Peranakan Museum

Singapore, Singapore

Peranakan Museum


The Old Tao Nan School (traditional Chinese: 舊道南學校; simplified Chinese: 旧道南学校; pinyin: Jiù Dàonán Xuéxiào) is a historic building in Singapore, located along Armenian Street in the Museum Planning Area, within the Central Area. The building was originally built for the Tao Nan School to serve the local Hokkien community, but the school has since been relocated to its current location in Marine Parade. The building was then used as a wing of the Asian Civilisations Museum, and now houses the Peranakan Museum. It was gazetted as a national monument on 27 February 1998.

Tao Nan School was set up by the Singapore Hokkien Association (Singapore Hokkien Huay Kuan) on 18 November 1906 to provide modern education for Hokkien Chinese children. It was the first Chinese school in Singapore to adopt modern subjects in its syllabus such as such as geography, history and physical education, in addition to traditional Chinese subjects such as Confucian classics that would help promote and preserve Chinese culture and values. Although it was originally set up to serve the Hokkien community, it began to accept speakers of other Chinese languages in 1909, the first Chinese school to operate such inclusive policy. Lessons were initially conducted in Hokkien with some Mandarin classes, but English lessons were also introduced in 1914. In 1916, the school became the first Chinese school in Singapore switched its medium of education from Hokkien to Mandarin.

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