If your child is good at music, dance, drama or has other talents, the Direct School Admission (DSA) programme in Singapore may be their key to enroling into an elite school. Most parents find DSA a good opportunity for their child to pursue their interests without forgoing their academics – setting them up for a higher chance of success.
Besides preparing your child for the DSA interview and studying for the written tests, it is also important that you put together a solid portfolio, showcasing your child’s talents. An effective method would be to use social media platforms such as Instagram stories, posts, reels or even saving your Instagram Live(s) to create a portfolio.
Despite the risks, social media platforms offer children many valuable opportunities to develop their skills, build engagement as well as a good digital footprint. Read on as we share more tips and benefits that can help your child get the best out of social media.
Why use Instagram as your child’s portfolio?
A portfolio, in essence, is a curated selection of your work, easily accessible and viewable by prospective schools and peers. In the past, portfolios referred to physical folders we’d carry around. These days, Instagram, with all its features, is by far the most popular visual-oriented platform. Beyond just sharing over-filtered images of your brunch, the app has become a huge and useful tool for people to showcase their talents. Introducing new features like Instagram Live to engage with your audience, Instagram reels and posts to share content. Furthermore, with over 500 million daily Instagram Stories users globally, this feature allows your child to share random snippets of their life and display them on their profile as evergreen content. Why not do the same for your child’s portfolio.
The possibilities are endless for the kind of content that you can put together on your child’s Instagram account. Here are some handy tips that you can adopt to create their portfolios:
1. Use the Instagram bio as your child’s cover letter
An Instagram bio is the first thing a visitor will see on your profile, so it is recommended that you make the copy count. For instance, you can include text that summarises your child’s goals, passions, and interests. If your child is into theatre and acting, then they can highlight this speciality or the niche work they do in their Instagram bio. With the character limitation in place, it is best to have a clear and succinct bio to tell the prospective schools who your child is, what they do and are good at.
2. Curate your child’s Instagram feed with their work
Think about how your child’s Instagram feed will appear to visitors on their profile, the style and look that they want to convey on their feed. Curate your posts and reels to create a profile that feels purposeful and thoughtful. Before posting a series of images and videos on the Instagram account, it is recommended that you ask yourself, “what type of content would the prospective school or co-curricular activity (CCA) head want to see? How can I showcase my talents and skills in a professional and clean way? Does my Instagram feed and posts look consistent?”
The first step in creating a professional portfolio is to use the same border or cropping for your Instagram posts. For instance, you can advise your child to go for a uniform colour palette or opt for a specific filter and lighting approach to use throughout. No matter the style or aesthetic your child chooses to go for, it is best to ensure that the aesthetic is consistent. Even though it is important to capture the significant moments of your child’s achievements and talents, the presentation of their Instagram posts plays a crucial role in showing prospective schools the thoughtfulness and effort that goes into it.
3. Vary the content that your child posts
When it comes to posting your child’s talents to an Instagram portfolio, having consistency and variety are key. Diversify the content on their Instagram portfolio with different posts like:
- Their best and most recent work, such as a performance or a recent photoshoot.
- Milestones that relate to their skills in school or academics.
- Behind the scenes such as Instagram reels from a performing arts class or speech and drama class
- Snippets of scripts or lyrics performed or written, and their personal reflections
Rotate through these different posts regularly to keep their Instagram active and interesting for visitors. Not only will posting regularly put your child’s talents out there, but it can also garner regular engagement and increase views from visitors. Have your child update their Instagram portfolio to ensure that they are staying connected with the online community and at the same time, showcasing their talents to potential schools.
4. Use Instagram Stories Regularly
Your child can complement their Instagram posts by adding to their Instagram Stories, which lets them create content to be live on the platform for 24 hours. Instagram stories are a fun way for your child to stay connected with their followers and supplement the more curated approach of their portfolio. This, in turn, showcases their personality and perspective, allowing prospective schools to recognise your child’s all-rounded personality.
As Instagram Stories can now be saved into highlights on their profile as evergreen content, your child can take it a step further and create social media graphics as covers for their highlights. These highlights add a fun yet professional-looking visual element to their feed.
Should I manage my child’s Instagram account?
As many parents are concerned with their child’s DSA application, you may want to be more hands-on in the process. However, since your child will be interviewed and will go for the auditions without you, it is inherent that they understand what is in their portfolio and why did they decide to include it in. Taking the helm on this one may take away your child’s confidence to explain their past works or address questions from the interviewers. Thus, it is best to let them take ownership of building their portfolio to narrate their stories, but most of all, let their personality shine through.
One thing that you can help your child with is to organise their portfolio. For example, if they need to put together an Instagram reel, you can guide them on the frames to put together. You can also advise them on the visual aesthetics of the posts or even share their posts with your friends. During this process, your child will also pick up skills that can increase their chances of success in future.
Encourage your child to celebrate their unique self
Some children may be camera-shy, however, it is important for them to have the confidence and celebrate their talented self. If your child is nervous about performing in front of an audience, then MindChamps Académie of Stars is the place to go. Adopting the practice of 100% Respect and Zero Fear™, the experts and trainers at the academy will not only help your child break through their fear, but also hone their skills further, turning them into champions at what they do. Book an appointment to find out about Singapore’s premier performing arts school.