I brought C to her first Masak Masak last year. Even though she was just 1yo, I could see and feel that she enjoyed herself very much! Seeing how she could participate and interact with these exhibits, I knew we will be coming back in 2016 and here we are! So here 5 reasons why you should also (bring your little humans to) go to Masak Masak!
#1 It’s for little humans (and the young at heart)
Masak Masak is an annual exhibition held at the National Museum as part of the Children’s Season. ‘Masak-masak’ is a Malay word that means ‘cooking pretend play’, which over time has transformed into a colloquial term referring to ‘play’. As the name implies, the exhibitions at Masak Masak is all about play. While it is an exhibition catered and designed for children, there are many interactive installations, activities and workshops suitable for the whole family to participate in!
#2 It’s colourful
Block Up! is an outdoor installations that would catch your attention upon reaching the museum. It’s so huge and so colourful that you can’t miss it. C went straight for it after we got down from the car. The idea behind this installation is building blocks. It was fun as we recapitulate about shapes, colours or simply wandering around. C enjoyed climbing into and onto the spaces. We skipped the retro blow up slide (pictured in #5) as it was a little too warm by super late morning.
#3 You can play!
Let’s Play! is a life size installation of Snakes & Ladders and Ludo, which you can participate as both the player and the pawn. You can throw the dice and move along the board. For younger kids, it might be an opportunity to learn or revise about numbers. It doesn’t matter if you don’t fancy either. Just climb up, slide down and crawl around, like what C did!
#4 Exhibits are interactive
Clumsy Dumpty on the Wall is an installation that is inspired by the shape sorter, one of C’s favourite toys to play with. What’s different is that the shapes to be sorted and fitted into the spaces are irregular so I was pretty surprised that C could get it. As long as we give them time and space to try right? The outline also lights up and a sound of approval chimes when the shape is put back in its corresponding spaces.
#5 There’s aircon and it’s free!
(Except the outdoor Block Up! exhibit) Given the weather in Singapore, I certainly enjoy the air-conditioned environment. Who doesn’t, right? The entrance to the museum is also free for all Singaporeans and PR. If you would like to visit the other in-house exhibitions, you will need to show your IC at the main counter to exchange for a sticker for entry to the other galleries. Otherwise, you are free to visit and interact with the exhibits at Masak Masak.
The mentioned exhibits are those that C enjoyed the most. There are also three others that we didn’t get to participate in. Well, either C didn’t meet the age requirement or they were a little crowded on a Friday morning, hence we decided to skip.
This is a very fun and interactive station for the older children (5-12yo) who are able to cycle/pedal. By pedalling on the bicycles, you are able to make use of the kinetic energy generated to create artworks at the Bike SpinArt, blow up a ballon at the Bike Balloon Blower, and to create bubbles at the Bike Bubbler.
Inspired by creatures from the majestic animal kingdom and beyond, 14 French artists and designers created their own imaginary zoo of unexpected, abstract and hyper-realistic animals*. Besides the animals on display, you can also pretend play as your favourite animal by purchasing a decorate-your-own-animal mask kit at a suggested fee of $2.
*Texts from National Museum’s website
Toysaurse (from June 2016)
This colourful exhibit is created with toys from the artist’s toy exchange programme. Visitors are also invited to interact with and build on the artwork by contributing their own unwanted toys to the existing installation.
Personally, I feel that Masak Masak 2015 was more impressive, more colourful and of a slightly larger scale than this year’s. Nonetheless, this year’s exhibits are more fun and interactive for C at 2yo. Since the entrance is free, we will certainly revisit, especially for Toysaurse and the others that we didn’t get to participate.
Masak Masak 2016
National Museum of Singapore
28 May 2016 – 31 Jul 2016
10am – 6pm