Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Adventures at Singapore Philatelic Museum

Right after our adventure at the National Museum of Singapore, we took a short walk to the Singapore Philatelic Museum, since it’s so close by. EV went there recently with her school, but she happily went again to be the guide for AA, who has never been there before.

The highlight for this trip has to be the Shaking It With Shakespeare exhibition, which is held in celebration of the bard’s 400th birthday. In that small little room, the folks at Singapore Philatelic Museum were able to squeeze in so much information of one of the world’s greatest writers.

From an introduction of who he is and the life he lead during the period he lived in, 

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To an interactive ‘pull-out’ display of this playwright and poet’s plays and sonnets, 

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To a display of the objects, both exotic and everyday, from Shakespeare’s times

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To a display of magical spells and cures from the Tudor Times,

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And even a feature of words, phrases and insults invented by Shakespeare that we still use today, EV and AA learnt all about this talented wordsmith whose works still influence today’s society.

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In fact, EV recognized a picture depicting a scene from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which she read about from one of her storybooks. She was quite delighted. At the words and phrases features, she understood what the phrase ‘to catch a chill’ meant, and when told it was invented by Shakespeare many hundreds of years ago, she was visibly impressed.

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In a separate area outside the room, EV and AA could see stamps from around the world that featured Shakespeare, and also the many plays and movies that were inspired by Shakespeare’s plays.

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They listened to how people spoke during that time, and also the different types of music then. They also saw costumes used in a Romeo & Juliet ballet production, and AA even tried dressing up as a Shakespearean character, though he refused to have me take his photo.

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We moved upstairs, and another highlight was the More Than Monkeys exhibition.

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Here, stamps depicting primates are featured, and there are even showcases of personalities such as chimpanzee expert Jane Goodall and legendary characters such as Sun Wu Kong. EV and AA also saw how primates are physically similar to us humans in terms of physical structure.

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In celebration of Singapore’s 50 Years, there is also the Singapore Journey: 50 Years Through Stamps exhibition, showcasing the country’s development.

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Just opposite this exhibition is a small display of how food was kept and cooked in the olden days.

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Of course, EV had to bring AA through the permanent exhibits, such as the Orange Room, and the Room of Rarities, where AA saw what a post box look like in the past, and the equipment used to postmark letters. 

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There have been some changes to the Heritage Room, since I last visited with EV. The wooden clogs area has been removed and now replaced by a display of spices. Instead, the wooden clogs are now used as a decorative piece, which is sad, because kids can have so much fun experiencing walking in clogs. The musical instruments have also been removed, which again is quite a pity because it can be quite an engaging experience for kids.

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The teh tarik table is still there.

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The interactive video depicting traditional trade routes in the 19th century is also not working, and instead, there are more spices on display there.

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Overall, while the Heritage Room still has some history, it isn’t as engaging as it was before.

Overall, the trip to the Singapore Philatelic Museum was educational. The Shaking It With Shakespeare exhibition was well put together, simple and engaging enough for everyone, young and old, Shakespeare fan or not, to appreciate the talent of this acclaimed writer from the Tudor times, who is still relevant today in more ways than we know.

Shaking It With Shakespeare
Level 1
Now till 15 Jan 2017

More Than Monkeys
Level 2
Now till 16 Oct 2016

The Singapore Journey: 50 Years Through Stamps
Level 2
Now till 16 Oct 2016

Orange Room (Level 1), Room of Rarities (Level 2), The Heritage Room (Level 2)
Permanent exhibitions

Time: 10am – 7pm
Admission: Adult $6, Child $4, free admission for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents
Find out more here


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  1. I like it that your kids looked really interested to learn. Exhibits that you can see, hear, touch are the best for learning. I can't wait till my kids grow older to bring them to these places! :)

    Vivien ( Beautiful Chaos )

    1. Thanks for visiting! Yes, it's really heartening to see young kids to interested. Engaging them in the sensorial way is the best way.

  2. Am glad kids get to be exposed to the great William Shakespeare! I never had much exposure to him growing up in Malaysia... thus making me not have much interested in poems...

    Jamie (http://karmie080808.blogspot.sg)

    1. Yup.. I just thought that it will be nice for them to know that many phrases that we use today is actually thanks to Shakespeare. Surprising thing is, my girl remembered, and when she saw the exhibition banner yesterday, she pointed to it and said 'Shakespeare!'. At least she remembered something. Hahaha.. Thanks for visiting!

  3. I am interested in the Shaking Up with Shakespeare and the 50 Years of Singapore in Stamp. I love Shakespeare and I like that they expose kids on Shakespeare at an early age so they can appreciate it. I love to check out the stamps especially the older ones

    1. You should definitely check it out. It's quite fun! Thanks for visiting!

  4. I love this place but haven't brought my kids there yet. Will find a day and bring them there. Thanks for sharing the details!

  5. Now, this is something that I would love to check out MYSELF! A little to young for Laurent now but if they run it when he is a little older, I'l;l definitely bring him along :) thanks for sharing!

    1. Hahaha.. I wanted to check it out by myself too.. but thought I shouldn't leave the kids out. Quite surprised at how kid friendly it is too! Thanks for visiting!

  6. My hub & I went a couple of years back but that was before having my boy..been contemplating to bring him but not sure if he can truly appreciate it yet..hee =)

    1. The place is actually quite kid friendly, lots of things to touch, see and hear. Surprisingly, so is the Shakespeare exhibition. I don't think my kids truly appreciated it, but I guess it's kind of an exposure? Thanks for visiting!

  7. I love museums but I think my kids are still too young at this point to appreciate the exhibits. This is definitely a place to check out either by myself or when they get older.

    1. It definitely is! I didn't realise how interesting it was until I visited, and you're right.. the older kids might appreciate it more. Thanks for visiting!

  8. Insults from Shakespeare? This is something new for me.

    cheers, Andy

    1. Hahaha.. yes Andy, it was something new to me too. Apparently, Shakespeare came up with some of the best insults. Problem is, the recipient of today may not totally get it. Hahaha.. Thanks for visiting!

  9. We were there last year during Snoopy, Charlie Brown and the peanut gang exhibition. It's time to visit again. Thanks for sharing

    1. Definitely! You should visit soon! Thanks for visiting!


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