In response to my suggestion in an earlier post to have our own MLE Training Centers in the Philippines, instead of sending our own teachers to attend MLE training in Thailand–which is not a cheap option, Ched Arzadon of 171+ Talaytayan MLE sent the following email:
About the training, if you refer to our MLE strat plan, training is included both for inservice and pre-service. The inservice training has started with the national mle trainers training last month. It will go in 4 phases. We are also exploring the possibility of including it in the DepEd regional educators academy program and its national counterpart. For pre-service, we have explored integrating MLE in teachers education curriculum. PNU has started doing it. An MLE diploma program is being discussed with PNU, too. Another one is shaping up in the North. I will give you updates once I hear from the various proponents.
What I am thinking right now is to come up with an online project that will feature beginning reading stories for each language. It’s pretty much like the Pepe and Pilar series we read when we were young. It is not to translate stories but produce stories that speak about the unique places, food, practices, dances, etc., of each specific language group. For the higher grades, we can write stories about other places. We can call this something like stories in every Philippine language project. The idea is we have a website with the following features:
- Guidelines in writing a beginning reading story
- Guidelines for illustrating a story
- Guidelines in how to use each story
- Orthography for each language
- Procedures in submitting a story
- Editorial procedures for stories submitted
- Uploading stories and categorizing them according to grade level
- Encouraging volunteers to illustrate each story
- Potential users are made aware they can freely download and print the text of the story and/or the text with drawings
- Providing English translation of some stories so that other language groups can adapt them for their own use
I thought of this project because I found out that no matter how elaborate our MLE training would be, teachers would end up asking for materials. The logical sequence should be to start producing MLE materials and then training teachers how to use them. The best claim we have for MLE is that it promotes early literacy skills and so we need materials. We can also upload in the same site a primer for each language group.
Typically, a project like this would require funding and the inclusion of experts. I thought that this collective effort would achieve the best results as a “bayanihan project” involving our kababayans, including those abroad.
Well, I told Ched and the Talaytayan group that I already have a ready-to-deploy website (see preliminary design above) with the domain name, http://www.multilingualphilippines.com, and requisite web hosting paid for. I, therefore, suggest that those interested souls start sending in the MLE materials/stories/articles to your talaytayan-mle Moderator <firstname.lastname@example.org> who should then do the job of shifting through them according to the above guidelines. I will help with uploading the selected materials in our Multilingual Philippines website.