Issue of September 29, 2019
Mt. Province
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DepEd urges IPED teachers to cite examples found in ‘ili’
by Ofelia C. Empian

IP EDUCATION -- As part of strengthening the rich culture and tradition of Benguet, select teachers from the 13 towns converged for the annual Indigenous Peoples Education Congress on Sept. 26 at the Benguet Sports Center Multipurpose gym in Wangal, La Trinidad. Part of the celebration were IP games such as pinikpikan duel or dressing of the chicken for pinikpikan, bayo or rice pounding competitions, and tug-of-war, among other IP games that strengthen the bond of the teaching community. -- Ofelia Empian

Teachers in the culture-rich Cordillera should teach pupils and students using examples found in the community for learners to know more about their community.

Department of Education Indigenous Peoples Education Consultant Maria Lourie Victor emphasized this during the IPED Congress of Benguet District held at the Benguet Sports Center multipurpose gym in Wangal, La Trinidad, Benguet on Sept. 26.

Victor, a Cordilleran, said it has been a practice in the past for teachers and DepEd to use general examples in its teaching materials.

“We used to learn the same things before; it is more on general learning that’s why there is this gap,” she said. 

She cited the example on the teaching of sampaguita as national flower, stating the flower does not grow in all parts of the country, hence some local learners cannot relate to it.

That’s where IP education comes in, she said. In order to bridge the gap bet-ween learners and their lessons that is why localizing learning materials for the students to understand their subjects and connect it with their surroundings is vital.

This would then bring more appreciation of the learners’ culture and local heritage.

She said learning should not be limited within the four corners of classrooms and teachers must relate their lessons in the community.

“IPED recognizes the importance of community, as part of the education process. IPED recognizes diversity there are many types of communities in the country. IPED recognizes and respects cultures that are there in our communities. Therefore, the challenge now for Benguet is how do we contribute to the growth of our learners in relation to their cultural heritage and in relation to the lives of their communities,” she said.

She urged the teachers of the various towns of Benguet present during the event to guide learners to understand their communities or ili.

By letting the learners understand their own culture and heritage, they would have more sense of belongingness and identity, especially as Cordillerans. At present, there are still misconceptions when it comes to the various indigenous communities in the country, which they hope would be achieved through IPED.

DepEd is getting feedback on some textbooks that are also adding more misconceptions due to the wrong information and authorities are working on correcting these.

Victor emphasized the need to teach the students to go beyond learning but understanding their very culture.

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