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The month of November is here, and there’s plenty to do with the whole family. Bookmark this page as we may be updating with new information and activities. Enjoy planning the month ahead with your little ones!


Cinema: Nutcracker

Young Clara is transported into a magical world of gingerbread soldiers and an army of mice. By the looks of it, this remake of the classic ballet takes the kids on an exciting adventure. Rated P13.

Dates: In the cinema 1st November


Children’s Festival @MAG

This is a festival to foster creative and innovative thinking among children, especially on topics related to finance and economics. There will be ‘Currency Education Programmes’ for children 7 – 17 years old and ‘What is Money?’ talks (7 – 15 years old), among other interesting sessions.

Daily activities, special programmes and art classes. Full programme here.

Dates: From now until 8 December
Venue: Museum and Gallery Bank Negara Malaysia


Musical: Sherlock Holmes in The Show Must Go On

This comedy play is inspired by the London hit show The Play That Goes Wrong. It centres around a murder investigation with the famous detective Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Dr Watson taking the lead. More info here.

Date and time: 3 November, 8pm.
Venue: Cempaka International School, Damansara Heights


Family & Friends Night at Kidzania

During these special days, parents and kids can role-play together. This time the theme is the Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead, Día de los Muertos! Face painting, Calavera painting, Día de los Muertos maze and more. More info here.

Dates: 3 and 4 November, 6pm.
Venue: Kidzania


Chocolate workshop

During this family-friendly workshop, you will learn about the history of cacao, the process of chocolate-making, and how to make your own chocolate from bean to the bar. Limited spots available. Full details here.

Date and time: 4 November, 10.30am
Venue: Casa Latina and Cacao Lab


Art Discovery Tours for Kids at Ilham Gallery KL

This season’s tours will take families through the work of one of Malaysia’s most important modern artists, Latiff Mohidin. For kids aged 5 to 12 years (accompanied by a parent). More information on the tours can be found here.

03 Nov (Sat) 10:00 am–12:30 pm
10 Nov (Sat) 10:00 am–12:30 pm
10 Nov (Sat) 2:00 pm–04:30 pm
28 Nov (Wed) 10.00 am–12.30 pm

Venue: Ilham Gallery


Kids’ Deepavali at the Muzium Negara

Interesting Deepavali activities for kids at Muzium Negara. More info here.
Dates: 2 – 4, 7 & 10 November 2018 from 10 am – 12.30pm and 2.30pm – 5pm.
Venue: Muzium Negara


Fun play farming at Mari House

A fun way for young kids to learn about farming, with an added bonus of outdoor play. They also get to prepare their ‘farm-to-table’ dessert for the picnic later, all prepared and set up by the Mari House team. More info here.

Dates: 3, 6, 10, and 20 November, 9.30 am
Venue: Mari House, Rawang


Cinema: The Crinch

The yuletide-loathing Grinch finds it unbearable to watch the neighbouring village of Whoville celebrating Christmas and comes up with a plot to ruin their merry season.

Dates: In the cinema 8 November


Puppetry: The Story of Ah Loy

Urbanscapes 2018 brings us Warung Panggung, a street puppet theatre on wheels! Moving in various locations throughout downtown KL with a modular cart, MUKA Space and the Malaysian Puppetry Association bring you the family-friendly, reimagined story of Ah Loy. More info here.

Dates and times: (12 shows)
3 & 4, 10 & 11, 17 & 18 Nov – 4.30pm & 6.30pm

Venues:
First Weekend: Pesta Lorong Hang Kasturi
Second Weekend: Medan Pasar
Third Weekend: RIUH River of Life KL


Deepavali celebration

Performances by Colour of Voices and a Bhangra dance troupe. More info here.
Date and time: 11 November, 4pm
Venue: Bandar Rimbayu by IJM Land


Theatre: Aliens Love Underpants

The hilarious tale based on the best-selling children’s book by Claire Freedman comes to life on stage. You can expect effects, madcap action, original music – and lots of aliens of course. More information here.

Dates: Opens 13 November, various shows. Relaxed Performance on Sunday, 25 November.
Venue: PJ Live Arts


Cinema: Ralph breaks the Internet

The new film picks up from the events of ‘Wreck-It Ralph’. Six years on, Ralph and Vanellope, now friends, discover a wi-fi router in their arcade and end up on a new adventure.

Dates: In the cinema 22nd November


Lottie’s Science Adventure

This year’s celebrations will be themed STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics, bringing together science enthusiasts under one roof. More info here.

Date and time: 23-25 November, 10am – 10pm
Venue: Lot 10


Pantomime: Aladdin

The KL Players’ popular pantomime production tells the story of a young, carefree boy, Aladdin, who dreams of riches and marrying the beautiful Princess of China. Aladdin soon finds himself on an epic adventure filled with genies, zombies and Old Auntie Nor. Event details here.

Dates and times: 29 and 30 November at 7.30 PM, 1 December 1pm.
Venue: St Joseph’s Institution International School, PJ.


Jumbo Camp by NEC

A kids’ weekend camp that focuses on studying wildlife and how they interact with their ecosystems. Kids will join volunteer work at the Elephant Conservation Centre, Kuala Gandah, and get a chance to learn through other hands-on activities: nature walk, river scientist, nocturnal walk, games and more. For kids aged 8-15. More info here.

Dates: 30 November – 2 December (Friday to Sunday)
Venues: FRIM-MNS Nature Education Centre, Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM) Kepong, Selangor and Elephant Conservation Centre, Kuala Gandah.


School holiday camps

The school holidays are getting closer! For a comprehensive list of school holiday camps, head over to Happy Go KL.


 

This post is a collaboration between makchic and Happy Go KL. 
Happy Go KL is the go-to site for fun family activities in KL and kid-friendly travel in Asia. It is written by a bunch of KL parents who want to share what they know and love about their hometown and this beautiful region.

In a flash, we are now in October! Here’s what is happening this month, so bookmark this page as we may be updating with new information. Enjoy planning the month with your little ones!

 

Taman Tugu trails open

2 km of trails are now open to the public at Taman Tugu, located to the north of Taman Botani Perdana. Suitable for everyone!

More info can be obtained from Friends of Taman Tugu.


Cinema: Smallfoot

This film turns the Bigfoot legend upside down. A bright young Yeti finds something he thought didn’t exist—a human. News bring uproar to the Yeti community, as well as adventure and laugh-out moments for the audience.

Date: In cinemas 27 September


Nights of Fright 6

Sunway Lagoon’s Festival of Fear returns scarier than ever for this Halloween. The theme park will have extra, haunted attractions during this period. Not for the faint hearted! Read more here.

Dates & times: Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday 28 September – 31 October, 7.30 pm to 11.30 pm


The Cooler Lumpur Festival

Head on over to Kuala Lumpur’s ever fascinating multidisciplinary festival this year. If you want to introduce your older children to important issues such as children’s rights and gender equality – this is the place to be! There will be posters on #NoBridesUnder18, completed works by Fahmi Reza and the Girl Guides Association Malaysia, as well as the special panel on women’s and children’s rights called ‘Who Run The World?’  Speakers include Thammy Chong from the Girl Guides Association of Malaysia, Marianne Clark-Hattingh of Unicef Malaysia and Hannah Ellis-Petersen from The Guardian.

From terrarium-making to woodwork to IoT workshops, there will also be something for everyone in the collaboration ME.REKA at the ME.REKA Makerspace. Some workshops are open to children aged 6 and above, and some others are open to children aged 12 and above. Click here for the list of workshops!

Dates: 1 – 7 th October, 2018

Venue: Map @ Publika

More information here.


DIY Terrarium Workshop

Create your own terrarium to take home. Suitable for adults, teens and kids. Details here.

Date: 6 October
Time: 11 am – 12.30 pm
Venue: Good Times DIY Baking & Lifestyle Cafe, MyTOWN Shopping Centre


Short+ Sweet Junior Dance

Local dance troupes put on their best performance at klpac, with short 5-minute pieces. All dancers are 16 & below. More info here.

Dates: 6 to 7 October (Sat & Sun)
Time: 3pm (2 shows only)
Venue: Pentas 2, The Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre (klpac)


 

The Man Who Planted Trees

Puppet theatre for kids! An inspiring story of a shepherd and his dog who plant a forest, acorn by acorn, transforming a barren wasteland into living forest. This hilarious, award-winning production shows us the difference one man (and his dog!) can make to the world. Suitable for children aged 6 and above. More info here.

Dates: Kuala Lumpur 8-13 October
Venue: PJ Live Arts


 

Mix It Up!: Making Reading Fun by Racheal Kwacz

A morning of fun for the kids and parents: tips from a parenting coach on how to make the most out of story times, interactive storytelling and hands-on activities. Participants get to take home their very own copy of the book! More info here.

Date: 13 October
Time: 10 – 11.30 AM
Venue: Me Books @ UBSM, The School, Jaya One


River Scientist Programme by NEC

During the day the kids will get to know about freshwater ecosystems. Participants will be given water monitoring kits and they will examine the water quality. They will also be catching things that live in water! For kids aged 5-12. Full details here.

Date: 7 October
Time: 9 AM – 1.30 PM
Venue: FRIM-MNS Nature Education Centre, FRIM Kepong



Upin & Ipin at MPO

Malaysia’s favourite twins make their very first appearance at Dewan Filharmonik Petronas. Screening of colourful animations with ‘live’ music by the MPO. Tickets can be bought here.

Date: 14 October
Times: 2.30 PM & 4.30 PM
Venue: MPO, KLCC


Art Expo Malaysia 2018

This huge art expo is a great place to admire art from different countries, even with kids. More info here.

Dates: 12-14 October
Venue: MATRADE Exhibition and Convention Centre (MECC)


The Kuala Lumpur Eco Film Festival

The KLEFF has loads of great documentaries perfect for teens, and a few interesting workshops suitable for younger ones, too. See the full programme here.

Dates: 22-28 October
Venue: Publika


Kid’s Halloween Diving Night Camp

For kids 8 and up, this Halloween themed camp includes 2-hour scuba diving training, 1-hour Halloween-themed cooking class and dinner. Full details here.

Date: 26 October
Time: 5 PM – 8.30 PM
Venue: Scuba Mike’s


Storytelling Shakespeare: Romeo & Juliet

Last year they did a great job with Macbeth, and now the KL Shakespeare Players move on to Romeo & Juliet. The 60-minute interactive storytelling is meant for 7-12 year-olds. It includes some of Shakespeare’s language and is designed for the young audiences to sing, dance and chant along. Full details here.

Dates and times: 27 October at 11 AM and 28 October at 15 PM
Venue: Menara Ken, TTDI


Spooktacular & Fun Halloween Camping in the Woods

A 2D1N camping trip to Janda Baik. Suitable for kids over 4 years old. Participants need to bring their own tents and other equipment. More information here.

Dates: 27-28 October
Time: Check in at 2 PM, check out at 12 noon the next day


Mushroom Detective

Who knows what a mycologist does? This workshop is all about mushrooms! The kids will go for a mushroom walk in forest, identify and get to know the mushrooms found on the trail, and learn how to grow their own mushrooms! For kids aged 5-12. Full details here.

Date: 28 October
Time: 9 AM – 1.30 PM
Venue : FRIM-MNS Nature Education Centre, FRIM Kepong


This post is a collaboration between makchic and Happy Go KL. 
Happy Go KL is the go-to site for fun family activities in KL and kid-friendly travel in Asia. It is written by a bunch of KL parents who want to share what they know and love about their hometown and this beautiful region.

Preparing meals is an important life skill for both boys and girls and there’s no better way for them to learn than from their own parents and in the comfort of their own home.

Based on my few years of experience,  a great wealth of benefits are derived when the family cooks together.

For parents who are stretched, this is a great way to squeeze in some nurturing, quality time with your kids.

I have two boys. Determined to raise them as feminists, my husband and I began  cooking with the kids when they turned two.  This special time spent together can be made more rewarding by following some simple steps.

1. Anticipate spills, thrills and delays

It will look nothing like the pictures in the recipe books, but will taste delicious. How do you like the look of our blueberry pastries?

From the beginning, manage your expectations.

It is inevitable that when you’re cooking with the kids, it will take double the time and effort to get meals ready. The children are still learning the ins and outs of food preparation.

Their motor skills are still developing and there might be things that they are not ready to handle on their own. Things might get messy, tip over or land on the floor.

The kids might even get cheeky and playful with the kitchen utensils. Ingredients such as chocolate chips may mysteriously disappear, so a good precaution is to double such delights when using them.

Finally, if you love pinning and instagramming, know that not everything that comes out of the oven initially will be insta-worthy.

However, take heart. As the kids progress and get older, they will become more adept and and less clumsy around the kitchen.

2. Keep calm and smile in emergencies

Some serious Jedi master cutting skills at work.

Burns, cuts, slips. You name  it, we’ve had it. Please equip yourself with knowledge on  how to use a knife and how to treat minor burns and cuts before you start cooking with the kids. This will help you stay calm when the inevitable happens.

I’ve also found it helpful after calmly treating an injury (although freaking out in my head), to take a short break before getting back to the task at hand.  In my experience, they will get back to the job, although with trepidation.

Persevere and all concerned will be less fazed with the next accident. Kids are resilient and will soon learn that this is part and parcel of cooking.

Having braved through a few accidents, our eight-year-old can now independently serve up a salad, albeit with  haphazardly chopped tomatoes and cucumbers.

Our six-year-old can happily make omelettes for his elder brother (who will only eat eggs in this form, and cooked by his sibling).

3. Make it exciting and seize teachable moments

Cream cheese is another ingredient that may end up in the children’s mouth before it reaches the mixing bowl.

When you cook with the kids, get them involved in the whole process from beginning to end. Look up recipes together and read through them. Our favourite site for recipes is Tasty.

We choose recipes based on  the ease of preparation, the cost and availability of ingredients. We prepare the shopping list and buy the groceries together. They learn so many things through this process: decision making, writing lists, how to choose fresh ingredients, counting the cost, purchasing and teamwork.

We give them many reminders too.

Before we cook with the kids, we remind them that a good chef is also one that tidies up.  We work alongside them to clean up as we cook and this helps the kitchen stay “reasonably” chaos free.

Part of the fun is to devise ways to reduce cleaning up. This has led to the unintended benefit of learning measurements and Maths. For example, when baking we use one large stainless-steel measuring bowl that doubles up as a mixing bowl. So, if a recipe requires 300g flour and 100g sugar, they would have to work it out that the final measurement would be 400g on the weighing machine when they add in the sugar.

4. Make room for creative expression

Neil created this recipe of oats, butter, strawberry jam, ikan bilis, tau sa peah, water. Heated for two minutes in the microwave – all his favourite ingredients. This was for his friends’ friends in preparation for his playdate.

After making his first breakfast pancake with his father,  our then five-year-old began to regularly churn out his own versions. It usually had a mix of his favourite oats, soy sauce, eggs, marmite, flour, salt, sugar, honey, olive oil and sesame oil.

In an effort not to waste food, we would fry them as pancakes and serve them with other dishes at dinner. His brother would uncharitably label these creative expressions  as “elephant poo”,  but some of them turned out surprisingly tasty.

In an effort to gently steer his exploratory journey, we eventually learnt how to make Pajoen (Korean pancakes).

When you cook with the kids, avoid trying to fit them in a box. Recipes are great in the beginning but should not hamper their culinary exploits. Let them explore if they have it in them. You never know where it will lead.

Give it a go!

If you’re convinced your kids are ready to work with you in the kitchen, go ahead and make arrangements for this fun, family time.

To start you off, try this fail proof puff pastry recipe that we made numerous times for grandparents, aunts and friends. It uses readily available ingredients such as frozen puff pastry, blueberries/chocolate chips, cream cheese, vanilla  and sugar.

Once our own kids were familiar with pastry it was easy for them to confidently make with us this vegetarian cheese and onion roll  and also this  beef sausage roll.

Remember: Start small and with simple recipes. Add dollops of reminders and instructions. Stir in cupfuls of life lessons. Sprinkle with kindness and love. The finished product should be filled with confidence and ready to take off in its own direction!