urban Farmer

Kids Workshops and classes Edible Garden City, Tanglin

Sometimes you don't need green fingers to grow plants – honing your gardening skills with Edible Garden City will do the trick. During the school holidays, the social enterprise is inviting youngsters between the ages of 10 and 12 to experience farm life for three days, doing everything from gardening and sowing seeds to creating artworks and fostering new friendships with fellow mini eco-warriors. Besides plants, kids can get up close to insects and animals, learn how all three depend on one another, and the importance of protecting nature.

Canon Parent & Child photography workshop
Photograph: Canon Singapore

Canon Parent & Child Photography Workshop

Kids Workshops and classes Singapore City, Raffles Place

Got a budding shutterbug at home? Let Canon Singapore show you and your kids the ropes on working the camera and the basics of photography. Led by professional photographer and educator Bernard Teo, the four-hour parent and child workshop introduces the use of shapes, colours and creative framing to capture stunning images. It's recommended for you to bring your own cameras, but if you don't have any, DSLR cameras will be provided for adults and digital compact cameras for children.

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Spongebob
Photograph: Artur Tumasjan/Unsplash

Nickelodeon Day of Play

Kids Singapore City, Raffles Place

Join the ultimate playcation with Nickelodeon in its first-ever virtual event in Asia. Teaming up with Singtel TV, the kids' channel (Singtel TV Channel 240) is interrupting its regular broadcast for a three-hour special that will keep the kids busy. It includes the biggest Nickelodeon shows such as SpongeBob SquarePants, Henry Danger, and The Thundermans, with play tips from celebrity athletes – and a surprise Nickelodeon star – based on the storylines of these shows. Kids can also take part in the Nickelodeon Day of Play Challenge for a chance to win a spot of fame on the channel, as well as one of many amazing prizes such as a PlayStation 5, Nintendo Switch, or Nickelodeon fan swag.

Science Centre Singapore
Photograph: Science Centre Singapore

Tinker Fest

Kids Science Centre Singapore, Jurong East

Encourage the kids to put their thinking caps on and test their hand-eye coordination in various complimentary hands-on activities at Science Centre Singapore's bi-annual event. Based on the theme 'flow', this year's Tinker Fest explores the various science concepts related to flow and fluidity – a nod to the adaptability of humanity in the midst of the global pandemic. Your mini scientist can have a go at creating a sand clock, try marble flow painting, see the fun of siphons, and more. Tinker Fest is free with every Science Centre Singapore admission.

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kids, science
Photograph: Shutterstock

Untame: Beyond Boundaries

Kids Festivals Singapore City, Raffles Place

Gather the family and dive deep into the science behind various topics such as sustainable food through more than 30 online experiences including live shows, challenges, and Untamed Conversations with local and international STEM heroes. Passholders who take part in the curated on-site activities and workshops at the Science Centre Singapore will also receive a power-packed kit.

Future World
Photograph: teamLab

Future World

Art ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay

The stunning lotus-shaped building is an iconic landmark in the Singapore skyline and also a place where art, science, culture and technology come together. Take your kids on an artistic adventure at the museum's permanent exhibition, Future World – Where Art Meets Science. Together with digital art installations by teamLab, a trip here will light up your kids’ creative bulb where they can watch their 2D crayon creation transform into animations. While most of the displays are opened for an immersive experience, the artwork Sliding through the Fruit Field is only available for viewing and not for public interaction due to safety management measures.

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Scribble Town
Photograph: National Heritage Board

Scribble Town

Kids Exhibitions Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, Novena

Whether you've fallen victim to bullying or have been on the other end of it, reflect your own experiences with this interactive exhibition at Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall (SYSNMH). Especially for kids aged between nine and 12, the exhibition features comic artwork that takes visitors on a quest to save the fictional world of Scribble Town alongside characters Sam, Dan, and Lydia. Through the adventure, observe the interactions between the characters and gain a better understanding of the different types of bullying, how and why bullying occurs, and the corresponding impact on the involved parties.

An Artist's Tropical Landscape, GalleryKids!
Photograph: National Gallery Singapore

GalleryKids!

Kids Singapore City, Raffles Place

Besides new multi-sensorial experiences at National Gallery Singapore, kiddos can unleash their inner Picasso on the museum's online portal GalleryKids! Get creative with interactive games, masterclasses, storytelling video sessions, and art tutorials. Highlights include An Artist’s Tropical Landscape where the little ones can explore art through a variety of learning approaches, inspired by beloved Singaporean artist Georgette Chen’s artwork Tropical Fruits.

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#SmallBigDreamersAtHome
Photograph: National Gallery Singapore

#SmallBigDreamersAtHome

Kids Singapore City, Raffles Place

Got #SmallBigDreamersAtHome? While there are plenty of things to do to keep 'em active tykes busy, it's never too early to expose your little ones to art. Add some colour to the kids' stay-home routine with the digital spin of National Gallery Singapore's biennial children's festival Small Big Dreamers where they can tap into their imagination with creative play including interactive games, guided art tutorials, and immersive art-viewing experiences at the first online art festival in Singapore. The programmes are designed to unleash their inner artist, all while learning about the inspiring artworks from Singapore and Southeast Asia, including those within the National Collection.

Adventures in Food Wonderland by Ang Ku Kueh Girl? and Friends?
Photo: ION Sky

Adventures in Food Wonderland

Things to do ION Sky, Orchard

If there's one thing Singapore's known for, it's the food culture here. Inspired by local snacks, this all-new digital projection light show at ION Sky takes you on a flavourful adventure with whimsical characters like Ang Ku Kueh Girl, Roti Prata Boy and Kueh Lapis Girl. Follow them as they do all they can to defend their Food Wonderland. Get your tickets for the show via the ION Orchard Mobile app or over the Concierge counters. Simply spend a minimum of $20 per receipt at the mall to redeem an ION Sky ticket.

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