By Sister Nancy Asbill
I wanted to write a brief overview of some of the thoughts and impressions I had on this last trip in February 2016 to the Philippines. One highlight for me was that we had more opportunities this trip to spend time with the children at the school. The day after we arrived we went to the school and spent two days with the children, ministering the living Word of God to them, also including some of the mothers. According to the children’s grade level the word was broken down giving the children a clearer understanding of God’s plan for them. In those two days we were able to have 16 meetings. It really went well and we thank God for the privilege that we could be there.
Later in the week we went back to the school and this time Sister Rita and I were able to observe the different classes. We divided up the classes evenly so we could cover all the morning and afternoon classes. I should mention before we did this, Brother Mark, Sister Rita and I went around to each class taking pictures of the children with their new clothes. Less than a year ago there was an inspiring story in the news about a 100 year old woman who had sewn over 1000 dresses to send to girls in need in Africa. This woman’s story gave us the vision to make a dress for each of our girls at KMMS. There were a number of enthusiastic volunteers who helped us accomplish this goal. There were ladies from Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Texas, and the Czech Republic sewing special and unique dresses for each girl. It was such a blessing to see all the girls in their new attire including a hair piece. The boys also received brand new shirts, so they could feel special too. It was fun to go from class to class to take the pictures. Once all that was done we proceeded to go to each class to sit in on the lesson for that hour.
The first class I observed was the fourth grade class taught by Mrs. Rio Marie Dagtay. The lesson for that hour was math. She was telling me that she divides the week up so as to fit all the subjects in. Monday-Wednesday-Friday they work on Math, Science, English, computer and Bible, which is every day. Tuesday and Thursday they do “Makabayan” which involves Filipino culture, where they learn where capital cities are located, regions of the Philippines, and where food production comes from, to name a few of the topics. They also do “Mape” which is music, arts, and PE and “Epp” which is Health and Home Economics.
I was there on Friday just when they began their math lesson. Mrs. Rio began by saying to the children, “What is the order of operation?” and in one accord they said, “MDAS” (Multiply, divide, add and subtract). On the chalk board she had written this problem: 1. 15-3×4=N. She once again said, “Okay, what is the order of operation?” and they again said, “MDAS.” So together they worked out the problem 15-12=3, answer N is the number 3. All this was taught in English which was nice for me, but it was impressive to see how well the children understand as well. She proceeded to write another problem on the board: 2. 4×5+3=N. The class again worked it out together, very quickly I might add. My question to myself was, “Was I learning this in fourth grade?” The answer was 20+3=23, N is 23. Now she wrote another problem on the board and said, “Is this easy or hard?” The students did not seem to think it was too hard. 3. 4×2+7=N. The class worked for a moment and then hands began to rise and the answer was given. 8+7=N, 8+7=15, N=15.
Mrs. Rio kept writing problems on the board and now they had to quietly work out the problem themselves and raise their hand when they had the correct answer. Emanuel raised his hand with the right answer. Mrs. Rio said, “Okay, let us give Emanuel a Banana clap.” They did the motions of peeling a banana, peel, peel, peel, and then acted like they were taking a bite of the banana and said, “Yum!” It was pretty cute watching the “Banana clap.”
Other problems were written on the board, each time getting a little harder and each time enthusiastically the students raised their hands with the right answer. The class is run very orderly and the children are attentive and seem to have a good understanding. Mrs. Rio is doing a great job. She did tell me that Math happens to be one of her class’s favorite subjects and it shows.
The next class I went to was Miss Marilyn Cagadas fifth grade. The fifth grade is an all-day class where the other grades have morning sessions and afternoon sessions for the students. When I entered the room, there were two students at the end of the room standing side by side. On the count of three they were to race to the chalk board and see who could first spell in English the word Miss Marilyn had given. Some of the words given were navigate, committee, knowledge, patience, healthy and opportunity. The girls and boys were divided into teams competing to see which team would win. I am not sure what the students liked better – the run to the chalk board or the actual spelling of the words. Some words came easier than others. When Miss Marilyn had them spell beautiful, one boy got it very quickly. They were making that chalk do its work as they got to the board and began to write very fast. Sometimes it took a few tries to get the word, but they kept trying, some knowing the words better than others. This seems to be a good way to practice, practice. You could see this would be a good way to help them learn English. The winning team was going to each get a little prize. We thank Miss Marilyn for her enthusiasm and her dedication to keep her students excited about school.
As in the fourth grade the fifth grade continues to do all the same subjects including “Makabayan.” After the spelling drill they began their Filipino lesson, which meant they were speaking their language. I listened for a bit, but of course could not understand it so I proceeded to the next class.
My next and last class to visit for the day was Miss Jezreel Diaz’s second grade class. I found the class empty but soon discovered they were in the computer room with Mrs. Janice Angelle Andig, the computer teacher. On Fridays the second grade class studies all the ins and outs of a computer.
When I first entered the room the children were coloring. I am thinking to myself, “How does drawing help the children learn the workings of a computer?” My answer was soon to come. Mrs. Janice began to explain to me how the children were practicing what they soon would be drawing on the computer. She handed me a copy of their book for the class. The title of the book is Cyber Kids Level 2.
Mrs. Janice then proceeded to ask the children questions like, “What is an input device? What is the output device and storage devices?” The children chimed in answering correctly. Needless to say, I was impressed! These little second graders have learned how to use a mouse, they together told me what www meant, WORLD WIDE WEB. Through their Cyber book they are learning to do shape and color groups and how to use the tool brush and air brush. They are able to draw and color pictures. They have memory verses such as Galatians 3:26, Ephesians 6:1 and Mark 10:14 typed on the computer. Mrs. Janice, with the help of the children’s book, is giving the children a very sound foundation on the ins and outs of a computer.
Let me give one of the examples from their book:
Example how to use: Select tool, Crop tool, Rotate tool.
1. On the Home tab in the image group, click the arrow under select, and then click the kind of selection you want to make.
2. Drag the pointer to select the part of the picture you want to show.
3. In the image group click crop.
The directions in the book of course continue, but this gives you an idea of the level of learning they are acquiring. In the book they also learn computer ethics as well as how to set up an e-mail account, plus the workings of the Internet. They are doing basic Windows as well as MS paint so they are able to draw on the computer.
In this world of technology I can see these little second graders are being equipped to be able to use a computer wisely. For me I was most impressed that they are using the computers for their Bible memory verses; this Grandmother was pleased. Thank you, Miss Jezreel and Mrs. Janice, for your great job in helping these second graders learn.
Hope you enjoyed reading and taking this little tour of the second, fourth and fifth grade classes at Kingdom Message Ministry School with me. The staff and teachers are truly doing a marvelous job and the proof is evident in the children. What more can one ask than to see young lives touched for Jesus.