Hundreds race to learn Brunei history

National 2 minutes, 40 seconds


MORE than 350 people yesterday started the first challenge of the Museums Race Brunei to explore the country’s past and cultural heritage through scavenger hunts and riddle-solving.

The first of the race’s three challenges kicked off at the Jerudong Park Garden, with the next two challenges to be held in the following Sundays before winners are crowned.

Hjh Kolam Hj Abd Gapar, coordinator of Museums Race Brunei, said participants will be involved in games and activities as a fun way to learn about the Museums Department’s operations.

The race was held to mark the Museums Department’s Golden Jubilee, having started as the Civic Centre in 1965.

In an interview on the sidelines of the race, Hjh Kolam said there are 89 participating teams of four people.

“We want people to learn about the department’s work, to educate them about the processes and operations at the department,” she added.

She said the race hoped to change the public’s mindset of the department.

“The department does not just showcase artefacts, there are many things done by the department, such as conserving the artefacts.

“Our approach now is to get more public participation because they need to know about our heritage and foster an interest of our local history,” added Hjh Kolam, who is also a curator at the Museums Department.

The race is also aimed at attracting more visitors to museums and promoting public awareness on historic and heritage sites.

Director of Museums Pg Dr Karim Pg Hj Osman said the race hopes to promote active learning among students through quizzes, physical activities and taking part in the department’s operations.

Practical activities will instil more interest in learning compared with a traditional textbook education, he told The Brunei Times.

“Museums are often seen as venues where ancient artefacts are just being displayed. But there’s more to it because the museum is a place to strengthen your knowledge about our local history,” he said.

He said schools should use active learning in classes, as it will attract students.

“This education system is good because students will be more active in learning because they’ll be having fun. They’ll be more motivated in the classes, as they will be more interested in the topic and activity,” he said.

The event manager of the run, Aaron Goh, the founder of Heroes Event Management, said active learning is important, as students will be more intrigued with their education.

“It’s a fun way to learn and can be used for any subject while strengthening your teamwork, communication and community because it’s a physical and challenging experience,” he said.

While he believes active learning is a great option for providing students an in-depth education, he noted that traditional textbook teaching shouldn’t be forgotten.

“Active learning isn’t just through words; it involves fun educational activities that people take part in to learn more, which I recommend and encourage schools to occasionally use because it’s the best way to learn,” he said.

Permanent Secretary of Culture, Youth and Sports Dato Paduka Dr Hj Affendy Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Hj Abidin launched the race.

The Brunei Times