Saturday, July 18, 2009

Were you in St. Mathew Kindergarten before?


With a new whitewash, this quiet building stood along Neil Road, directly facing Everton Road at the T-junction. Once upon a time, this hall must have been resonating with the giggling, singing and even shouting of the kids as they responded to their teachers' questions or encouragement. During its hey days, St. Matthew Kindergarten, probably one of the better known kindergartens of that time, was popular with the residents of Chinatown.

Although it was situated on the "outskirt" of Chinatown, it was not too far away. Known to the Cantonese as Seng Mah Tai, I assumed that it must have been a school for those who could afford. My family could not afford and by the time I knew about the kindergarten, I was already in primary school.

I had one opportunity to visit the kindergarten during its open house and I was already in Primary one. I was already out of place as I joined the kids in doing colouring. That was in 1960.

I am sure, many of the Chinatown residents (kids then), when they pass this now quiet building, they must have good memories of their childhood days. They would probably be telling their grandchildren about their days as tiny tots. Most, if not all, would be been in the baby-boomer generation.

10 comments:

Bagel said...

hihi, i used to study there for K1! then my dad did not quite like the idea of me singing hymns when i return home, so i went to queen's street cc for K2... not sure i remembered correctly, think it's called rochor cc now. :) how time flies... thanks for the blog!

Axel said...

Wich is the actual use of this building?
Tks

chinatownboy said...

Presently? I think it is closed.

Rolland said...

I was in St. Mathew Kindergarten in 1958/59. Anyone at that age?

QuEeN oF NeThErWorLd said...

My cousin & I were frm St. Mathew Kindergarten starting frm 1992/1993 during our nursery times till we were K2. Sad that it's under enbloc now.. :(

Rarely_Blog said...

Hi, I was there for K1 and K2 between 1967 to 1968. I had such fond memories of this kindergarten. Classes were conducted in Cantonese and/or Mandarin. The building shown in this photo was actually my K2 classroom!
I remember going to the chapel for chapel sessions, I think either Monday or Wednesday mornings. During recess, kids would rush to try to get on the tricycles, which were popular. Those who couldn't get on the tricycles, and that's often because of the limited number, had to contend with playing "catching" or on a swing. Food and drinks were provided to us during recess. My parents weren't rich but they recognized the importance of education so they sent me to this kindergarten. I was living in Bukit Ho Swee then.

bunny mum said...

Hi i came across this site while searching for preschool for my gal. this is making me feeling nostalgic...i was in St Matthew Kindergarten for nursery classes i think cos i rem a photo of me in a birthday celebration with a number 4 cake in front of me.
the memories are quite faint now...i didn't expect it to be closed.
The checked orange dress...those were the days!

Tom said...

hi. I studied here when from 1996 to 1998. I was the last batch before they actually closed. Anybody else around my time.

Jean said...

I was there from 1981 and 1982. Nostalgic

Ms Lionhead said...

Hi there all,
I was there between 1968-1970...the uniform was a blue pinafore for the girls.
I can even remember one of the teacher's name. Kan 老师.