Exploreum’s 3-Day Summer Camp 2015 is a learn-through-play experience which aims to stimulate children’s curiosity through memorable activities while encouraging camaraderie through interactions with other explorers in the summer camp program, and exposing the children to the wonderful world of Science particularly Marine Biology.

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For this year’s Exploreum Summer Camp, the children participants got the privilege to be Marine Explorers by earning badges for each quest that they accomplish. For three afternoons, the children learned,, through different activities, concepts about the ocean and everything related to it. They were able to utilize the different SM Lifestyle venues like the IMAX, XD:4D cinema, and the skating rink. They did a lot of exciting activities to enhance their learning experiences: painting, playing, skating, watching movies, solving puzzles and catching fish, all these geared towards learning the foundations of Marine Biology.

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Some of the Exploreum’s jam packed activities were the following:

1. Deep Dark Sea Painting – painting posters using glow in the dark paints
2. Away From Home – fishing fishes stuck in slime-o-mania and putting them back to where they should be
3. Feed the Marine Creature – getting to know the food web and apply your knowledge by feeing the sea creatures
4. Aquarium Secret Message – looking for hidden messages in the aquarium and putting these together to find out what it says by using a spy camera
5. Into the Deep Treasure Hunt – completing the time list by searching in the dark room with minimum light
6. Water World Obstacle Course – jump, climb, reach,many crawl to find “EXPLOREUM” letters around the course
7. Save the Whale – fill the pool with balls so the whale can roll back into the ocean

The Different Sea Creatures: the Exploreum Summer Camp 2015 is divided to three different groups, depending on the children’s needs and learning capabilities:

1. The Dolphins – ages 4 – 6 years old
2. The Orcas – 7 – 9 years old
3. The Sharks – ages 10 – 12 years old

The Marine Explorer’s Kit

Marine explorers get to take home the following:

1. Amazing Race Passes
2. Take-home Experiment Kits
3. An Exploreum Summer Camp Shirt
4. Microscope for 7-12 years old
5. Marine Explorer Badge
6. SpongeBob Poster

 

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Upcoming Activities for Exploreum
The Exploreum Quiz Bee is a nationwide competition engaging about 90 schools per level in a test of wit, intellect and speed. The Exploreum’s National Quiz Bee will run from July 2015 to February 2016. The winning school gets Php 1 million to fund and encourage varied school programs.

Today I finally took the time to sort though our school supplies plastic box to see what I can put back and what I will consider as trash.

So far we still have a lot of these things:

• Pencils and erasers
• Unopened big box of crayons
• Art/colored/construction paper
• ¼ and ½ sized lined papers
• A pack each of long & short envelopes and long & short folders
• Colored folders
• A lot of used but still ok to recycle folders and envelopes
• A few graphing or Math papers
• Long and short bond papers (we use A4 so we still need to buy these sizes)
• Folder fasteners, staple wires and a few rolls of tapes
• 1/8 illustration boards
• poster paints that dried up a little but can be remedied with some water
• Paint brushes
• 1 drawing book
• 1 ruler
• index cards
• 2 pairs of scissors but one had to go to trash because it just got broken the other day
• 2 file folders

Into the trash went dried up markers, crayons that look tired and worn, scrap papers, broken rulers/scissors, almost empty tape rolls and other stuff.

The plastic envelopes for art supplies just need to be cleaned, otherwise these are still ok to use. TIP: do not scrimp on these, buy the ones that look sturdy even if these are a bit more expensive than others.

For the coming school year, we need to take note of whatever stuff we still have to avoid overbuying. The stuff listed above pretty much sums up what children need for school, unless the teachers ask for specific things like a here folder or a notebook with pink cover. As for the “color coding” notebooks, no sweat for these, just use colored papers to wrap the cover to complete that requirement.

As I have written in another post, having your own school supplies at home, though at first seems a bit too expensive to invest in, would surely make a big difference once the school year starts. Why? You just need to get that long brown folder from your supply rather than go out of your way to buy one from the bookstore or the nearest store that probably sells it. This way, you not only saved on resources you will use for that ONE folder or envelope, you save your sanity too.

It has been months since I’ve written anything in this blog. I’ve been busy with family matters and catching up on my reading and watching of missed TV series favorites.

There are so many changes that has happened in our family and these, like when we used to answer scrapbook questions, are just too many to elaborate.

Blogging, though at a standstill as opposed to real life events that are not posted online, is not a forgotten passion. I still write. I still submit published articles online. Truth be told, I don’t like to call myself a blogger anymore because in some instances, others tend to attach something negative to this “title”.

Year after year, I tell myself I will write more. I still have a lot of ideas and I really have to find time to write because I am bursting with ideas I want to share and not because I have a deadline or a blogging event press release that has a time table.

I like to think I can challenge those few people who come across my blog reading not just about special education but about how to be good parents to their children or how to bring change to themselves and the people around them.

Pretty big to aspire for, right? Right.

Anyway… for this coming school year, I don’t have a child in elementary school anymore and because of that special event, I wrote about Graduation and the Pinoy Family in this article. The son is an incoming 9th grader under the new Philippines K-12 program. The eldest is an incoming Junior in another university. Yep, my children all go to a university that has basic education level.

Professionally, I have several former students who are now college graduates and even a few have PRC licenses. I currently have three former students in college. For this development in the lives of my students and in my standing as a special Ed teacher, I wrote an article on the alternative courses for college students.

I promise to write more and hope to inspire myself to do just that.

Posted by julie @ 9:39 pm

Last year I wanted to dwell on one word that will help me throughout the year. I decided on the word INSPIRE to well, inspire me to do better and bigger things.

“I long to write, to inspire myself and others as well…

I long to “move the earth” with a few woven words, stringed in a few sentences in not so many paragraphs that will melt the hardened resolve, tug at heartstrings and make the mind wonder and wander.”

Did I inspire? Did I become an inspiration last year? I can’t answer that personally but I feel I did. From others telling me they replicated my simple recipes, to people who tell me that being a special education teacher is a noble profession to others who tell me that being a mom of three is difficult but I make it look easy, I think I inspired the few who took time to tell me these things.

This year, I want to focus again on one word that will define my actions and decisions for 2015: SIMPLIFY.

Simplify for me means…

  • Choosing my “battles”, those that are worthy of my time and effort
  • Zeroing on doing more work than doing more talk: Less Talk, More Action
  • Choosing to talk more sensibly 
  • De-cluttering by removing emotional baggage that makes the heart heavy and worries the mind
  • De-cluttering by removing things that invariably are deemed worthless except for taking up space
  • Not buying things that are not important (this we have been doing for a few years now that the children are older) that end up as clutter
  • Having achievable goals to lessen disappointments
  • Lessen artificial ingredients, both in food and in life. I don’t need fake food and fake people.
  • Give more importance to offline connections than online ones.
  • Write blog posts that will inspire others to feel better, do better and become better persons.

I can’t hold on to a lot of things that divide my time and make me lose focus on my goals.

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. ~Confucius

Posted by julie @ 12:35 pm
Shelved under About Town, Philippines

Museo Del Galeón, Inc together with the SM Group of Companies recently held a groundbreaking ceremony for The Galeón, which is slated to open in late 2015.

Called The Manila-Acapulco Galleon Museum, this cultural facility has 8,000 sq. m. featuring a full-scale reproduction of a galleon. The reproduction of this galleon will be based on a precise set of naval architectural plan published in Manila during the 18th century.

What was then just an idea is now fast becoming a reality,” said Hans T. Sy, president of SM Prime Holdings, Inc. Hans T. Sy graciously offered a beachfront location in the Mall of Asia complex as the site for the museum.

The Philippines and Mexico were trade trade and commerce partners, thus supporting the circulation of vital knowledge between the two countries is important.

The  Galeon will feature information that will throw light on the roots of today’s banking, shipping, commerce and cultural exchange in the Pacific Region.

From the Americas came silver, gold and potatoes while Europe traded wine, tools and furniture in exchange for Asian silk, spices and ceramics. For the Asian trade, bronze coins from Mexico and Peru were brought to Manila. It was not just the 300 year exchange that produced cultural change on both sides of the Pacific, boat-building in the Philippines transitioned into ship-building utilizing European designs.

It was in 2011 when Madame Margarita Zavala, the spouse of former Mexican President Felipe Calderon endorsed the plan to build a galleon museum in Manila.

The Galeon Groundbreaking Ceremony

His Excellency Ambassador Julio Camarena of Mexico and Hans T. Sy initiated the ground-breaking ceremony at the SM Mall of Asia. Also present was Pasay City Mayor, the Honorable Antonio G. Calixto. The program featured Ms. Marian Roces, Lead Curator of TAO Inc. as the keynote speaker, and Senator Edgardo J. Angara who is also a member of Museo Del Galeón, Inc.

Upon completion, The GALEÓN will command magnificent views of the glittering Manila Bay.

Construction will begin November 2014 with completion expected on the last quarter of 2015.

Click here for the full article. Thank you!

Grasshoppers. Caterpillars. Frogs. Leaves. Stones.

These were a few of the things my children brought for me from school. They also came home with faces streaked with (a bit of) dirt, socks (somewhat) black on the soles, knees of denim pants turned white (or brown )from kneeling on the floor to play board games, and the bottom back of white uniforms turned brown from sitting on steps while socializing with classmates. In the early grades, they brought mats and pillows to school because they had one-hour naps.

They came home excited, narrating what they did and learned. Sometimes, they showed off a portfolio of artworks they did in school.

They learned to play wonderful sentimental music with various instruments. Once, my eldest child, who was in the lyre and flute ensemble, serenaded nuns in a hospice. They played old songs which brought tears to the nuns’ eyes. Another time, they were invited to an expensive exclusive school for girls. My daughter said the campus was big but didn’t look friendly.

They had stage plays mounted in school and in other schools as well. I should know, because my son used to play a main character in one which enjoyed three runs.

They competed (and won!) with other schools in various intramurals.

My husband and eldest daughter joined a Father and Child campette twice while I stayed home for a change.

All my children enjoyed camping in school and with other schools in different venues. We celebrated and still continue to celebrate Earth Hour every year as a school year-ender for the Scouts.

Whatever was the child’s family’s religious preference was respected: there were Religion classes for Catholics and special classes for non-Catholics. There were interfaith prayers in programs when the school community is gathered.

These are just a few of my children’s experiences (and other children before them) going to school in JASMS or Jose Abad Santos Memorial School, the basic education department of the Philippine Women’s University (PWU) in Quezon City.

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The JASMS Way taught my children that learning is not defined by grades in report cards and that learning is done not just within the four walls of the classrooms.

I have three children and all of them, except for the few years we home-schooled the two younger ones during their early grades, are or were JASMS-QC students. As of this writing, I only have two children in JASMS-QC because the eldest graduated high school two years ago, with a Loyalty Award pinned on her graduation dress.

The JASMS learning experience

Where we live, we have a lot of school options, but we chose JASMS for our children and these are some of the reasons why:

1. JASMs helped our children develop their self-confidence through a balance of learning academics and nurturing their gifts in the other intelligences traditional schools do not give importance to.
2. The school focuses on wholistic development, such that youngsters were able to hone their skills in the fields they excel in, whether theatre arts, music, sports, writing, speaking, visual arts, etc.
3. It offered a learned process that allowed children to value their self-worth, develop their confidence, sharpen their thinking processes and explore different ways to learn within and outside the classrooms.
4. I am a special needs teacher and having my children mingle with children who have special needs is very important to me. In JASMS, typically and atypically developing children learn side by side. Thus, they learn to respect and accept each other, regardless how differently they learn and cope.
5. The school and the parents work together in the children’s learning process.

One time, at the nearby supermarket, I noticed a young school boy who, at 7pm, was still squeaky clean, polo shirt still white and black pants with no marks on the knee part, looking like how he might do if he were on the way to school. I discreetly pointed him out to the children and said: “Look at the boy, still looking clean even at this time.”

The children were unanimous in saying that he looked like he did not have fun in school. “Di naman siya masaya.”

Masaya = happy.

Happy learning

The children were happy with the playground (muddy when it rains) and whatever was there they can play with. They did not mind the sometimes leaking classroom roofs or the flooding from EDSA during heavy thunderstorms. Children still went back to the school even if classrooms were submerged during Ondoy and the children’s books, mats, and most of the first-floor rooms were flooded and majority of the materials there were destroyed. (Thank you, QC and JASMS Parents Association, for having that creek/concrete barrier fixed.)

The children played happily in the only court in the quadrangle, even if they had to schedule basketball and volleyball practices till late because they had to share.

We witnessed a lot of performances in that court: Field Demo, Family Day, English Night, Drama Club performances, Grade 5 and 6 Turn-Over Ceremonies, Graduation Rites, First Friday Masses, Monday Flag Ceremonies, Camping Programs and Basketball and Volleyball Tournaments versus other schools.

This was the same court where performances often had to be stopped because it was raining and the audience had to wait for the weather to clear out. We didn’t complain about this much. For us parents, what mattered most was that our children loved the school, lock stock and barrel.

This is what the JASMS way is all about, that children have fun learning and that learning is fun.

Threat to the JASMS way

Lately though, the JASMS way is facing awesome challenges.

READ MORE HERE.

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