Sunday, May 15, 2011
What is an ideal kinder classroom like?
With the Universal Kindergarten Program by the Department of Education (DepEd) being implemented this June, many teachers and principals may find themselves asking this question.
To give them an idea of what type of kinder classrooms appeal to young children, DepEd Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES) trainees recently organized an exhibit showcasing ideal kindergarten classrooms.
In response to the challenge posed by Education Secretary Armin Luistro for them to be advocates of the Universal Kindergarten campaign, this year’s 150 SPES trainees—divided into five groups—built miniatures of “child-friendly” classrooms filled with storybooks, puzzles, and toys.
According to SPES Marielle Pigtain, cooperation among group members was the driving force of the project. “We also make it a point that every member will be allowed by their respective offices to spend their vacant hours decorating the ‘classroom’,” she said.
Her group, in particular, scheduled shifts so that all group members could attend to this special assignment without neglecting their office duties.
The SPES’ classroom exhibit assignment is the department’s way of encouraging the public, including the central office employees and the private sector, to actively involve themselves in the fulfillment of the government’s goal of providing every Filipino a brighter future through quality education. The designs were mainly based on concepts such as fairytales and fables.
Meanwhile, the zero-based budgeting concept enabled the students to draw on their creativity and resourcefulness. “Most of the materials used by our group are recycled like cartons and used colored paper. There were even some members who brought decorations from their houses,” said SPES trainee Manuela Balaguer.
Another SPES trainee, Enzo Vidal, the exhibit goes beyond showing to their outputs but also the value of sharing and giving for the cause of education. “This reminds us that education is a shared responsibility of everyone. Even we, students and out-of-school youths, in our own little ways, could do something for the betterment of our preschool education,” he said.
Luistro commended the efforts of the SPES trainees in coming up with the exhibit. “Since the goal of expanding the coverage of preschool education is to better prepare our young learners, we believe that part of this preparation should be to ensure that the learning process inside the classroom will be fun for the young learners,” he said. “Classroom set-up should be able to attract kids to learn and value education given their young age,” he said.
The secretary also told them to come up with a way so they can take part in collecting toy and book donations within their neighborhood, families, peers, classmates and friends.
“If all of us pitch in for this donation drive, we could transform a typical kindergarten classroom into a laboratory that can better prepare our young learners to the real world of formal schooling and provide them greater chances to complete their education,” Luistro said.
Source: Manila Bulletin