WARNING! VERY BAD! "Wow! Giant Dinosaur" Expo, Oct. 2 - 10

I stole this from Taipei City Playgroup's organiser, Kelly.  Thanks, Kelly!

Dear Parents,

This exhibition is host by our city government coincide with the upcoming Floral Expo mainly a display of many different species of dinosaur. The biggest display is a 46 meter tall giant dinosaur made of traditional Taiwanese floral-prints fabric. There will be a theatre running live dino shows every hour. Also, some dinosaurs art work made by local celebrities will be on display, and soft toys and a playground area for photo shooting, a bookstore, kiosks, etc.
-Location: "Youth Park" (West end): 199 Shuiyuan Rd, Wanhua District
-Dates: 2nd ~10th October every day from 9am~6pm
Bus: 12,205,212,223,630
MRT: Ximen Station need to transit by bus to "Youth Park"
-No fee (Free)
-Name: Paper Windmill Dinosaur Art Expo "Wow! Giant Dinosaur"

The Citygroup will be planning their weekly outing there on Thursday morning, October 7th, so you are welcome to join us then too!

***UPDATE:   The kids and I went here today.  Even though it is free, it was one of the most disappointing things I have been to in Taiwan.  We are pretty open to events and activities, but this was horrid.  And very over-hyped.  Basically, a few papermache models have been thrown into the park.  In the center is an overheated room with some videos going and a couple of glass models.  It feels very old and dirty.  The "models by famous people" are permade models about 20cm high that look like they have been painted by preschoolers.  The food is water and Chinese-style rice crackers.  There is a tent with overpriced DIY kits and books.  That's it.  And to top it off, for some reason Youth Park's fishpond and stream is full of stinking dead fish.  It used to be a great place to feed ducks and fish, but now it is a green-lined wasteland.  If this a preview to the Flora Show at the end of the year, I hope nobody is flying in from overseas to see it.

Kindermusik baby class in Tienmu, starts TOMORROW!

The Community Services Center (www.community.com.tw) has a toddler class running but we'd also like to open the baby class TOMORROW, Thu Sep 30! We're looking for just two more babies for this class to open.

This will be a shorter session, a 5-week "Kindermusik Adventures" camp, from 9:15 - 10:00 on Thursdays.
If you or someone you know is interested, please have them call Grace or Rosemary at the Community Services Center, 2836-8134 or call me at 0954-05-7757
The Center is a non-profit organization offering classes, counseling, and loads of other support to the international community.

A little information about the baby class: the theme is Busy Days with 5 different sub-themes: a trip to the park, to the doctor, to the market, to the 'seashore', to a family gathering. We'll sing, dance, and make music together as we move creatively to songs and rhymes. We'll use simple percussion instruments as we play-along to Songs we sing as well as to recorded music We'll do circle dances, lap bounces and so much more. Your baby will be developing a love of music as well as his/her internal sense of steady beat, paving the way
for musical experiences in the future. We'll come together once a week to enjoy these musical moments together, but I'll also demonstrate ways that you can extend the magic of Kindermusik to your home and everyday routine.


Kaohsiung County Cultural Affairs Bureau's List of Monthly Activities

I was searching for the October performance by Hakka group Paper Windmill, and stumbled across this gem of a site.  It is an English-language listing of activities being run around Kaohsiung County, many of which are family-oriented.

If you go to the link for September, you will see a detailed list of reading sessions, movies, performances, workshops, and even cycling daytrips, that you and your family could enjoy this month.  And the information is detailed enough that a person not able to read Chinese could make it to the events easily.


Tamsui International Environmental Arts Festival 2010

Looks like lots of interesting performances will be happening in Tamsui from October 9th to October 23rd, 2010.  Lots of local and international artists will be performing.

Here's an English introduction.

Here is a schedule of events, in Chinese but with some English group names listed.

Jiayi & Ilan: Puppet Theater - Curious Po Po

October 17th and 23rd in Jiayi and then Ilan.


Banqiao: October 27, 7:30PM - Puppet Theater: The Flying Peach

Venue:  Taipei County Cultural Center, No.62, Zhuangjing Rd., Banqiao City, Taipei County 220, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
台北縣藝文中心演藝廳 ( 板橋市莊敬路62號 )

Times: November 5, 7:30pm, November 7, 3:00pm


Oct 27-31: STOMP

Not specifically for children, but I am sure there are many children who would love to see STOMP.  What child couldn't resist the banging, dancing, and tapping of a STOMP performance?

There are two 2:30pm shows - Saturday and Sunday (30th and 31st).  Tickets start at 800TWD and groups of 20 or more get 5% discount.  UPDATE: NO MORE 800TWD TICKETS AVAILABLE.  All shows are at Taipei's National Theater.

Tickets on sale online at KHAM ticketing. For some reason the link won't show properly, so you need to copy the whole link and paste it in your browser:


Ministry of Education search engine - Early Childhood Centers

I found this link to the Ministry of Education's Early Childhood website . It has a search engine where you can find all the registered private, semi-private, and public early childhood centers in Taiwan.  It is in Chinese, but is fairly easy to navigate.

You can also look for your own school's website on the URLIFE site.  I have joined their online school sites, and there is a mass of information there for people with schoolaged children.  It's going to take me a while to dig through it before I can post some English information, so I encourage you to test your Chinese and go DIY!


Join a daily English language playgroup in Taipei for 3 to 6 yr olds

A gentleman is looking to start a playgroup. I will let him do the talking:

Dear Fellow Parents

We are looking for other parents with children aged 3 to 5 who might be interested in participating in a 3 or 4 mornings a week English playgroup. Our eldest daughter is now coming up to three years old and seems desperate for more social interaction with children of her own age.

We have been considering enrolling her in a kindergarten, but:
a) for a few reasons, we don't really want to send her to a local kindergarten
b) my wife is actually the owner of a small school that is closed during the mornings, so we thought we might be able to get-together with other parents to make use of the free space

Before you get the wrong idea - this is a totally non-profit venture. We would just like to give our daughter a playgroup / school experience with children around her own age, ideally using the free facilities at my wife's school.

For your information, the school is located on Chungshiao East Road, Section 5, next to the Yungchun MRT station.
Our idea, basically, is that for 3 or 4 mornings a week, we could hold a playgroup/class at the school, supervised by a combination of a school assistant, a foreign or local teacher, and two or three other parents for additional supervision (on a rotational basis).

Regarding costs, of course the assistant and teacher would need to be paid, plus there would be a small utility fee contribution; however, compared to sending children to a regular local kindergarten, the cost would be almost neglible. At a rough estimate, if we could get a group of 10 parents together, it would cost about NT$4,500 per month per child, attending four mornings a week. Of course, the more children there are, the cheaper it is for everyone.

Anyway, this is just an idea. If anyone is interested, please leave some comments or email me. My email address is: sbmillward at gmail dot com

Best wishes to all you other hard-working parents and I hope to hear from some of you!


More discussion on this idea.