Thursday, July 18, 2013

The City - Interactive Learning Playground

Our cousins told us about The City and the photos they took aroused our own exploration itch. The girls have been wanting to go there since we told them about the place. Hence, once a window of opportunity appeared, we headed down to The City at Liang Court with Daddy and two excited girls.

Located on the 3rd floor of Liang Court, it opens daily from 10am to 7pm. The different characters on the outside of The City got the girls all excited even before we entered the place. They got carried away discussing what they wanted to be while running up and down alongside the wall it seemed like they forgot about the real deal inside the City. The mural sure is a good use of their external space.

"When I grow up, I wanna be a ...... "

Shoes were left on the racks outside and upon entry, we realized that there was a birthday party going on. A party room is available inside the City.

A flyer with package details for events and parties.

Upon stepping in, we were overwhelmed by the myraid of colours, costumes, furniture and props! Rooms were thematic, and the main hall resembled a mix between an outdoor campsite, fast food outlet and highway altogether. The room themes include a fully stocked supermarket with checkout counter and trolley baskets, a clinic, a salon, a classroom, a police station, and an  outer-space themed playground.

A panaromic view of the main hall. The rooms have large openings which makes it easy for parents to monitor their little ones without accompanying them into the room.

There is a parent's corner with chairs and tables and a sofa. There were many adults there due to the party, and the place ran out of chairs for a while. However, one of the major pros of the open concept meant that you could easily locate your little one from the parents' corner!

Another view of the main hall. This one highlights the fire-station. Can you hear the fire-man's suit and helmets calling out to you?

You camp under the stars by the lake. Just watch out for the traffic on the road next to you.

Simple snacks and refreshments are sold here, but there's more...

Note that you can place an order over the phone to Starbucks, McDonald's and Subway and have it delivered up here at no extra charge!

Here's an overview of the thematic rooms you can find here. Bear in mind that there is a standing rule that costumes and props should be kept to their respective rooms where possible.

Don't mess with the police! Next to the Police Station is an entrance to a small function room where exclusive parties and events can be held.

Outer-space and Sci-Fi themed foam room! A lot of space for our little heroes to knock some bad 'blocks'down.

Looks like a mock up play-school or kindergarten. It comes stocked with building blocks, wall charts, and a white board with markers.

This post office has its world map vandalized! Or are the scribbling just the boss's way of planning where the delivery should go next?

The mannequin heads look a little scary to me. Could it be a reason for the lack of business here?

And where did the girls spend the most time? For a pair of sisters who always love helping Mummy and Daddy out with the groceries, the supermarket was the most wonderful place in the playground. The moment they saw how well the supermarket was stocked, they picked out their trolleys, put on their 'shopping face', and immediately got down to some serious grocery picking. The products on the shelves appeared so real. Even the brands were the ones we were used to seeing at the NTUC near our place. The girls started picking up items and reading the labels, like just how Mummy does it. It helped that this room was large and came furnished with a check-out counter. The real supermarket has a few cashiers, but only one lane here meant kids had to take turns to play cashier.

These girls are serious shoppers...

"Young lady, I think you gave me the wrong amount of change... don't you learn maths in primary school? Oh wait... you're still in kindergarten."

Breakfast cereals, household items, you name it, they've got it.

Another favourite was the clinic. There was a lot more interaction going on between the children here as they took turns to play the roles of parent, patient, nurses and doctors. This room appeared to be a hit among the girls especially, as they had the chance to turn on their motherly instincts as they wheeled their sick dolls into the clinic, and described passionately the symptoms of their child that had been keeping them up all night.

Lots of interaction going on here. Isn't that a real baby in the corner? Hope he's not really here to see the doctor. None of them here have been through medical school.

It's a costume party! The girls help one another to get dressed for work.

"Yes, how may I help you?"

K. picks out some medicines from the cabinet. I hope she knows what she's prescribing!

Now its my turn to be the doctor.

A. also enjoyed playing teacher and student with a staff of the playground. The staff there are friendly and accommodating  and can  often be seen meticulously picking up props and replacing them into their respective rooms.

We spent a good two hours there before dinner came knocking at the doors of our tummies. We'll miss the place, and we sure did take with us a bag full of wonderful memories. As for Mommy and Daddy, we succeeded in taking a back seat and observing the kids from afar, and spending some quality time chatting over some drinks and a can of chips. Definitely an experience we'll recommend to parents who want to rest those weary legs.

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