Sunday, October 31, 2010

Books and Storytelling in a Conference on Virtual Library Spaces

Attending the first day of the 4th Rizal Library International Conference last 21 October was an opportunity that allowed me to touch base with friends, college batch mates and colleagues in the profession. Here I am with Peachy Limpin who flew in from Australia a day before the conference began. She presented a paper on Technical Services with a focus on Resource Description and Access (RDA). Her full paper can be viewed and downloaded from the conference's website. Papers and presentations of other speakers may also be accessed there.

I was also given the chance to present the 1st National Children's Book Awards by the PBBY and the National Book Development Board. A poster session was provided for me as well. Thank you so much to Dir. Lou David and her team of librarians who made this possible. Four hundred participants are now aware of this milestone in Philippine Children's Literature.

During the fellowship night, Jay Menes and I performed three stories using a beatbox. Shout out to our dear friend, Dianne de Las Casas for inspiring us to experiment on performance and participative telling techniques.

Here's looking towards more opportunities to tell Filipino folk stories in the oral tradition!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Teen Read Week Round Up

And so the carnival of Teen Read Week (TRW) 2010 comes to a close. It was fun doing the list mania but I'll cook up something for next year's TRW. For now, here are thoughts and inferences I've drawn up from the blog activity. Feel free to add yours if you have one or several.

* Edith Hamilton and books on mythology are a big hit among teen readers.

* There were a few Filipiniana Young Adult books in the list of the ten readers who participated. Majority are foreign books. We, people in the book and publishing industry, should do something about this. I'm sending an email to a local publisher right after writing this entry.

* There are a reader's rite of passage books -- books that a reader in one particular age group read through -- Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Sweet Dreams, Sweet Valley, Mills & Boon, tons of comic and graphic novels. It only goes to shoe that books written and produced for young people must address their developmental needs. This does not mean though that adult books are forbidden for them to read. Reading is developmental and interest based. There is a necessity to recognize this reality.

* The reading young adult is a curious monster to tame.

* The choice of reading materials reflects the reader's personality. Haha!

I wish to thank all who sent their list - Rayvi Sunico, Mike Rivera, Carlo Go, Paolo Chikiamco, Blooey Singson, Liwa Malbed, Maricel Montero, Kenneth Yu, Candy Gourlay and Anthony Mariano. For those who did the list in their blogs like fantaghiro23 many thanks as well for others have followed suit and responded in earnest via comments. The PBBY board joined in the fun too! Click this and see our fave books when we were teens.

Off to November now which is Library and Information Services month. I'll be resurrecting the Author of the Month; will feature five librarians and their reading list from their teenage years (yes, we can't get enough of books and reading!); post a few library related topics; and will share some workshop highlights and library projects.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Anthony Mariano: Books I Read When I was a Teenager

Anthony Mariano, founder of Sambat Trust, a UK based charity dedicated to help build libraries and assist Tanauan schools in developing literacy sent his list of books read as a teen. Anthony is based in Japan teaching English but his heart and memory fleets from London to Tanauan, Batangas -- places where he grew roots and wings!

Wow! Looking at my list, I must have been a morose teen.

Here they are:

1. Adrian Mole books- Sue Townsend

2.Animal Farm- George Orwell.

3. Lord Of the Flies- William Golding

4. Catcher in the Rye- J.D.Salinger

5. An Evil Cradling- Brian Keenan

6. To Kill A Mocking Bird- Harper Lee

7. 1984- George Orwell

8. Early Bill Bryson travel books.

9. Grapes of Wrath/ Of Mice and Men- John Steinbeck.

10.Handmaid's Tale- Margaret Atwood.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Candy Gourlay: Books I Read When I was a Teenager

Candy Gourlay, journalist and author shares her list of books she read as a teenager. Candy's debut novel, Tall Story, is a smash hit in Manila and in London. The book will soon come out in the US and I expect that Fil-American teens particularly will love it!

Candy blogs and her website is fantastic! You can read her whereabouts there and watch trailers of her book, Tall Story. If I am not mistaken, Candy is currently writing her second novel for young adults.

Below is Candy's top ten reads!

This is very revealing of one's age but here you go:

1. Prince and the Pauper by Samuel Clemens - how many times did I read this? and it was always brilliant!

2. Rich Man Poor Man by Irwin Shaw - here's where I figured out what sex was about and I remember being so appalled. I read it because of the mini series starring Nick Nolte.

3. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott - my role model was Jo March - read the entire series and decided I would become a novelist who lived in a house filled with little boys (I kind of fulfilled that wish).

4. Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens - read this because of the movie and loved it even though the language was very difficult.

5. David Copperfield by Charles Dickens - read this because of a Ladybird book I read about it.

6. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand - I thought I was so cool reading this. Now I totally disagree with the philosophy.

7. The Quiet American by Graham Greene - loved Graham Greene but now I would be hard pressed to recall the stories.

8. The Water Method Man by John Irving - this was so funny and so adult for innocent me.

9. The World According to Garp by John Irving - I loved this book but only in my maturity realized that it was an anti-feminist tract!

10. Nora Aunor and Other Profiles by Nick Joaquin - this made me want to become a journalist and write similar profiles.

Hey this list made me realize that teen reads are not necessarily confined to kids' books.

And yeah, ten is a very small number.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Maricel Montero: Books I Read When I was a Teenager

Executive Director of Museo Pambata, Maricel Montero, shares her list and recommends books that teens should read!

Now you got me into remembering my teenage years and the books I read . Okay aside from the Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Bobbsey Twins, Mallory Towers, Mills and Boon and Barbara Cartland books and lots of Almanacs, hahaha!

I will never forget the following titles: Not in their order
Thimble Summer by by Elizabeth Enright (First book I really enjoyed reading, because I am a small town farm girl : )
Heidi by Johanna Spyri
A Separate Peace by John Knowles
The Gift of Acabar by Og Mandino
The Little Prince by Antoine Saint-Exupery
The Dune by Frank Herbert
The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M Auel
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
The Drifters by James Michener
Tortilla Flat by John Steinbeck

Books I read from our personal library at home --

Moby Dick by Herman Melville
Black Beauty by Anna Sewell
Call of the Wild by Jack London
(We had a set of the Reader’s Digest collection of classics with themes e.g. Animals and I enjoyed reading them : )
Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Chariots of the Gods by Erick Von Daniken and other UFO books
The encyclopedia ( I love searching the different countries and remembering their capitals and imagining how it looked like. I also enjoyed looking at different breeds of dogs : )
Greek Mythology by Edith Hamilton (of course!)

Recommended reading for young adults ( not in order)
Senior’s Ball by Rene Villanueva
Tall Story by Candy Gourlay
Barefoot in Fire by Barbara Ann Gamboa – Lewis
Harry Potter series by JK Rowling
Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares
Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Patterson
Island of the Blue Dolphin by Scott O’ Dell
And of course, a smattering of the classics.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Kenneth Yu: Books I Read When I was a Teenager

Kenneth Yu, writer, editor and publisher of The Philippine Genre Stories sends his list of books read as a teenager. I've featured Kyu in this blog before and he happens to be the third Xaverian to join the Teen Read Week list mania!

Kyu is one voracious reader. He could not contain his reading choices to only ten. He has twenty! He blogs at Philippine Genre Stories.

My list, in no particular order:

1. D'Aulaire's and Edith Hamilton's Greek Myths, and D'Aulaire's Norse myths
2. The Lord of the Rings by Tolkien
3. The Prydain Chronicles by Alexander
4. The Narnian Chronicles by Lewis
5. The Earthsea Tales by Le Guin
6. Agatha Christie mysteries
7. The Time Quintet by L'Engle (actually, there were only the first three when I was between 13 and 18)
8. Stephen King horror tales of this era (Carrie, Night Shift, Christine, Salem's Lot, The Stand, Pet Sematary, Cujo, The Shining)
9. Edgar Allan Poe's stories
10. Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes
11. Roald Dahl's books (The Charlies books, Fantastic Mr. Fox, James and the Giant Peach, Danny, Champion of the World, etc.)
12. H.P. Lovecraft's The Lurking Fear and Other Stories
13. Various short stories by Asimov, Dick, Clarke
14. The short stories of Hemingway and Faulkner
15. Doyle's Holmes stories
16. Howard's Conan stories
17. Watership Down by Adams
18. Dune by Herbert
19. Tolstoy's short stories
20. Chekhov's short stories

Monday, October 25, 2010

Liwliwa Malabed: Books I Read When I was a Teenager

Liwliwa Malabed shares her reading list. Liwa is a friend from KUTING (Kwentista ng mga Tsikiting), the premiere organization of children's book writers in the Philippines. She is currently its Vice President. Busy with KUTING work, as the organization os scouting for new members and inking writing projects left and write, Liwa does freelance writing for TV, magazines and the likes.

1.The Hobbit - Tolkien
2. The Thief of Always/Imajica- Barker
3. Walk Two Moons- Creech
4. Hope for the flowers-Paulus
5. Calvin and Hobbes-Watterson
6. Wasted-Alanguilan
7. Kitchen-Yoshimoto
8. Dance dance dance- Murakami
9. Of Love and Other Demons- Márquez
10. Alchemist-Coelho
and of course, pugad baboy, agatha christie and sweet valley (haha)

Most are books my brother (Jong) lent me. Everytime my kuya comes home to Ilocos, he would bring me a book or two. Just so i'll stop reading Sweet Valley.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Blooey Singson: Books I Read When I was a Teenager

Blooey Singson is a writer, public relations executive, newspaper contributor, and freelance illustrator. She is a member of Ang Ilustrador ng Kabataan (Ang I.N.K.) and an administrator of the Filipino book club Flips Flipping Pages. Blooey is a book lover who reads over two hundred books a year, and a compulsive book shopper who cannot get through the week without adding a book (or ten) to her collection, which ran out of shelf space a long time ago. She reviews books and blogs about her book adventures on her website,


1) The Harry Potter series (Books 1-5) by J.K. Rowling- I discovered Harry Potter when I was 14 years old, and the rest of my teenage years were spent reading the series, making it a huge part of my adolescence. I feel like I grew up with Harry and his friends.

2) The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin - I've read many more mystery novels after reading this book, but The Westing Game remains to be one of the most brilliantly plotted mysteries I have ever had the pleasure of reading

3) The 21 Balloons by William Pene du Bois - I discovered this book back in the 4th grade, but it remained one of the most read books in my library up to my teens. It was the first travel book I ever read, and it has always made me wonder how it would feel to just drift aimlessly on a hot air balloon.

4) Skin and Other Stories by Roald Dahl- I've been reading Roald Dahl since I was young, but when a college friend lent me this collection of short stories, I discovered a whole new level of appreciation for Roald Dahl. Today, I love his adult works more than his children's books.

5 - 6)Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume and Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech- These two novels deal with coping with the grief of a loved one. I lost my dad at age 11, and it took years for me to get over it, but these books really helped a lot.

7) The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupery - This book will always remind me of my 4th year literature class, when forty-four of us girls in blue and white uniforms sat enthralled as our teacher read us passages from the book. We were tamed for life.

8) Noli Me Tangere by Jose Rizal- I enjoyed this high school requirement immensely, even when we read the full length Tagalog novels and we had to consult the Filipino dictionary with every sentence!

9) P.S. I Love You by Barbara Conklin- They weren't selling Sweet Dreams in the bookstores anymore when we were in high school, but a classmate photocopied her older sister's battered copy of this book and it was passed around in class, drawing collective sighs from thirteen year old schoolgirls.

10) Love Story by Erich Segal - Along with P.S. I Love You, this was another one of those books I read in high school, during that phase when all we ever wanted to read were books about undying love that made us gush and sigh, and cry and wish that someday we'd be able to experience the things we read about!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Paolo Chikiamco: Books I Read When I was a Teen

Paolo Chikiamco, Palanca awardee, speculative fiction advocate, blogger and Pinoy folklore enthusiast sent his list of books read as a teen. He is the second Xaverian to join in the Teen Read Week carnival of this blog :-)

Paolo blogs at Rocket Kapre.

I made an earlier post on my old blog about books I treasured early in my life as a reader, and it seems fitting to continue now, for Teen Read Week 2010, with books from my teen-age years. These aren't young adult books for the most part: for one thing, that genre didn't really exists aside from the Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys/Sweet Valley juggernauts; and for another, I was already reading "adult" level genre fiction before I hit puberty. Given that these were some of my most productive years as a reader, it'll be hard to create a list of ten, but I'll give it a shot.

JEDI DAWN (Star Wars Game Books) by Paul Cockburn: Simply reading stories was never enough for me - I wanted to be a part of those worlds, to enter them. Before I discovered that I could sit down and write my own adventures, and before video games reached the point where the world and the story were as important as the gameplay, choose your own adventure books were the closest I could get to that--and this book was the best one I ever read. In 1993, I went to England as part of a summer exchange program, and I fear I might have left a bad impression with the foster family I was staying with, because after a visit to a London bookstore I had absolutely no interest in socializing with them. This book is one of the reasons why that was the case.

ASSASSIN'S APPRENTICE (and the Farseer Trilogy) by Robin Hobb: I'm sure that the Farseer trilogy wasn't my first exposure to the first person POV, but it's the first one I remember, and it certainly set the bar for all those that came after. Hobb was the first author I ever read who really, really didn't shy away from having terrible things happen to her characters, and the fact that Fitzchivalry Farseer was--and still is, for me--one of the most grounded and sympathetic characters in fantasy fiction made his trials all the more heart wrenching.

NEVER DEAL WITH A DRAGON (and other Shadowrun novels) by Robert N. Charrette: In retrospect, the fact that I used to buy tabletop roleplaying game modules and construct adventures solely for myself to enjoy seems a bit pathetic. I was an only child whose few friends just weren't interested in "playing pretend"--but really, I didn't mind, not when making those stories was such a joyful process. Shadowrun was my first exposure to genre-bending and cyberpunk and the novels were always fun in and of themselves, and useful as resources for my own stories.

GOD TALES by Nil Guillemette: I'm not sure which one of these books I first read, but I know that after I finished the first book, I went back to the St. Paul store and bought all the other available volumes (only a few were available at the time--now of course there are more than thirty). Even in my youth I was never comfortable with the harshness, rigidity, and simple inconsistency of certain Catholic teachings. These books presented in their stories --many of them with speculative elements--a morality that I understood, one where the focus was on love and reasonableness and not punishment. I still remember vividly one story which had Mother Mary defending a sinner in a makeshift legal trial, and successfully proving that all it took was one selfless act in a lifetime to shield a soul from the fires of hell. The early books in this series played a huge part in my ethical development.

THE EYE OF THE WORLD (and the Wheel of Time) by Robert Jordan: This was the series that defined epic fantasy for me and a generation of readers. The series lost me toward the middle, and with no end in sight I stopped reading… but when the able Brandon Sanderson brings Robert Jordan's saga to a close, I'll read it straight through from beginning to end.

NOBODY'S SON by Sean Stewart: Most of the books I gravitated to were parts of a series, as opposed to stand alone novels, mostly because those were the books that dominated the shelves in those days, so Nobody's Son was a bit of a strange choice for me and the bookstores both. I never regretted my decision though. This book was the first to show me how to put a twist on an older story in order to make it new -- or maybe it's just that by this point I'd read enough to realize when tropes were being subverted, as in this case where the novel starts from the point which, in most other stories, would be the end of the tale.

THE MAGIC OF RECLUCE (and other Recluce books) by L.E. Modesitt Jr: Modesitt's writing was like nothing I'd ever seen before, with a rigor and consistency I admire to this day. The level of thought he put into his magic system made it seem real to me, and the level of detail he put in his description of everyday jobs (in the first book, wood carving; in a later book, forging/engineering) made them seem magical.

LEGEND by David Gemmell: Gemmell's books were comfort food for me, my equivalent of (high quality) Hollywood blockbusters, packed to overflowing with action and thrills and heroism. Legend was my very first "siege warfare" fantasy story, and also my first "old warrior comes out of retirement" story, and it's still the standard against which all similar tales are measured.

A PLAGUE OF ANGELS by Sherri S. Tepper: I'm a bit of a sap, so it's not strange for me to finish a book a bit teary eyed, but no other book has made me weep like a candy lover at the dentist. In a strange way, I've always felt that it was this book--more than any homily or teacher--that taught me the meaning and value of sacrifice and the cross.

THE MYTHOLOGY CLASS by Arnold Arre: The fact that I own the original four issue version of Arre's first graphic novel is a point of pride for me -- my proof that I was there when the komiks industry began to evolve into a new form. It was the first work of fiction I’d ever read to include -- to celebrate -- elements of Philippine folklore and myth, and no doubt because of that, it's the first book by a Filipino that I ever fell in love with. Much of my interest in local myth and legend can be traced back to this particular "class" -- and I've been learning ever since.

Honorable Mentions:

* The Lone Wolf series (gamebooks and novelizations)

* Wizard's First Rule (and the Sword of Truth books)

* Ender's Game (and the Ender Quartet)

* The Dragonbone Chair (and the Memory, Sorrow and Thorn series)

* The Elenium and the Tamuli

* Sandman

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Carlo Go: Books I Read When I was a Teen

This list is from Carlo Go, a senior at UP Diliman taking up Business Economics. He is the School of Economics Representative to the USC - University Student Council.

Carlo is a former student.

I just realized that I'm not a teenager anymore. HAHAHAHA!!

1. Book Thief by Markus Zuzak
2. Life of Pi by Yann Martel
3. Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami
4. Atonement by Ian Mc Ewan
5. The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
6. Disgrace by J.M. Coetzee
7. The Alexandria Link by Steve Berry
8. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
9. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon
10. The Odyssey by Homer

I read most of these books during the latter part of my teenage years. Most of the books that I love devouring would be Man Booker winners. These books helped me get through my college life and my somewhat insane personal life. I couldn't imagine my college life without these books. :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Mike Rvera: Books I Read When I Was a Teenager

Mike Rivera, writer and food blogger, recollects memories of the books she read as a teen and why!

1. Agatha Christie books- particularly preferred the stories featuring Hercule Poirot.

2. Futureshock by Alvin Toffler- was very hard to read. I was just a High School senior. it was just fascinating to read about how someone envisioned the future. I got myself another copy recently and still amazed how many of Alvin Toffler's theories played out true 20 years after reading it.

3. Jean Auel's Clan of the Cave Bear and Valley of Horses- was amazed how one could tell a story of a time before language was invented.

4. A Past Revisited and Continuing Past by Renato Constantino- was required reading in 4th year social studies but it left me amazed that history could be so anti-colonist. It felt subversive to read it even post EDSA Revolution. I eventually took to reading it on my own time.

5. Isaac Asimov's Foundation series- discovered this summer after graduating from High School.

6. 1984 by George Orwell

7. The Exorcist- Scared the shit out of me but I read it twice!

8. Tom Clancy Novels- I would read them after my father finished reading his copy.

9. Sweet Valley High- Was through with Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys and I thought the Bobsey Twins were lame.

10. Mills & Boon- This was my high school equivalent of erotica.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Ramon Sunico: Books I Read When I Was a Teenager

And so, the carnival begins! Ramon Sunico, publisher, writer, poet and PBBY Treasurer enumerated fifteen plus two books he enjoyed reading as a teenager.

I was a Marvel Comics fan too-- my letter was published in Submariner 5.

Grade 7
The Oz series (Baum and then Thompson)
(favorites Rinkitink in Oz, The Emerald City of Oz)
The Hardy Boys series
Tom Swift series

High School

Drawing the Head and Hands by Andrew Loomis
Animal Farm by George Orwell
The Little Prince by Antoine de St Exupery
The Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien
The Hobbit by J R R Tolkien
A Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein
Personae (poems) by Ezra Pound
Villa's Poems 55
Dune Trilogy by Frank Herbert
Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury
Turning On by Rasa Gustaitis
The Chronicles of Narnia by C S Lewis

Journey to the East by Herman Hesse
and The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Zarah Gagatiga: Books I Read When I Was a Teenager

Teen Read Week begins and here's the blog's little activity to celebrate the event. From October 17 to 23, guest bloggers will be featured in the blog and their top ten readings when they were teenagers. It will definitely date us. Age and time aside, books will definitely mark a generation. Just like music, books have their beat!

Here goes!

1. S.E. Hinton's The Outsiders - discovered this one from a school mate. I loved the theme on isolation and belonging that I asked my mom to check her library for books written by the author. She was successful! She borrowed That Was Then, This Is Now, Rumble Fish and Tex.

2. Richard Peck's Close Enough To Touch - a love story about a guy coping with his girlfriend's death. Like S.E. Hinton, I searched for books by Richard Peck and enjoyed The Unfinished Portrait of Jessica and one book he wrote that deals with teen suicide. Geez, I forgot the title. Just recently, I finished Peck's Here Lies the Librarian. Fabulous!

3.Madeline L'Engle's A Wrinkle In Time - my first foray into sci-fi! After L'Engle, I read Bradburry and Asimov.

4. Judy Blume's Tiger Eyes - another crisis coping themed book. Sigh. Now you have an idea how morose I was as a teen!

5. Katherin Patterson's Jacob Have I Loved - I liked this better than Bridge to Terabithia. What attracted me to the book was its cover. A girl holding a seashell. How sentimental! But the book blew my mind as I read the journey of the characters to self discovery. In the end, they grew up fine. At that point in my young adult life, I was so anxious of the future. The book gave me hope.

6. Harlequin and Mills and Boon Roamnces - Yes. I read them.

7. Sweet Dreams and Sweet Valley High - a teenage reader's rite of passage.

8. Erich Segal's Love Story - again, I read this novel because my classmates in high school were talking about it. So I borrowed the book from a classmate who found the copy in her aunt's old book shelf. We girls were so in love with Oliver. And by the end of the school year, we felt so confident like Jennifer, we could take on college smack in the face! Loved Segal's writing too!

9. Some required reading in college freshman that I will always remember - Paz Marquez-Benitez's Dead Stars; Lord of the Flies by William Golding; Oedipus Rex; Villa's Footnote to Youth; poems by Emily Dickenson; Great Expectations by Charles Dickens.

10. Laro sa Baga as serialized in Liwayway magzine.

Watch out for more bloggers sweetening the pot of the blog's Young Adult reading and literacy carnival. Happy reading!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Books With Beat: Teen Read Week 2010

Books rock! I'll be coming up with a list of books I read as a teenager. I will also invite guest bloggers to participate in the celebration. I hope that this would fuel more teens reading as the adults who surround them are readers too!

Happy reading!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Rizal and Ambeth Ocampo

Next year, Rizal is going to be one hundred and fifty years old. In the past three weeks, I've been to three places where Rizal's memory and history is preserved. It's not unlikely that he'll be in the book I am completing. What is a collection of Filipino folk tales with out the mention or the inclusion of Jose Rizal?

Today, I was with Yumi Pitargue for an unguided tour of Manila - the Cathedral, San Agustin Church, Luneta and of course, Fort Santiago. I could not help but ask her who taught her Rizal in college. Her answer -- AMBETH OCAMPO. She said his name with a twinkle in her eyes.

This made me ask further what she thinks of his lessons and classes on Rizal. She replied, "He's like a stand up comic!" Her reply made me think. It only goes to show how creative and imaginative a teacher Ambeth Ocampo is. I sat in several of his lectures on Rizal and Philippine History and yes, like Yumi, I was engaged.

Funny how a former colleague who has chaired the Social Studies department in my former school raised an eyebrow when I told her that a common friend has attended Ambeth Ocampo's lectures. I was intrigued by her reaction since she's a member of the National Historical Institute. In her opinion, Ambeth Ocampo fictionalizes history so much that facts are obscured from history. Oh well. I've heard this one before.

I enjoyed my history classes since grade school till college and yes, I aced the subject. I had teachers, like my former colleague, who gave a big deal on dates and facts but for me, history is the construction of meaning. To be able to do this, one needs the skill of imagination; of reading beyond the lines. And I discovered this on my own despite the traditional instruction I got from my history teachers. Beyond dates and facts, history is a clump of STORIES - real or not, who cares? The traditionalists, maybe. But, fact or fiction, it is essential to derive meaning from these stories.

This is what Ambeth Ocampo does, to me, at least. That's how I see it. He goes beyond facts and trivia, dates and time lines and challenges you, the student, the reader of his articles and the listeners of his lectures to IMAGINE history. Is that wrong? I say that it is a creative way to make meaning from the past.

When I told Yumi of the many critics her former Rizal professor has on his methods, she simply said, "But I remember more of Rizal through his teachings. It was fun."

I know, Yumi. I know.

To Rizal who was a teacher too; to Prof. Ambeth Ocampo; and to all the teachers who've made boring classes come alive, belated Happy Teacher's Day!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Book Launch: Top Ten Travels

Scott Lee Chua, a former student, will be launching his books about places he's been to. Congrats Scott!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Dear Librarian: Library Staff Supervisory Program

This month's letter sender is Rose Marie Y. Quilantang, a school librarian from Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu. She wanted to know more about a supervisory program for the library. Below is her email in verbatim --

Hi Maam gud day! Hope you're doing fine.

I'm a librarian and is confused on how to make a supervisory program. Can I ask help from you? or any sample or guide. Please help me. Am working in one of the private school here in Lapu-Lapu City Cebu.

God bless you always and thank you in advance.

Respectfully yours,

Rose Marie Y. Quilantang

This is a very interesting topic that would help many library managers out there. I have invited a guest blogger to lend advise to Rose Marie. I will give my two cents worth as well. Keep visiting for our responses!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Spirit of PaperTigers Project

Seek and you shall find. Ask and it shall be given.

Many thanks to Pacific Rim Voices and the The Spirit of PaperTigers project for these books. Recipient of the donations is the Wawa Elementary School Library.
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