Young Khalsa pitches bonding and healthy lifestyle

K. JANARTHANAN

Less judgment, more inclusivity.

This was the main theme of the activities for young children and their parents, organised by the Singapore Khalsa Association's (SKA) Young Khalsa (YK) committee, last Sunday.

To promote team bonding and a healthy lifestyle, YK conducted an indoor hockey session for 20 children aged five to 11.

The coaches got the boys and girls interested in the sport, and guided them on the correct technique to use, such as how to hold the hockey stick and control the ball.

"To make the event more inclusive, we customised the drills according to the different age groups," said Lucas Baron, one of the coaches. "We wanted everyone to enjoy the game."

Ishan Singh, seven, said it was a fun session. "I enjoyed playing hockey," the boy said. "And I made many new friends."

Ryanvir Singh, eight, who was picking up a hockey stick for the first time, said he liked the sport and would be open to pursuing it seriously in future.

The YK event also saw a workshop for parents on how to communicate with children.

It was conducted by Mrs Harveen Kaur, 37, a lecturer at Singapore Polytechnic's School of Life Skills and Communications.

She shared several pointers, including how to read non-verbal cues, framing questions in a manner that help children to share their thoughts openly, and the way to show empathy - even to bullies.

"The event was well-organised and the topics covered were very relevant to what parents experience," said IT manager Deepak Maharaj, who hails from Fiji and is married to a Singaporean.

"It also gave the parents a chance to network and share insights with one another."

Lawyer Kavitha Sandhu, an SKA member of 20 years, said the workshop taught her many things. But the most important takeaway was learning that asking the right, open-ended questions and allowing children to express their emotions clearly was the way to build resilience and empathy.

Mr Prem Singh, SKA general secretary, said YK planned to hold a second instalment of the Mindful Parenting workshop.

There will also be talks on topics such as education management, food and nutrition, with plans to arrange up to four such sessions in a year.

"In addition to our monthly storytelling and parenting workshops, we hope to organise a Family Day to bring the parents and children together, and further enhance the bond between them," he said.

janark@sph.com.sg

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