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  • Writer's pictureShaik Basrawi

Happenings During our 2021 Bulan Bahasa

Whilst we would usually celebrate Bulan Bahasa with some live performances and activities where the children can mingle and learn first-hand, the choice was to instead do this year’s event virtually due to the threat of the ever-growing pandemic. Rather than risking the spread of Covid, we have chosen to go live on-screen so that not only our children, but parents and the public, can also view the happenings live on both our YouTube and Facebook page!

This isn’t to say that there were fewer preparations involved, however. Our Ilhamites actually started practising about two months before the event went live. Wanting to bring in a little bit extra and excitement for this year’s Bulan Bahasa, we managed to incorporate instructors from Sriwana to assist us in making our traditional dances look even more professional!

Our teachers opted to work on different types of tarian for both centres. For our centre in the west, the kids learned both Joget and Masri, while our East centre practised Inang and Zapin.

With guidance from our instructors, our Ilhamites learnt the different dance routines and even got their costumes tailored for performance day. Practice makes perfect they say, as such, our Sriwana instructors thought the dance routines to our Illhamites almost daily. We went as far as preparing the backdrop for the live event a week before it went live, to bring in more colours and excitement for our viewers.

Alhamdulillah, the performance turned out as planned!

Props to the team that made this happen, and especially to all the kids who has put in so much effort to hone their skills in order to entertain you! Our teachers were also extremely motivated to bring out the best of them and made their considerable amount of tasks seem enjoyable and manageable.

Of course, Bulan Bahasa needs more than just performances, during one segment of the show, we initiated how a wedding is done traditionally. Both our centres learned the different items involved in weddings such as bunga mangga, bunga rampai and sireh dara. It helped the kids get a better grasp of the different activities we do during weddings, and it also assisted in promoting understanding of these traditional items so that they’ll hopefully continue them in the future. Even the parents were exceedingly pleased to have their children involved where they can understand why we have such performances and why such items are used during weddings.

These activities seemed to spark interest in many of our kids. With two months of practice under their belt to make the routines flawless, some kids might have just found that dancing might be their true calling after all, which came to the attention of their parents.

With all the exposure and activities, it is safe to say that it was an enjoyable event for everyone involved – students, teachers and parents alike! Many of the parents felt proud after watching their children putting the activities into practice, making it one of the reasons why Bulan Bahasa has been such a big deal yearly for both our centres.

Yes, this year might have been a little bit different as we were not able to conduct certain activities like “rewang” in order to adhere to the safety guidelines. But I believe that the setting of this event has overall helped the children in other aspects, like getting to experience performing for a crowd virtually. We are excited to plan out more happenings for you and the kids next year.

So how do you feel our Bulan Bahasa went? Would you join us in our next Bulan Bahasa where there might be even more activities? Let us know!

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