Singapore, 12 November 2016 – For the first time, the Lifelong Learning Festival 2016 (LLF 2016), will be held over a two-week period with a range of activities planned across the island. The festival is aimed at building a culture of lifelong learning in support of the SkillsFuture Movement. With the theme “Every Day A Learning Day; By the community, with the community”, the Festival will highlight the community as important champions of lifelong learning in encouraging a culture where Singaporeans actively seek out opportunities to learn, empowered and enabled by resources available within their communities.
2 First established by the Lifelong Learning Council (LLC) in 2015 as a weekend festival to inspire lifelong learning, this year’s Lifelong Learning Festival will extend into a full two-week period from 12-27 November. It will begin with a weekend of activities at the Lifelong Learning Institute (LLI) followed by a range of community-led activities for all ages, held at various locations across the island.
3 Mr Tan Kay Yong, Chairman of the Lifelong Learning Council, said, “The Lifelong Learning Council aims to build a society that embraces lifelong learning as a way of life. We encourage community-led learning initiatives, by the community, with the community, to build a mindset of continual learning. To achieve this, the Festival this year focuses on the role of the community as motivators of lifelong learning, through a two-week long event to bring lifelong learning into the heartlands”.
Highlights at the Lifelong Learning Festival
4 LLF 2016 kicks-off with a two-day event on 12 and 13 November held at the Lifelong Learning Institute with Mr Ong Ye Kung, Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) as the Guest of Honour.
5 With 62 community partners participating in this year’s festival, activities and workshops have been lined up for all age groups. The full list of participating partners can be found in Annex A.
6 One highlight at this year’s Festival is the SkillsFuture Lab, where the public can learn about the various SkillsFuture initiatives which are available to help them achieve their skills and career goals. It will incorporate two key areas – Exploration Labs and the Inspiration Lab.
7 At the Exploration Labs, individuals can visit four zones - Discover, Experience, Develop and Collaborate to learn more about how they can make informed education, training and career choices, how to get a head-start in their careers as well as how they can deepen their skills and stay relevant. Employers can also find out about opportunities for industry collaboration for jobs and training.
8 The Inspiration Lab features the stories of Singaporeans and their personal lifelong learning journeys. Those inspired can also share their own story on the spot by writing their aspirations on the panels provided and taking pictures of themselves with the panels to upload on their social media accounts.
LearnSG Seed Fund
9 Another festival highlight is the inaugural showcase of activities and innovative learning ideas by recipients of the LearnSG Seed Fund. The $3 million LearnSG Seed Fund was established by the LLC, with the support of then Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) to foster the spirit of lifelong learning within the community through supporting community-led learning projects. Since its launch in January 2016, 64 projects have been supported under the LearnSG Seed Fund. These projects range from smaller-scale learning activities spearheaded by passionate individuals to larger-scale workshops and programmes driven by organisations, imparting a wide variety of work skills and life skills. 32 seed fund recipients are participating in LLF 2016.
10 One such Seed Fund project is a 10-week Apprentice Programme run by One Maker Group which teaches participants skills in areas such as engineering and woodwork, as well as the usage of tools like 3D-printers to create their own projects. At the festival, participants can try their hand at working with leather and learn more about this artisanal leather craft.
11 The Tinker Kit is another LearnSG Seed Fund idea developed to guide parents and care-givers in nurturing a love for learning in their young children. The kit contains an activity guide and some basic materials to help parents guide their 4-8 year olds to learn through play. The guide also equips parents with tips and reading resources for them to engage their children in playful learning at home, so as to help young learners develop a healthy foundation and attitude for learning throughout their life. Parents and children at the festival can try out various activities from the kit including creating their own popsicle stick characters and making their own ‘Egg Carton Tulips’.
12 The LearnSG Seed Fund is currently open for online applications. Interested applicants can visit www.learnnow.sg/seedfund for more details.
Learning@Work Resources for Employers
13 Employers also play an important role in encouraging lifelong learning. A new resource portal for employers, Learning@Work, will be featured at the festival. Developed by the Institute for Adult Learning (IAL), the portal provides employers with an extensive range of resources to support them in building workplaces that enhance learning and performance.
14 The Learning@Work portal consists of two key sections – ‘The Index’ and ‘Learning Methods’. 'The Index’ is a fully automated and complimentary diagnostic tool that organisations can use to assess the learning conduciveness of their workplaces as experienced by employees. A system-generated report will also enable employers to gain a deeper understanding of how the workplace and the nature of work processes can create opportunities for learning.
15 With an understanding of their current state of learning, employers can tap on ‘Learning Methods’ which contain a variety of video resources that showcase best practices for improving independent learning and collaborative learning as an organisation.
16 Through Learning@Work, companies which are seeking external expertise to kick-start more structured workplace learning initiatives can also review the online profiles of Certified Workplace Learning Specialists (CWLS) and contact them directly. CWLS are trained by IAL to support enterprises in optimizing workplace learning for enhanced individual learning and organization outcomes.
Hands-On Activities at the Lifelong Learning Institute (LLI)
17 There are many other engaging and experiential activities at LLF 2016. For example, the public can try drone flying, clay creation and making music with electronics. Members of the public can also choose to sign up for workshops on a wide range of topics such as coding, workplace learning and development, and culinary arts, to get a taste of something new and even pique their interest to embark on their own learning journey.
Beyond Kick-off Weekend: Community–Led Island-Wide Learning Activities
18 Beyond the festival kick-off weekend at the Lifelong Learning Institute on 12 and13 November, the public can also participate in 63 community-led learning activities held at various locations across the island from 13 to 27 November 2016.
19 Adults and seniors can pick up both life skills and work skills by participating in activities such as ‘Learn to Make Local Dishes’, and through workshops on ‘Time Management: Work Smarter Not Harder’ and ‘Online Business: What Every Aspiring Entrepreneur Needs to Know’. Families with children can also participate in activities such as ‘Decorate a Cake with Your Family’, ‘Come & Make’ and ‘Kids Hack Day – Strawbees’ to pick up new and interesting skills as a family. A full list of these community-led activities is found in Annex B.
20 The community-led island-wide festival brings together community partners such as Health Promotion Board (HPB), Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Shatec, LliBrary, e2i, North West CDC as well as individuals who are recipients of LearnSG Seed Fund, in support of lifelong learning.
21 For more information about the activities throughout the Lifelong Learning Festival, please visit www.lifelonglearningfest.sg.