As a child educator for almost all my adult life, i have always known that the best way to learn is through play, art, story telling, and music and movement. now, i’m looking forward to adding yoga to my list of best ways to teach kids!
Come join me at the Manila leg of the Rainbow Kids Yoga teacher training, August 18-20 at Urban Ashram Manila – Center for Yoga! this course is not exclusively designed for yoga teachers but is a great program for educators, therapists and anyone who works with kids
Check out the following articles for more information as to why yoga is a great supplement for any kids programs
Fun Ways to to Yoga!
Why Yoga for Kids?
The Importance of Fun!
Relaxation and Visualization for Kids
Meditation for Kids
Every now and then, I still find myself questioning why and how I happened to fall into teaching. I still haven’t figured out the answer to that, but every time I find myself questioning just that, I am reminded that whatever the reason may be, I am just so lucky to have been given the opportunity to be among the ranks of those who are called ‘teacher’, and while I may be (and perhaps always will be) an Accidental Teacher, I am grateful that I am able to heed the call to do what it is I do.
Today I’d like to take pause and honor all the teachers that have paved the way for my own path, because in my heart of hearts, I know I wouldn’t be here if not for what I’ve gained through them.
Perhaps the teacher I owe most of who I am today is Teacher Chona. It was she who recognized early warning signs of dyslexia in me and went through great lengths to help me overcome that looming learning disability. While it may come to hinder me every now and then, I believe that her support and insights as early as then made learning, and yes, even excelling, a possibility for me.Read More
When this school year started, I knew I was sure about my decision to once again, hang up my Preschool Teacher Hat and move on to more “grown-up” stuff. I was looking forward to being more of a blogger and a writer for the various publications and sites I work for on the side. In preparation, I bought several other domains to start working on, with the idea that once I end the year, I can go full blast into maintaining these sites.
I was so sure of leaving that, unconsciously, I started to distance myself from the kids. While I was there to be their teacher in the classroom, I did not let myself get emotionally connected to them the way I used to. I avoided giving them pet names or using my usual terms of endearment towards them. I suppose in someway, I was preparing myself emotionally to say good-bye to them and to the profession.
However, in the past few months I’ve started questioning this resolve. Am I really sure I want to give this up?
Today, I was invited to give a workshop to a group of preschool teachers from various public schools around the Manila. At first I agreed to do the talk mainly because of my fervent belief that preschool teachers play one of the most essential roles in a child’s future. What made me say this was my own experience with my preschool teacher who went way above the call of duty to help me overcome an emerging learning problem she noted in me. As a child, I was diagnosed with dyslexia and I believe that it was her early intervention efforts that allowed me to make it through school in a relatively painless fashion. Sure, reading tasks have always been (and always will be) tedious and effort-full task for me, I have learned to enjoy it. My main goal for the workshop was just to get that message across.
However, as I ended the workshop, I realized, or should I say, REMEMBERED why I teach in the first place….
….I teach to touch lives and make change happen….
…I teach to watch children discover their full potential…
…I teach to see amazing things happen….
…I teach to see what pure joy means…
…I teach to remember what living life to the fullest means….
…I teach because this is where I learned life’s ABC’s.*…
…I teach because it makes me happy….
While I have not yet made up my mind at this point in time, I felt a spark rekindled in me. I am determined to make my teaching, both in the preschool and college levels, even better. I think part of the loss of interest was because of the fact that I’m just so tired, that I can barely enjoy myself with what I’m doing. I guess it’s also because I haven’t been taking care of my health too much. For one, I allowed myself to get fat again! Plus I don’t really sleep well often and and it’s toooo cold lately in the morning for me to feel any joy when I wake up and Bubba keeps leaving early in the morning, and the genius takes my blanket with him!!! (maybe I should use my lolo’s old electric blanket to keep me warm, I bet he wouldn’t steal that!). Seriously though, these things make it difficult for me to feel the joy of teaching on a regular basis.
Today, however, I saw my passion for teaching rekindled.
*life’s ABC’s, as published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s Youngblood Section, July 2007. Click here for the articleRead More
In anticipation of our upcoming Family Day activity next week, I am having my kids prepare thank you cards for their mommies, daddies, grannies or even nannies (whoever they want to make it for for that matter!). As I was preparing the materials this morning, I got to thinking about what who and what I am grateful for these past few months. I was suddenly reminded of the National Thank You Day celebration that Toblerone had last year, wherein I even held a contest in this blog sponsored by them.
And while Thank You Day is still weeks away, I still want to take this chance to say thank you to those that made this term especially meaningful. So as I close out the term (yes, grades included ) let me just say thank you….
Thank you Abpsych students for making me laugh every meeting, even if you were always, always so kulit
Thank you Psycho1 students for putting up with the technological challenges we had throughout the term…from the leaky roof, to the projector that wouldn’t project and the classroom without an aircon And more so, for trying to convince me to teach Psycho2 so we can be in the same class again (although it didn’t work hahaha!)
Thank you LBYPSY class (lab class) for making every Tuesday afternoon a comedy of errors…both on your parts and mine. And yes, Kevs, Robbie, and Don, three times in a row is TOOO much
Thank you PERSEF1 EW for giving me something to smile about always. Well, at least I think I was smiling.
Thank you Teacher Trina for being my lab partner And for putting up with my weird moods and crazy ideas all the time! And for the car rides too….even if they did turn out…um….challenging every now and then.
Thank you Sir Robert for cheering me on with my “Project Prettify Me”…and for trying to convince me to finish my thesis even though it makes me mad when you do But best of all, thank you for recognizing that I am a good teacher, with or without my M.S.
Thank you Teacher Pia for…well, where do I begin with this? I guess I can start it off with thank you for making that detour to the green school, even for a bit, because it changed my life in so many ways. More than you know, in fact Thank you too for helping me find that spark of inspiration that I was starting to lose again and for reminding me to keep that little girl inside of me alive
This list can go on for much longer, but I gotta get ready for class But once more, from the bottom of my heart, THANK YOURead More
I would be lying if I said I don’t have class favorites.
Let me qualify that statement: I have kids who I feel more connected to compared to others, but this does not mean I don’t treat my kids equally. Some of them just have the uncanny ability of tugging at my heartstrings. To be fair, I keep my emotions in check when I work with the children in class, and I make sure to have my partner tell me if she feels I am paying too much attention to one over the other.
The thing is, as hard as I try not to get attached to some other kids, I can’t help but fall for some of them. Perhaps it’s because of a certain need they have, or a difficulty we worked through together, or simply because he or she is simply adorable and can make me laugh, whatever it is, some of them creep slowly into my heart and stay there for a long, long time.
Cara was one of those little kids who touched my heart and has stayed there despite the fact that she has been gone for the past two school years already.
I guess what made Cara so special to me was that she was in the first class I taught after returning from my two year retirement from preschool teaching and she was one of my biggest success stories ever! She transformed from a very clingy (yes, with matching cry, kick and may-I-throw-you-a-tantrum daily) little girl who refused to talk to anyone except her cousin Rafa and her nanny to a confident and sociable child in a few months. At first she would not allow me to hold her and would really cry if her yaya was asked to wait in the nanny area already.Read More
Often times in a preschool teachers life she will find that no matter how well in advance she has planned her lessons, things happen that change the course of this discussion. In my personal experience, this has happened countless times, both for the good and the bad. Sometimes these changes are due to faulty equipment or at times due to a more pressing interest in another topic or stimuli, whatever it is, the teachers job is to adjust to these changes and not get caught up with the “plan”.
When I was starting out, I occasionally struggled with that. It took some time for me to really embrace the idea that no matter what I do or say, if the children are intent on something else, I better just go with it. And what I realized from this is by going with the children’s flow, I would find they learned better and they remembered these lessons even years later.
One example of these sudden changes was when I ran into Mother Nature as I taught my kids about animals and bugs. As part of our Math lesson, I had them go through an investigative bug hunt. The task was for them to look for the plastic bugs and pictures of animals I had hidden around the playground and to count the number of legs these bugs had, then we were to chart this and compare which had more or less . Armed with a magnifying glass and a record sheet, we set out in search for these little critters.Read More
fellow bloggers with SM Winema Project Head, Sharon Yu…
yes…she used to be my student!
One of the most rewarding things for me as a teacher is seeing my kids grow up to become their own people. Over the years I have received updates from parents bubbling with pride over their child’s latest accomplishments and every time I get these messages, I feel a surge of pride rush in me. Even though I know a lot has happened since they were in my class, I can’t help but feel I am part of that growth and progress as well, even just a little bit.
In the past two years, my very first preschoolers have graduated from elementary school and are now in high school. It’s amazing how quickly time flies and in my head, I still think of them as the little kids I used to carry around!
My college kids have graduated too. I guess that’s even stranger for me than having the little ones grow up! For one, a guy from the very first class I taught in the university is now my colleague in the department. More than that, he’s a very accomplished researcher. I also have found myself “working” with former students in a totally different capacity now. Since I have gotten into this blogging thing, I have run in to two former students from an advertising/marketing class I once taught. The last time I saw one of them, we had a long talk about the movie Inception and about Psychology. And you know what, for some reason, I felt so tongue-tied and clueless all of a sudden!!!
In any case, seeing them grow up has truly been a testament to why I do this job
What’s the most resilient parasite? An Idea. A single idea from the human mind can build cities. An idea can transform the world and rewrite all the rules. – Cobb, Inception
As the quote from one of the biggest blockbusters this year, Inception, goes, an idea can really change lives. This year, Unilab encourages us all to look into ourselves and find our own “parasites” to effect positive change. Even a small idea may cause big changes, especially with the Filipino Youth.
Launched in June The Unilab Youth Camp for Change is an idea-generation camp and competition for college students that aims to
inspire fresh, developmental, and research-based social marketing initiatives that promote and advance health and wellness at the community level.
Now, Unilab pushes the envelope further with a simple little contest for you, my dear readers!
Simply answer this question by leaving a comment at the end of this post:
Q: If you were given a chance to do one good thing to improve the health and wellness situation in a community, what would it be and why? Your idea can be as simple as improving the drainage system to dramatically alleviate the cases of leptospirosis in your community or as grand as building an entire city hospital to address the health needs of your community.
The entries will be judged by Unilab and other media outlet. Five winners will take home two Unilab gift packs each.
So, what are you waiting for? Leave me your comments now! Let your ideas grow! Contest will run from July 27, 2010 to August 6, 2010. UPDATE: prizes will be claimed personally by winners via meet-up
Also, all college students are invited to join Ideas Positive: The Unilab Youth Camp for Change. You and your friends can channel your ideas in helping your chosen community through this program. The winning group can see their idea come to life with a P100,000 seed money plus a 3-day, 2-night all-expense paid trip to Boracay. For more information, visit www.ideaspositive.com.Read More
Che is a medical doctor by profession and a truly caring person by heart. In her journey towards becoming the medical practitioner that she is today, she took the road less travelled and become a Doctor to the Barrios.
I first met Che back in college. I guess you can say we really weren’t instant friends. In fact, while our barkada technically got it’s start from Freshman year, it wasn’t till later on towards the end of the year that I became part of the group. Back then, I was still seen as the coño, rich kid na inglesera (not that that’s a bad thing!!!). The truth, however, was just that I was painfully shy so I remained distant and unconcerned. However, Che and the rest of the gang soon adopted me into the fold and the rest was history.
Whenever my mom and I talk about my barkada, she always remembers Che with fondness and says as early as my debut when she first met Che, she knew she was a good soul. My mom’s a pretty good judge of character, (except perhaps when it comes to men!) and I know she is right about Che.
It’s been 14 years since we first met and in that span of time, Che has proven to be one of the best friends anyone can count on. Not only that, she is truly someone who inspires me to be a better person. In my darkest hour, she was one of the few who allowed me to wallow in that dark deep pit of pity without judging me or making me feel worse about it, nor did she coddle me and let me fester down there.
In my latest article at The Philippine Online Chronicles, I wrote a feature on the Doctor to the Barrios Program of the Department of Health. I was deeply honored and glad to have had the opportunity to have an in-depth look at Che’s experience and what her journey entailed.
In my interview with Che, she said she was inspired by Dr. Juan Flavier’s book about the DTTB program. I hope someday my article and Che’s story also inspires other people to become the best they can be.Read More
Like I mentioned in my previous post, majority of my students came from my class last school year so getting to know you activities are not as extensive. Also, since they are mostly familiar with the school, touring the facility was nothing new to them.
As such, I decided to make our school tour more than just a “getting to know my school” activity. I decided to do a thinking exercise to get our learning process started. I also thought that this would be a good way to assess their present capabilities and also gauge what my the two new additions to my class can do.
I started out with a drawing activity with the kids making a picture about what they think they can do, see, find or use in Playschool.
Here are a few examples of their responses:
Then we charted out their ideas and finally set off around the school to find out more about their hypotheses. After finding out if those things they drew were present in school or not, we also had brief discussions about what these were for, where it could be found and how to use these things. At the end, we had this chart:
It was a fun activity, although it was so hot so the kids and I ended up so sweaty and exhausted afterward!
This is definitely the kind of things I will miss when I “retire” from being a preschool teacher. Like many of my readers know, I am planning to make this year my last teaching year because I am no spring chicken anymore! I can feel the age creeping in. Although I do hope I can still do some consultancy or administrative work in the preschool level in the future. However, while it may be physically gentler for me, I’m sure it will be an adjustment to me, especially when it comes to the nitty-gritty details of the job such as filing business credit reports, wading through paperwork, attending to payroll, and making sure the bills are paid on time. Plus of course making sure the teachers get their benefits and the school turns a profit. Now that I think about it, it appears that teaching the kids may be a wiser decision!!!Read More
Three years ago, I invested in a new car. One thing I used to guide my decision as to what car to get was whether or not it was fuel efficient. As such, I opted for a 1.3 valve engine and a manual transmission. I also read reviews about the car I was planning to get and most raters did point out it’s fuel efficiency. However, I believe it is not just the vehicle that translates to fuel efficiency, but also how one maintains and uses the vehicle.
For me, the most important fuel saving tip is planning ahead. We have to be more cautious in planning our schedules, the routes we will take and the stops we make when driving a car. I noticed that since I’ve started monitoring my movements, I’ve saved quite a lot on gas costs. For example, if I know I have an event in Ortigas or Quezon City, I try to schedule appointments at my clinic in Cubao as well so I can hit two birds with one stone.
My mom also reminds me to lessen the junk I leave in my car. As a teacher, I tend to keep a box of papers and booklets in the trunk so it’s easy to access when necessary. She tells me, however, if I always fill my trunk, I not only damage my car but I also use more fuel.
Do you have a fuel saving tip? If so, Pilipinas Shell invites you to join the search for the Philippines Smartest Drivers. If you hold a valid Philippine drivers license, simply share your Fuel saving tips by shooting a video explaining how this can translate to fuel efficiency and upload it to www.topgear.com.ph/shellsmartestdrivers. Be sure to end your video by completing this phrase: “Ang Pinoy na matipid sa gasolina, ____________.” Entries can be as simple or as creative as you’d like it to be. Uploading period is from May 20 to June 20, 2010.
All contestants will take home premium items from Shell and the top ten finalists will take home Php 10,000 worth of Shell vouchers and will be invited to a fuel economy boot camp on June 26 where they will compete for the top honors of being hailed The Philippines Smartest Drivers.
These drivers will also get the chance to join Team Philippines from the Mapua Institute of Technology and the University of Sto. Tomas in the Shell Eco-Marathon Asia in Malaysia where they will compete with drivers from other Asian countries.Read More
However, for many, this may not feel like it. I am lucky I was born to a family that afforded me a good education, but not everybody is as lucky as me. But this does not mean they don’t deserve an education right?
In the radio this past week (I listen to AM stations most of the time whenever I am heading to school), I heard countless tales of the sad plight of education in our country. I heard how some very deserving students suddenly found themselves stripped of honors they should have received if not only for the fact that their parents could not afford to settle tuition dues. I heard stories of how some were not able to attend their graduation rites because of the fees being charged for it.
Yes, education is a right..or is it really?
Presently, quality education seems to no longer be accessible for all. While I may understand why education in a private institution can cost quite a lot, I also know that things can be done in the national level to help control these costs, especially for national universities. However, the money that should be going to quality education ends up in pockets that do not deserve them. It’s a shame that the government cannot allocate the budget that education sector deserves. Sometimes it feels like only the private sector or citizens like our CNN Hero Efren Penaflorida and his team make clear strides towards making quality education accessible to all.
Just because education is a right, though, it doesn’t mean that you have to be ungrateful, irrational or violent about not receiving this right fully. While I fully understand where the students from PUP were coming from this past week when it came to their rallying and fighting for the education they deserve, I was disheartened by news of the violent protest that ensued. It saddened me that they felt they had to resort to burning the school equipment to prove their point. I have taken part in my fair share of protests and demonstrations but I still believe that violence will not solve anything. At the end of the day, I feel that instead of making a positive impact to the situation, it became an even more complicated one because now there are less resources available for the students.
As a teacher, I personally feel how education is not given the credit it definitely deserves. I will not deny that comparatively, the institution I work for pays me well. However, if I compare this to other countries or other types of industries, its not much. Sometimes, it makes me really think about why I still teach in the Philippines. Whenever I see Facebook updates about my fellow graduates from FLCD who are teaching in the US, I think about finally taking the plunge and making a good living for myself there. However, I still stay. Why? Because I still believe the Filipinos need teachers to stay.
As we approach the 2010 National Elections, campaign promises are being made left and right, and education is in the thick of it. I hope that finally, the next government can finally allocate a decent budget that will allow our millions of Filipinos to claim their right to education.Read More
Before I begin, let me say it’s been a while since I stopped and tried to see the positives in my day-to-day life. Earlier this year, I had attempted to start a photo Project 365 that focused on finding the silver lining to everyday but since I’ve gotten so busy, I haven’t really had time to do so. Thankfully, as an added bonus for her contest, Earth encouraged her readers to take a look at their SHOEs for the day. What are SHOEs? These are your Seven Heaven on Earth, or seven things, events, places or whatever that you appreciate. No matter how small or big, it’s important to be grateful and to honor them, right?
So thanks Earth for reminding me to do this! And so, here are my SHOES:
1. I am grateful for the successful school year that had just finished. I enjoyed my days with the kids a lot, and despite some difficulties along the way, they all showed good progress and for those who are of age already, they made it to the big schools!
2. My third article for www.thepoc.net came out today It was an article on addiction and I enjoyed trying to capture the shot that was used for the article. Oh….those are all vitamins, fyi! Well, except for the blue one, which is a night time over-the-counter sleep aid.
3. I am grateful for the summer. I love how I don’t have to wake up so early everyday and I am looking forward to the rest and relaxation summer brings. I was lucky to have some early summer getaways but hopefully soon, I can take a longer and more relaxing trip soon!
4. I am especially happy that both my brother and my Bubba are okay. Last week was a truly tumultuous week as Tuesday saw Bubba with a sprained paw and JJ, my brother, figured in a tricycle accident on Thursday.They’re both doing great now and thankfully, there’s no major problems or concerns with them both.
5. A good night’s sleep! If there is one thing I miss a lot, it’s sleeping in and not having to wake up with the blaring alarm clock. I am so grateful for that today!
6. My WIFI router! This was purchased from winnings in a contest I won a few months back and since I got it, it has definitely made me very happy. That and Cerise, my Nokia E63
7. My 7th SHOE is blog contests Though I don’t win all the contests I join, it’s a fun and entertaining past time. And when I do win, the thrill is just….awesome! Just yesterday I received the great news that I won a Starbucks 2010 Clean and Green Tumbler! Woot!
what about you, what are your SHOEs?Read More
Today our country marks the 24th year since the historic bloodless revolution known as the People Power Revolution. From this the Philippines was freed from the clutches of a dictator. Our people got to know what true democracy meant and to live freely.
I was blessed to grow up in the time of that freedom. I was able to study in the University of the Philippines and not worry about anything because we had been granted the privileges of a free people. However, just because I personally did not grow up or live through (at least being old enough to know what it meant) martial law, this doesn’t mean I should take it for granted.
Today I am reminded of the fight my parents, and many of our parents, fought. I am reminded of the cause taken up by a simple housewife dressed in yellow, who fought to end the rule of the Dictator and to seek justice for the senseless killing not just of her husband, but of countless victims of extra-judicial killings, many of whom were never found. Today I am reminded of the sacrifice taken by many who marched down EDSA with arms linked, unfazed by tanks and arms that sought to stop them from gaining freedom.
However, as I recall with pride our people’s success, I feel saddened that even after all that, it seems that we as a people still have not learned our lesson. We still allow corrupt officials to govern us, just take a look at all the campaign paraphernalia all around asking for the voters to “bring back” or “return” old faces to power, despite knowing their track records. I feel appalled when I recall how that in the face of evidence of anomalies and inappropriate behaviors, we still allow these people to seek public office.
What do we need for us to learn our lessons? Isn’t that what history is for?
I may not be an expert, but isn’t it that that’s what the People Power fight was all about? To break the chains of old politics to usher in a new dawn? At the rate we’re going, it sort of feels that we are once more being chained into our old practices. And the sad part of this: we are not chained by tyrants unwillingly but we allow ourselves to be chained by our bad decisions.
We may be living in a “free” world today, but sometimes, I don’t believe the word free means the same thing anymore. Just take a look at the current situation of our country. We have the Maguinadano Massacre and the Morong 43, we have countless human rights violations, threats to our basic freedoms…all in the face of a supposed democracy.
As a people, we really need to claim the true Spirit of People Power.
There were so many heroes of EDSA. Let us honor them by keeping their fight alive.Read More
In the news these past few days is the impending threat of rotating brownouts throughout Luzon. Besides the inconvenience these brownouts will bring, it will definitely have a largely negative impact on businesses, hospitals and even educational institutions. If these brownouts do happen, it’s sure to hit some school hours in some way, unless these hit at night, which then poses a fire risk.
Overall, it’s hard to imagine how the generations and generations before ours managed to live without the conveniences of modern technology, particularly electricity. I can’t imagine a classroom without it!Read More
This January, the British Council launched their GO: Know More Do More Live More Campaign, a campaign that opens up exciting opportunities for Filipino students interested in the fields of Technology, Beauty and Fashion, and Business and Entrepreneurship in the United Kingdom. Dubbed Education UK, the project highlights the message that if you want something, GO for it! Here is, as they put it, “Your Future on Track”.
As part of their campaign, the British Council will be offering a series of activities that will allow interested university and post-graduate students to explore course offerings, find out funding options and interact with alumni from prestigious UK universities who will share their first hand experience of getting an education abroad. These events are all offered FREE OF CHARGE! Who knows, by next school year you can be pursuing a degree in F1 Engineering or some other amazing course in one of reputable UK schools such as University of Cambridge, London School of Economics, University of Oxford or University of Leeds
The events are as follows:
- Alumni Counselling Session. Slated for January 29, 2010 at the Makati Shangri-la, the session will showcase alumni from various universities in the UK. Alumni from top schools such as Oxford University and Cambridge University will be there to talk about their schools, their experiences as students and what it is like to live in the UK. Schools participating in this session are as follows: University of Birmingham, University of Bradford, University of Cambridge, University College London, University of Edinburgh, Institute of Education, University of London, Kings College London, University of Leeds, London Business School, Loughborough University, London School of Economics, University of Manchester, Middlesex University, University of Oxford, Oxford Brookes University, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, University of Wales Bangor, University of York, University of Warwick, University of London- Queen Mary and Westfield College.
- Funding Options Seminar. This seminar will help potential students explore scholarships, financial aid and other funding options available to them. This will be held on February 19, 2010 at the Top Shelf of Fully Booked, Bonifacio High Street.
- Education UK Exhibition. In culmination, an exhibit will be held at the ballroom of the EDSA Shangri-La hotel on March 5-6, 2010 where representatives from UK Universities will be on hand to talk to students about course offerings and their universities.
For more information, log on to www.britishcouncil.org.ph.