Friday, April 10, 2020

BA Library Online: Points for Reflection 2

At Week 2 of our library online services, I rounded up articles on instructional design, creating connections, bibliotherapy and the inevitable changes that the pandemic will take effect when this is all over.
We are done with another week of online classes. Progress reports were sent out last week. We are all exploring teaching and learning online, an environment that is both exciting and scary. We are never short of compassion in this trying time and the concern is genuine when reaching out, lending a hand and learning together. We are Griffins!
To end the week in reflection, here are selected readings to accompany us all in the journey.
One of the many challenges that came about the transition to online learning was the management of the virtual or digital space for learning. Nothing will ever replace the physical space of the classroom but a relationship with our students can continue, even flourish online. In this article, teachers from all over share these strategies they have actually done to maintain the relationship with their students. The article includes a Google Form for student check-ins. This can prove helpful for Guidance, Advisory or in-between units of online classes.
I had a chat with my advisees over at Hangouts last Wednesday. Except for one, they were all prompt in signing in and were chattier than usual. I thought, either they miss seeing and being with each other or have been really anxious with the stay at home protocol this pandemic has subjected the entire world into. It is a tall order to keep relationships tethered to our students. It is even a taller order for the teenager to discipline himself or herself studying at home. Consider the socio-emotional aspect of learning when crafting lessons for online classes. This article has advice, ideas and practical tips.
There is a possibility that the lockdown or the enhanced community quarantine will spill over into May until June. The news that DepEd is looking at the conduct of online classes for school year 2020-2021 had everyone shuddering. Not from excitement, I think. Futurists, educators and school leaders weigh in on that possibility and how the COVID-19 pandemic can change learning especially the environment and the terrain for which it is designed.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Collage: Pace and Space

It was my turn to leave the house this week. I had my quarantine pass with me. I dropped by office of our home owner’s association to settle our quarterly dues and off I went to Pavilion Mall. I went to our local drug store, at Watsons, to buy medicines, food supplements and vitamins.

At the drug store, there was strict compliance to health protocols, but social distancing is really a challenge. Our trade and industry department issued an anti-hoarding policy. That was easier to monitor.

This is an entry for #ourcoronadiary, a writing and history making activity initiated and endorsed by writers and authors in the UK.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Collage: Liwanag 2

I made a photo collage today (April 2, 2020) of pictures I took before the Enhanced Community Quarantine last March 16, 2020. I miss watching the sun rise at school, taking walks at the end of the day and hugging trees. 

We live in Binan City, in the province of Laguna. It is in total lockdown now. I am counting the days until the end of the lockdown. But data and statistic reports tell us that the lockdown may extend until June. 

This is for #ourcoronadiary, a writing activity endorsed by writers, authors and publishers in the UK.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Kuwentong Musmos Interviews: Authors of Team Lampara Books Share Their Room To Read Workshop Experiences

Team Lampara at the press launch of Kuwentong Musmos 
My participation in the Kuwentong Musmos Workshop in Bohol last October is a running post in the blog. A developing story.

I had written about my insights and the wonderful time I had with friends in the children's book industry during the workshop. What followed was an illustrator workshop in Baguio City for artists who were chosen to illustrate our stories. My story, Masaya Maging Ako was given to Jamie Bauza to render and illustrate. Read more about the twenty books published by the four leading publisher of children's books in the country today. The Kuwentong Musmos Book Project is under the auspices of Room to Read in partnership with Adarna House.

And now, here is a round up of the blog interviews with authors of Team Lampara Books.   

Lauren Macaraeg author of Kiko Kitikiti, a book about ADHD

Mark Norman Boquiren author of Ang Batang Papet, a book about juvenile justice and detention

Reina Peralta author of Ang Nanay Kong Drayber, a book about gender roles and equality

Genaro Gojo Cruz author of Ang Alaga Kong Lolo, a book about a compassion and kindness to old people

Up next is the blog round up of the interview with illustrators of Team Lampara Books.

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Kuwentong Musmos Illustrator Interview: Luis "Ito" Chua

Luis "Ito" Chua, the illustrator of Kiko Kitikit (Macaraeg, Lampara Books 2019) shares what he learned from the Kuwentong Musmos Illustrators Workshop in this interview. Kiko Kitikiti is one of the five books published by Lampara Books under Room to Read's book project.

1.    What is your creative process for Kiko Kitikiti?

Creative process ko syempre gawa muna nang character studies. Explore, para may pagpipilian kung ano yung pinaka the best na babagay dun sa kwento. Iniba ko rin yung background nung kwento. Instead na sa classroom dapat ang scene, ginawang kong galaxy/sky ang background. Feeling kasi ni Kiko, lagi siyang lumilipad kagaya ng idolo nyang super hero.

2.    What is the picture book/children’s book you wish you had created or illustrated?
Sa RTR din ba ito? Gusto ko yung kwento na napunta kay Ara Villena. Yung tungkol sa talakitok na sira ang buntot. Mahilig kasi ako sa isda at dagat. 

3.  What are your 5 tips to aspiring illustrators?
Based yung iba dito sa mga natutunan ko sa workshop.

a. Sumali sa  Ang Ilustrador Ng Kabataan (Ang INK)!

b. Find your own style, sabi ko nga " kung gusto mong magkaroon ng sariling istilo, gumuhit ka nang walang kinokopyang litrato." I-appreciate mo kung ano yung outcome ng puso at isip mo. Yan ang magiging sarili mong istilo.

c. Make thumbnails para may pagpipilian ka kung ano yung pinaka magandang composition ng bawat spreads. 

d. Kapag gagawa ka ng characters,specially sa mga sensitive na topic dapat maging aware tayo sa mararamdaman nung magbabasa ng libro.

e. Matutong mag explore. Hindi kailangan lahat literal na kung anong nasa kwento, yun narin ang illustrations. Explore para maging malawak at makulay pa lalo yung kwento.

 4. What are your 5 recommended books for young artists or anyone who wishes to break out into picture book illustration?
1. Naku! naku! Naku!
2. Sandosenang Sapatos
3. Namimingwit sa Langit
4. Si Nina sa Bayan ng Daldalina
5. Berting Uling

 5. What part of Kiko Kitikiti did you enjoy drawing the most or proved challenging to draw?

Halos lahat e. Kasi yung kwento na napunta sa akin, kailangan paulit-ulit ang characters. Malikot kasi si Kiko. So kailangan talaga magkakamukha.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Online Bibliotherapy: Coping and Living Through the COVID-19 Pandemic

It is the third week of the Emergency Community Quarantine (ECQ) in the country and the second week of total lockdown in our province. It has been a crazy three weeks. It demands from us a great flexibility to cope, survive and thrive through this pandemic.

I am working from home since March 13, 2020. Overnight, I turned into an online school librarian providing access to resources, lending advice to students and colleagues and sharing experiences for professional development. On top of this, my reading and bibliotherapy advocacy continues. While I am working on a directory of books for bibliotherapy for the children evacuees of Taal, I am just as concerned with the socio-emotional needs of my students.

So, I whipped up several activities for them. I discussed it with the group up during advisory. We have it once a week. I posted the activities in the blog so that, others may find inspiration and use them too. Here is a roundup of the bibliotherapy activities I organized for my grade 10 advisees.

Mapping Your Heart - for self knowledge, self awareness and management of emotions

Collage - for self expression and spring board to more creative endeavors

Journalling - recognizing that we are all a part of this pandemic, the necessity to keep a diary or a journal keeps us sane and, when all of this is through, we have made history together. I used #ourcoronadiary as an example. Check the website, Our Corona Diary, for information on how to participate.

This is a collage I made the other day. I posted this on Instagram and used #ourcoronadiary. Try it too. It makes coping and living through this pandemic a little bit more joyful.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Kuwentong Musmos Illustrator Interview: Lui Buan

Lui Buan, the illustrator of Ang Alaga Kong Lolo (Gojo Cruz, Lampara Books 2019) shares with us his creative process and recommends books for aspiring artists. 

1. What is your creative process for Ang Alaga Kong Lolo?
The pre-production happened during the Room to Read workshop held in Baguio City last October. While reading the manuscript, I also had to get the “feel” of the story. Simultaneously, I was imagining how the characters would look like and their milieu.

For Ang Alaga Kong Lolo, I imagined the two main characters as subtly mirroring each other, not just with their “movements”, but also how they looked. 

For example, if Lolo wears a striped blue top - the child also wears a blue top. In the last pages, however, I did the reverse. That somehow adds an element of juxtaposition. For the location, I opted for a setting that is laid back yet is in proximity to the metropolis (because the child’s mother works in an office). So what came to my mind was Antipolo. It has the perfect setting for its greens and its uneven terrains are visually interesting. It also has a view of city skylines.

Once the characters were approved by the workshop mentors, I proceeded with sketching the storyboard - integrating both the characters and the story. The rendering and coloring for the illustrations happened after the workshop. Time is one of the challenges as we only had a month or so to illustrate the entire book (and the schedule overlapped with my graduate school finals, which made it even more challenging).

The pages were sent to the mentors for approval, and then forwarded to the book designer, Alen Mangabat for the book layout and the text. The challenge was all worth it, especially when I saw the printed colored sample.

 2. What is the picture book/children’s book you wish you had created or illustrated?
I like Pergy Acuña’s “Sampung Eroplano” because the concept is cute,  and I want to try illustrating counting books. I also like Ivan Reverente’s “Ang Kuya Kong Zombie” because I am fond of playing computer games (during my freetime). :)

3.  What are your 5 tips for aspiring illustrators?
First, hone your craft by drawing a lot. Second, get to know yourself well enough to know what your weaknesses and strengths are, and work on them. Then, believe in yourself more than anyone else; do not compare yourself to others. Lastly, keep on drawing!

4. What are your 5 recommended books for young artists or anyone who wishes to break out into picture book illustration.
-Children’s Picture Book by Martin Salisbury has chapters on western children’s book history, character development and even storyboarding techniques! I think this book is a must-read.

-Cartoon Animation by Preston Blair - This is not about picture books, but if you have a cartoony style, it has chapters about character constructions and even character acting that you may want to apply to your illustrations!

-The Animator’s Survival Kit by Richard Williams - Another book that’s not about children’s books specifically, but, you might want to look at some chapters on character acting, body language, and other animation principles that can be useful, especially if you have a more cartoony style. :)

-Show Your Work by Austin Kleon - I think it is a good book for artists of all ages, in the age of social media. The book is really about how to show your work.

-Ang Alaga Kong Lolo by Genaro Gojo Cruz and Lui Buan -  It will be available soon, so get a copy! :)

 5. What part in Ang Alaga Kong Lolo did you enjoy drawing the most or proved challenging to draw?

I really enjoyed drawing the characters so much, as well as the backgrounds. What I think was the most challenging part was showing the connection between the two main characters.

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