HEROES MADE AT HOME

Coronavirus: Couple use time at home to make YouTube videos to engage son and educate others

One developed a website to give hawker stalls a greater online presence. Another held a film screening and post-session discussions online to recapture the communal experience of cinema. The Sunday Times speaks to five groups who have responded to circuit breaker measures in creative ways that have made Singaporean lives a tad better.

Dr Mani Chugh, Dr Gaurav Chugh and their son Hridhaan are behind Little Hearts-Super kids, a YouTube channel with education videos voiced over by Hridhaan.
Dr Mani Chugh, Dr Gaurav Chugh and their son Hridhaan are behind Little Hearts-Super kids, a YouTube channel with education videos voiced over by Hridhaan.PHOTOS: COURTESY OF MANI CHUGH

Between trying their best to stay positive while cooped up at home and missing their friends, Dr Mani Chugh and Dr Gaurav Chugh found time to give their only child his digital debut.

Three-year-old Hridhaan Chugh, who is still in Nursery 2, now has his own YouTube channel - Little Hearts-Super kids - on which he teaches viewers about interesting facts and the coronavirus.

His mother draws the illustrations by hand while he provides the voice-over - an activity he likes to do as he is an avid reader, said Dr Mani, a senior scientist at Procter & Gamble.

"As the virus situation around us started to change rapidly, I wanted to come up with a meaningful way of engaging our son at home... He loves the recording sessions and the whole video-making process is fun and engaging," she said.

They have posted three videos since their first on April 6.

The first two provided answers to questions such as "What are snowflakes?" and "Where do stars go in the morning?".

The third, which was posted on April 20, addresses the coronavirus situation directly.

"Today I will tell (you) about coronavirus in a super simple way," says Hridhaan in the video.

"I know we feel bored sitting at home as we are not supposed to go outside. I know it can be boring. That's why I have come up with exciting activities to do," he goes on to say.

 
 
 
 

Each video takes about four to five hours to produce, Dr Mani said, and the entire process is done on an iPad using in-built apps such as iMovie.

The videos have been circulated among their family, friends, colleagues and others. The first one garnered 380 views.

Making the videos has allowed the family to spend more time together and it has become a new activity replacing playtime at the playground.

"Since our channel is still quite new, I am hoping that with time and more content, views and subscribers will increase, which will continue to motivate our son to record more fun videos for kids as well as develop himself in the process."

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on April 26, 2020, with the headline 'Making YouTube videos to engage son and educate others'. Print Edition | Subscribe