Thinking, Learning and Training

I am glad to have been given the opportunity to contribute a chapter to the book Thinking, Learning and Training. This was a project initiated by Siew Ning, a lecturer at SMU.

I expanded on an idea which I had first written here in this blog. Using the concept of Person-centred Care, I consider how this idea might apply to teaching and learning.

There was a limited print run for this book and proceeds from sales were contributed to an organisation supporting those with cerebral palsy.  I feel honoured to have been a part of this worthy cause. 

The book was published in December 2016 and has sold out.

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AFCC Teachers Congress

IMG_6150What is being done and could be done by teachers in the area of literacy and beyond? The Asian Festival of Children’s Content‘s 2-day Teacher Congress over the weekend offered a range of sessions to learn from. From multicultural picture books to dictionaries, poetry to dyslexia, scriptwriting to Moluccan music – the variety was most exciting.

Here are my brief notes:


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AFCC Writers and Illustrators Conference


Beautiful Picture Books from Indonesia

Spoilt for choice.

That’s how it felt at the Asian Festival of Children’s Content‘s Writers and Illustrators Conference that ran from 17 to 19 May. There were 6 segments for each day and an average of 4 to 5 tracks per segment. There were also free events such as book launches and readings at the Plaza. This year’s country of focus is Indonesia and the special booth showcasing Indonesian books was fabulous.

It was also fantastic to catchup with friends, especially those who attended the retreat. This would usually happen during the lunch and tea-breaks, and the food was good too.

Here are my notes from the sessions I attended.

Looking forward to the AFCC Teachers Congress over the weekend.

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AFCC Writers and Illustrators Retreat


Glorious Sunrise at Angsana Bintan, venue of the Retreat

It was such an honour to have been selected to attend this year’s Asian Festival of Children’s Content‘s Writer and Illustrator Retreat over the past 4 days. The time spent with the 3 amazing mentors and the other wonderful writers and illustrators was certainly most enriching.

Holly Thompson,  Sayoni Basu and Amy Ng shared from their rich experience and also conducted workshops as well as one-to-one and small group mentoring sessions. They were approachable, knowledgeable and offered candid and honest comments and suggestions.

The participants came from a range of nationalities as well as such diverse backgrounds and experience. Over the many opportunities to interact and work together, we were not only able to move our own work forward, we have made good friends.

I visually recorded my experience, thoughts and reflections as best as I could and I enjoyed the process as well.

I am looking forward to attending the rest of the Festival and also towards where my journey as an illustrator-writer will take me.

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A Spot of Art


Art as process and as a way to unwind have always been important to me in both my own explorations and in my invitation to others to try it out for themselves. Being able to make art digitally definitely opens up new vistas of explorations as a new medium, with new freedoms and features, and of course a cheap and almost endless supply of canvases to work on.

Digital collaging is something I am playing with. Using a piece I did using some extra paint (going for no/low waste), and in very Eric Carle style, I created a digital collage using the Procreate app on the iPad with Apple pencil.

Besides being able to easily position the pieces before “pasting” down, it is also possible to experiment with cutting the shapes over and over again, and to duplicate, to lighten and darken, to change the colours, and so on. Does it make it less of a collage?

As is normally my approach, I started with just a petal and built from there rather than having a specific final picture in mind.


Did the colour combinations work well? Could I have just created the “base” piece digitally as well to create this? What would be different?

This was created over about 2 hours, with the radio playing on my iPad. In ways similar and different from creating a physical collage. Named this “Teatime Chat” and this represents part of my chat I guess.

Would anyone be keen to try out a guided session to experience this for yourself?


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Finding Duckie


I was amused by how a fellow TinyTapper used the Shape Puzzle feature and went about creating this hide-and-seek story like those books with flip-up windows.

As always, the creating process was fun.

The illustrations were created using the Inkpad app on the iPad, and I do like how Duckie turned out, don’t you? I also put my bicycle horn to use too.

For content, I have woven in colours, shapes and fruits into this simple story. Is that an overload? Will the little ones catch the subtle humour? Play it and let me know, won’t you?

What modifications would I need if this were to be done in other languages?

(Printables from this game is available here:

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A Delightful Decade

pauseability signPauseability was registered with ACRA on 1 May 2007. So, today marks the 10 year milestone. A good juncture for some reflections, thanksgiving and celebrations.

I started off on this journey of learning more about innovation and enterprise through experience with a gung-ho attitude and a hope to do something that would make a difference, and little else in terms of knowledge.  Perhaps a tad too idealistic.

For the first two years, Pauseability was an arts studio with a difference. A welcoming space for experimenting and expressing with art. I dare say it was a novel concept back then, and is perhaps still an unusual idea. Getting the word out was more difficult than today. It did grow, very gradually, but not fast enough to make it financially sustainable. It was a beautiful space. Made many good friends and sweet memories. The monthly Artist Trading Card session which started then is still running today at Bishan Library.

It also gave me opportunities to try out other things such as teaching with Singapore Polytechnic and NIE. When I closed the studio, I continued the work of as a consultant. Emergenetics, an insightful tool, was something I offered. Facilitation and training among adults was a different field from working with young ones. Oddly, it soon became apparent that being a school leader often made little difference in trying to clinch a deal outside of the education circle.

Getting to work alongside Apple with teachers, and also the wonderful app TinyTap, to see how educational technology can value add has been a thrill for “multimedia” (my nickname in the first school I taught in) me.

Later, when presented with my first ever chance to work overseas, I am so grateful for the opportunity to be part of the Stamford School community in beautiful Bandung for 3 years.

In all this time, I was able to explore my interest in creativity and illustrations. The many projects that I embarked on have been such a privilege and joy whether events (such as  organising a film screening), products (such as the sweet Peranakan paper doll), publications (like the colouring-doodling book and Creative Cool Cat), workshops, communities and websites (like ATC@Bishan and Asian Picture Books).

A most precious lesson for me through these years has been that God is indeed my sufficiency. The various opportunities of work and people that I met are testament to God’s provision and authorship of my life and faith.  To God I cling and pray that my life is used for His ultimate purpose.

Of course, I am also thankful for the many many friends I have come to know and my supportive family; each of you have enriched me in your unique special way.

Grateful for pauseability thus far, and many more ahead.

Pause full colour

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