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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.

jasms

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.

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.

Hey Kids! If you want to find out fascinating and interesting links between animals and our everyday world, you have to watch Discovery Kids WILD BUT TRUE. Wild But True will be shown every Tuesday at 5:00pm starting December 2, 2014.

Encores are every Saturday at 9:30am and 1;30pm.

Discovery Kids Wild but True

Wild But True will have Robert Irwin, a naturalist and Isabel Yamazaki, a science geek team up to show how science has made us students of Mother Nature. Each episode will explore nature’s amazing solutions for the different problems in the wild and how we humans can use these blueprints to make our world safer, greener and more efficient and more fun!

Giles, the digital friend who will provide artificial intelligence will help them along the way. He will provide clues that willlead to the answers to the puzzling questions they need answers and help Robert and Isabel hook up with scientists, researchers and developers who will further explain the technology behind their interesting topics.

Experiments will further help them (and you!) better understand the different concepts, features and abilities intrinsic to the wild world.

Are you ready for Discovery Kids WILD BUT TRUE?

Mark your calendars on December 2, 2014 5 pm.

 

Compassion is a word that spans a whole wide range of concepts. Compassion is an emotion, a (deep) awareness people feel when they see the sufferings of other people. This compassion fuels the motivation and the desire to help relieve others of these sufferings.

“Compassion is often seen as the foundation of morality”, according to the author of “Just Babies, The Origin of Good and Evil,” Professor Paul Bloom of Yale University. “Compassion is what you could call caring, concern, fellow feeling, the idea that other people matter to us,” he further adds.
Nature of Compassion
One of the characteristics that distinguishes psychopaths from “normal” people is the lack of fellow feeling or lack of compassion. One may be highly intelligent and exhibits the same emotions and desires other people, but if he doesn’t care for others, he is a deviant. He will get something from another person like money or a possession and does not care if he hurts anyone when he does. He will even kick a dog when he feels bored, for example. If he is given a pep talk about him hurting others, he wouldn’t be convinced about changing his ways because he just doesn’t care at all.

The nature of compassion, of being compassionate comes from the feeling that other people matter to us and that we have a sense of what is right and what is wrong. What is right and what is wrong are debatable at times, depending on cultural and religious beliefs and practices among other things.

People are inherently fundamentally kind.

Despite having differences with other people, there are basic concepts and situations that are deemed universally acceptable as needing compassion or feeling a degree of caring and compassion.

Compassion starts at home

Aling Lita used to be a sewer, one who is involved with the tasks of sewing. She still is sewing but at present, she oversees a few other sewers in her home at Quezon City Gawad Kalinga Trese. Two other sewers have sewing machines and work in their homes.

Electrolux transforms worn out clothes into quilts with Gawad Kalinga’s Trese

Together with her husband who is the cutter of the patterns they need to put together to be able to sew quilts to be given to babies, they make up a team of sewers with a good business plan.

Electrolux transforms worn out clothes into quilts with Gawad Kalinga’s Trese

Blog Photos

The bayanihan spirit, the selfless act of giving help to those who need help especially during trying times and calamities have made us Filipinos create ways to do unique things.

In this regard, Electrolux, a global leader in home appliances, with its Delightful-E Simple campaign to collect used clothes and wash these clean before donating to various groups, jump-started a unique idea to transform these used (and washed!) clothes to be made into quilts to be given to babies and children in orphanages and other communities.

Electrolux transforms worn out clothes into quilts with Gawad Kalinga’s Trese

Working together with Gawad Kalinga’s Trese Community in Quezon City, Electrolux will upcycle donated used clothes to make quilts.

Electrolux believes that there must be dignity in the clothes that we donate. To make sure that every piece of clothing is in good condition, we will sort out the worn out, unwearable ones, then upcycle them into quilts with the help of Trese” said Andrea Pionilla, Electrolux Marketing Manager. “With this partnership, we aim not only to give quilts to children and new born babies but also another source of livelihood for this Payatas community.

Partnering with a group of men who make prints on shirts and bags in the same community, these quilts are really made with love. Mike Go of Human Nature oversees the business and guide these groups with their businesses.

Blog Photos

If you and your family and friends want to be a part of this meaningful advocacy, you can donate some pre-loved clothes to be made into quilts in any of these locations:
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Me. I lovingly say soothing words with matching hugs and kisses when I wake the two younger children around 5am during school days. Twenty minutes after that, I yell at them “Baka dumating na ang service hindi pa kayo tapos, hindi pa nakakain ng breakfast. Dalian nyo na! Blah…blah…blah…” in the effort to hurry them up because they haven’t eaten breakfast yet and the school service is already waiting at the gate. Yes, I have done this, at 5:30am. Tsk.
BJ, a teenager. “I hate it when my mom yells. She makes me feel like I’m stupid. The more she yells, the more I want to do what she doesn’t want me to do. Talking to me and not yelling is better because the more she yells, the more I shut down my brain and stop listening to her.”
HK, a pre-teen. “Natatakot ako pag sumisigaw si Mama ko. Parang lagi na lang mali ang ginagawa ko. Baka sa galit niya pag sumisigaw siya, masaktan niya ako.”
YA, office worker. “Our boss is a yeller. He loses his temper quickly and does not hesitate to yell at anyone of us if we make a mistake. Sana kung ginagawa niya yun in private, eh hindi, sa harap pa ng mga officemates namin. We are not happy in the office anymore. We are thinking of a mass resignation, para matauhan siya.”

Why yell when you can perfectly say your piece in peace?

We have yelled for a thousand different reasons but first and foremost of these reasons would be because we want to assert that, yes, we are right and that the other person is wrong.

We yell because we want to prove a point and get our message across.
We yell because we want to be heard.
We yell because we feel superior to the one we are yelling at.
We yell because we are in a hurry and the others are slowing us down.
Why, we even yell virtually when we use ALL CAPS and end these with a lot of !!!!!
Sometimes we yell just because …

On the other hand, have you ever been yelled at?

Not cool.

Do you remember the last time you were yelled at?

We would want to forget yes, but the scene seems to keep playing in our head.

Mothers who yell.

A certain mom thinks her son is studying online but all the while he is visiting sites to see what he can buy at the online guitar store. 

Habitual yelling.

Yelling when one can perfectly speak well.

Alternatives to yelling.

Don’t we just want to know what yellers can do otherwise?

Breaking the yelling cycle is not easy.

HOW?

Read more here: Are You a Yeller? How to Break the Yelling Habit.

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