Thursday, December 6, 2018

2018 In Review: The DepEd Story Writing Project 1 of 2

A teacher shares her book review
It is already December and with the busyness of the Christmas season biting on our heels, here I am making a long list of wonderful things that have happened to me in 2018. It is not an easy year, in all aspects of my life, the country and the world. But, in times like this, I channel into Uncle Iroh's teaching: hope is something you give yourself. A Jesuit once told me, give up hope and you might as well give up on life.

And so, I persist.

I rage against the dying of the light.

In my own way, I light a candle in this gathering dark. I have my wand ready and my patronus charm memorized by heart to drive away the Dementors when they come to steal away any form of happiness I know and cherish.

So, this entire month of December, I will be posting happy thoughts and ideas conjured, planned and implemented including events, activities, projects and not so happy stuff happening at work that lead to possibilities. Anything to illustrate that, in the age of Duterte and Donald Trump, hope floats.

Let's begin with stories and storytelling.

I have had the amazing experience of visiting Mindoro, Cagayan De Oro and Antipolo this year for the conduct of workshops in storytelling, writing stories for children and school library development. I have blogged about my experience in Mindoro through a guest post by Joy Solina, Bernadette Solina Wolf's sister who was with us the entire time as "media staff". Read her article on the workshop through this link.

Mini-book Making Activity 
In Mindoro, I met wonderful people. Alice "Peanuts" Panares, art educator and the epitome of everything positive and radiant in this world. Literacy Advocate, Ana Bacudio who is building a reading and writing center in Mindoro. Alvin Delen, the division librarian of the DepEd there who is working so diligently in creating learning materials and resources for the Learning Resources Materials Development Services (LRMDS). Teacher Annie Lee Masongsong who learned the language of the Mangyan so that she can understand them and teach them well. Last I heard, Teacher Annie has won an award in recognition of her works with the Mangyan.

The three day workshop helped teachers in Mindoro to clarify their purpose for writing and creating storybooks. The impetus for this is to win in the regional and national contests run by the DepEd. But, I know, the three faciltators, Peanuts, Bernadette and myself imparted in them the long term values of the art of story telling, writing and book making.

We hope to go back to Mindoro in 2019 with more friends who can further improve the ideas and concepts we shared with the K-3 teachers in Calapan. What's amazing for me is that, I always learn from the teachers of my workshops. Much respect and admiration to the tremendous job they do in the classroom. And there they were, willing to face another challenge of writing, telling and creating story books, not just to win in a contest, but to construct meaning and knowledge from their cultural and social experiences.

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