Saturday, January 28, 2012

Keeping An Eye on K+12

Starting with the appointment of De La Salle University's Bro. Armin Luistro as Secretary of Education, the Aquino administration has committed both political capital and vast budgetary resources to the K+12 Basic Education Program.

Integral to K+12 is the introduction and adoption of a largely new K+12 Basic Education Curriculum which the department has to sell to Congress in order to get the requisite multiyear legislative commitment of funding and support as the Department undertakes a most ambitious expansion program from the present ten year basic education cycle to the global standard thirteen year K+12 program.

The Deped affords a glimpse at its upcoming new K+12 Curriculum in this Press Release.
Enjoyable, easily understood lessons using the language spoken at home, less contact time, and interactive.

These are just some of the features of the new curriculum for Grade 1 and first year high school students that the Department of Education will implement starting June 2012 under the K to 12 basic education reform program.

Education Secretary Br. Armin A. Luistro FSC said the new curriculum is centered more on the students rather on the traditional way of teaching which is focused on the teacher. “We are making it a real learning experience for the students, meaning, it will be less on memorization but more encouraging of critical thinking,” he added.

It helps that the new K to 12 curriculum will implement the mother tongue-based multi- lingual education (MTB-MLE) in studying lessons from Kinder up to Grade 3. Studies have shown that students learn better when the language used at home is the same language used in discussing class lessons. DepEd is already piloting MTB-MLE in various schools nationwide using eight major regional dialects.
I'm all for those "enjoyable, easily understood lessons" (especially in algebra and high school chemistry). I'm also full of hope and some apprehension over the "Mother tongue-based multi-lingual education" to be used in Kindergarten to Grade 3. I wonder how this helps in the declared purpose of the K+12 Curriculum to facilitate the beginning of formal Science subject study at Grade 3.

When the Department first removed the Health and Science Subject from the Basic Education Curriculum in Grades One and Two, on of several reasons advanced was this. Many students at Grade 1 & 2 are supposedly unprepared to absorb Science Lessons because of lack of English proficiency. So they suggested that formal Science Subject start at Grade 3 with Science "integrated" with the English Subject. But after ten years, do the outcomes justify continuing the policy of a truncated science curriculum? In my opinion, the answer is NO!  

1 comment:

Angel C. de Dios said...

Hello Dean:

I hope you would take time to visit my blog,

This is a compilation of comments on DepEd's K+12. I believe there is too much focus on the additional two years when, in fact, the major changes that will occur now are in the current 10-year curriculum. And these changes are not founded on solid data and may prove to be harmful to the present educational system. Thanks, in advance.

-Angel de Dios