What is PAL?
PAL stands for Programme for Active Learning. It consists of modules of activities in the two broad areas, Sports and Outdoor Education, and Performing Arts (Music and Dance) and Visual Arts, which are carried out within the curriculum time.
Why is there a need to introduce PAL?
PAL is one of the recommendations of the Primary Education Review and Implementation (PERI) Committee to raise primary education to a new level. The proposed changes seek to ensure that our young are equipped not just with content knowledge, but also with the necessary skills and values to thrive in a fast-changing and globalised future.
PAL is an initiative to address the greater emphasis on non-academic programmes within the curriculum. The greater exposure to Sports and Outdoor Education, Performing and Visual Arts for all Primary 1 and 2 pupils will facilitate their well-rounded development and help in balancing knowledge with skills and values.
What are PAL objectives?
- Provide broad exposure through fun and varied activities in Sports and Outdoor Education, Performing and Visual Arts
- Facilitate the well-rounded development of pupils in the 5 learning domains (cognitive, moral, social, aesthetics, physical)
- Provide varied avenues for pupils to develop social emotional competencies
What are the characteristics of PAL?
- Experiential in nature
- Encompasses learning in a creative way
- Provides opportunities for children to create
- Incorporates character development and social emotional learning
- Fun and enjoyable
Who will carry out PAL?
JWPS teachers and service providers will conduct PAL activities for the respective areas in schools.
How will JWPS ensure the safety of pupils when carrying out PAL activities?
JWPS will adhere to the existing health and safety guidelines such as RAMS and teacher-pupil ratio requirement. All coaches, instructors and service providers would be screened before being engaged by schools to conduct PAL activities.
What are pupils expected to learn through PAL?
MOE has outlined 3 goals for PAL which provide the purpose for learning through PAL. They are:
- Pupils will exhibit confidence in what they do and express themselves effectively
- Pupils will exhibit curiosity and positive attitudes to learn
- Pupils will enjoy group experiences and teamwork
Based on the goals, there are standards which state the knowledge, skills and behaviours required of the pupils so as to achieve each goal, and benchmarks which are more specific definitions of standards indicating developmentally appropriate targets for the level.
Is PAL a form of hot-housing pupils at a young age?
PAL is to provide pupils with more opportunities to participate in activities related to Sports, Outdoor activities, Performing and Visual Arts. It is another platform to help students further discover their interests. Exposing pupils to a broad range of non-academic activities from a young age will facilitate well-rounded development.
What is the difference between PAL and Art, Music and PE lessons in the curriculum? Will PAL be duplicating these subjects?
PAL complements the academic subjects of Art, Music and PE, and provides the platform for pupils to extend, reinforce and apply their learning through a wide range of activities in Sports and Outdoor Education, Performing and Visual Arts.
To what extent can PAL modules be integrated with other PAL modules or with academic subjects?
The 4 areas, (Sports and Outdoor Education, Performing and Visual Arts) should be distinct from each other in the PAL programme as far as possible. Schools should seek the advice of the relevant MOE Specialist in each of the 4 areas on how a module in a certain area can be integrated with another. As for integrating PAL modules with academic subjects, it is not advisable to do so as the distinct characteristics of a PAL module would be diffused when it is subsumed under an academic subject.
What is the difference between PAL and CCA?
The current CCA structure provides pupils with the opportunity to specialise in a CCA of their interest. CCA is conducted outside of curriculum time over a period of 30 weeks. PAL provides pupils with broad exposure to a variety of activities in the different areas, through modules each lasting between 7 to 10 weeks.
Can pupils opt out of PAL?
Other than those with medical reasons who are exempted from some PAL activities, all Primary 1 and 2 pupils are expected to participate in PAL.
If a pupil is medically-exempted from physical activities, what will he/she do during the Sports and Outdoor Education modules?
Teachers and/or vendors conducting the PAL lesson would be able to include the pupil in the activities that are appropriate for him/her. The activities would be adapted to suit the pupil’s condition so that he/she can benefit from PAL. For example, pupils with heart problems will still be involved in the group discussions and reflections as well as have opportunities to share their experiences in the activities.
Do pupils need to pay for PAL activities?
As PAL is not an enrichment activity and it is conducted during curriculum time, students will not need to utilise any funds, for example Edusave, to pay for their participation in PAl.