Scratch-Your-Head-News Week #1

 

I have been busy rattling my head with a new post (or posts) last week that I have failed to recognize that most of the articles that I read had been very, for a lack of a better term, cringe-worthy. I do not know how I came across these articles, but I was very thankful that I did, since most of it would affect me, if not today, in the future, one way or another.

Here’s the first one, off one of our local newspaper (Manila Bulletin):

     The Department of Education (DepEd) has decided to drop SCIENCE from the roster of subjects taken by incoming Grade 1 pupils in line with its efforts to decongest the basic Education Curriculum and to make learning more enjoyable to young learners. 

Also, according to the article, the subjects for the first graders under the new K-12 curriculum would be:

  1. Mother Tongue
  2. Filipino
  3. Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao
  4. Music, Art, Physical Education and Health (MAPEH) 
  5. Mathematics
  6. Araling Panlipunan
  7. English – which will be taught in the second semester and will mainly focus on fluency.

I am not entirely sure what their plan is, but if you read “decided to drop Science from the roster subject” for Grade 1 pupils, I am pretty sure you would also be scratching your head, and ask a lot of questions. My questions are as follows:

  1. How is Science going to be discussed in the Second Grade if the basics, which was supposed to have been covered in the First Grade, would not be part of the new curriculum?
  2. How is removing Science going to make learning fun?
  3. What the hell is Mother Tongue doing in this list if Filipino is already part of it?
  4. Even English – it’s going to have a different route?

Now, I am not an educator, or even someone who knows how to run education related programs, but I do know that science was a big part of my first few years of school. If they want to really make learning “more fun” for the students, why not add more competent teachers? Create more classrooms/schools so the students have a shelter while studying? The picture below is a sample:

I have a few more suggestions: Update the text books, and make sure that there are no factual errors (for the Love of God!), create something that would alleviate the tuition fees, and maybe then, the students would have fun in learning.

And I also need to research more about the Mother Tongue subject. As far as I know, this subject would teach Tagalog. My only concern is, I don’t think this would be necessary, since we have a lot of people living in different areas that has their own dialect/s, and they would not have much use for it anyway, unless they plan on going to Manila or somewhere predominantly Tagalog. 

   A bit more reading told me that the DepEd is planning to just “integrate Science in other subjects”. Uh, I wonder HOW? One minute, a student will be learning about our National heroes (just for example), and then the next minute, a bit of Science would be introduced.

  “Dr. Jose Rizal, our Pambansang Bayani, was executed by Spanish Firing Squad. Did you know that the blood that came out of Jose Rizal is composed of RBCs, WBCs…?”

 Kids would be left scratching their heads, and their seatmates’ heads too.

Another thing, what if the kid is interested in science? What if the kid is fond of watching educational information channels like Nat Geo and Discovery, but was not able to supplement his/her interest at school? Wouldn’t that be “not fun” for that kid?

There are a lot of loopholes in this curriculum, and there are a lot of questions too. Maybe the Department should also start hiring “Secretaries” that knows something about education.

I don’t want to be a conspiracy theorist, but are these people (in the government) planning to dumb down Filipinos bit by bit so their sons/daughters/relatives can stay in power? Seems so.

 

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5 comments on “Scratch-Your-Head-News Week #1

  1. “Dr. Jose Rizal, our Pambansang Bayani, was executed by Spanish Firing Squad. Did you know that the blood that came out of Jose Rizal is composed of RBCs, WBCs…?” — now this is something else. Guffawed, yeah. Nice post. Didn’t know that this K12 program will be making a lot of difference in the curriculum. Will do researching about it too.

  2. I help my sister with her studies, and I can’t help but wonder sometimes what we’re paying the schools for… One of my major issues with the curriculum is that they teach Filipino by giving students textbooks they can’t understand, perhaps to make Filipino classes “professional” and “modern”. *facepalm* Then they “help” students by giving them incomplete Filipino dictionaries. *double facepalm* This is one of the reasons why I think e-learning, or at least home-schooling will become the better option… or maybe it already is! haha

  3. What?! Science isn’t enjoyable? Who said that? When you remove Science in Grade 1, does it guarantee that schooling will become more enjoyable?

    About the Mother Tongue section, it’s almost useless when the first language you learned is Tagalog. Their reason might be the diversity of languages we have in the country like Cebuano, Ilonggo, Ilokano, Chavacano, Pangalatok, Kapampangan, etc. A lot of people speak Cebuano even though it lacks formal teaching/lesson/training.

    BUT, those people who speak English as their mother tongue will be considered as foreign students.

    Isagani Cruz tackled K-12 beautifully here: http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleId=775762

    • Oh yeah, that’s a good point! I hadn’t considered that the Mother Tongue classes might be for those who use a different dialect…

      And I agree, I think the only problem with the Science classes is the delivery. It’s not the student’s responsibility to be interested (in the conventional classroom setting, I mean), it’s the teacher’s job to make learning Science meaningful. I mean of course, the students have to be ready to study, but since the teacher is in charge of the content, the flow, and the methods, there’s only so much a student can do to make it interesting for themselves. I see students in Science classes simply memorizing things to sound smart. :(

      Thanks for the link!

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