I don’t know if it is my internet connection or the WordPress website.

I have already typed a long intro-comment on this article, but when I click “Save and Continue Editing”, my comments disappeared. Gawdimolet!
During one of my Saturday day-off, when the epileptic NEPA went off in the afternoon, I found myself thingking about how I can train my kids to manage their allowances.

Flashback: I remember when i was young, (so much younger than today…), some of my classmates had a grand time selling sourball and chocolates during class break. They allowed cash or IOUs. One friend told me it was their one week allowance that they invested in the candies.  I thought of doing the same (copycat), but I felt shy peddling the sourballs, and so I ended up consuming my products.

Maybe those classmates of mine are now successful in their own businesses, considering the entrepreurial skills, borne out of necessity, they showed at early age. 

I also remembered the One-peso PNB passbook which my mother (a public school teacher) opened for us, in line with the Marcos’ government program of  encouraging/teaching Filipinos to save money, as popularize by the slogan “Mag-impok sa bangko..”

These days

I am thinking that I should teach my kids how to do business by doing what my childhood friends did in elementary — buy-and-sell. Only this time, it will not be sourballs but some cheap, child-friendly and trendy consumer products. I am sure my daughter will pick up the idea, but my son — well, just like me — then.

With this ITLA initiative, i think it is high time that DepEd should incorporate the top ten inititatives of these brilliant educators into the public school curricula. DepEd should seize all opportunities from foreign fundings to improve the quality of public education.

The winning lesson plan of Teacher Fedelyn is a brillliant way of training our youth into becoming business-minded, rather than plain consumer/spender.

Look, how many Indios own businesses or are big-names in business? Mostly it is the Chinese, Koreans, Lebanese, Indians, Spanish and Americans who owns the big business in the country. Why is it that? Because from house to schools, our children were never expose or taught about the basic of entrepreneurship and even the discipline of giving value to a hard-earned money. We are taught to spend, to become employees… 

Maybe one of our teachers would also come up with a lesson plan on basic financial and management accounting that elementary students (Grades 5 & 6) can comprehend.

In the end, the value of ITLA is not just in finding some brilliant initiatives from public school teachers, but in promoting these initiatives and incorporating it in public school curricula.

Kudos to the winners.

itla3.jpgMANDALUYONG CITY, Philippines–Fedelyn Gomez, a high school teacher at the Tomas Cabili National High School in Iligan City, recalled the days leading to the moment she received a coveted award for most innovative teachers in the country.”I cried because I almost did not make it to the contest,” she said, explaining that a blackout had affected the submission of some requirements.

A teacher for 12 years who is currently teaching Makabayan (Civics), Gomez was ecstatic when Microsoft Philippines officials called out her name from among the 10 finalists.

Her winning lesson plan taught students important concepts in entrepreneurship. “The Wonders of One’s Finger Tips” lesson plan required students to design a business plan for an animal production project. Their work was then published on the Web.

Gomez revealed that she missed the deadline for her graduate studies thesis, but was still thankful that she won the award.

Gomez’s winning lesson plan was unique in this year’s Innovative Teachers Leadership Awards (ITLA). Most of the finalists focused on science, math, and language subjects.

During her presentation to the judges, Gomez said she felt that she was not going to win the award. But it turned out that she was one of top three winners, along with Julius Hechanova, also a fellow teacher from Iligan City.

The third winner is Ma. Noemi Bagayaua, a five-year elementary teacher from Cembo Elementary School in Makati City who specializes in English.

itla2.jpgHechanova who just started teaching mathematics a month ago created a micro-lesson wherein students were asked to solve word problems in right triangle trigonometry. He used Microsoft’s Powerpoint to present word problems with animated illustrations to better explain concepts.

Bagayaua, on the other hand, developed a literature-based interactive lesson to enhance the reading comprehension of Grade 6 pupils.

All three teachers said they did not expect to win. But they also admit that their victory was indication that they were on to something that was good and right.

Despite the lack of computers in the schools where the winning teachers are teaching, they still believe technology has provided them more tools to make lessons interesting.

“Also we don’t cough a lot because we’re no longer using chalk [when teaching],” quipped Hechanova.

Now on its fourth year, the ITLA gives recognition to teachers who develop ways to integrate information and communications technology in teaching and learning.

These teachers come from top 30 school division identified by Microsoft Philippines in its Potensyal program, which is also an initiative to identify the top school divisions in the country.

wit_winner.jpgParticipants in the ITLA are required to submit their digital portfolio through the Partners in Learning (PIL) online community, also of Microsoft. PIL is a global initiative for education.

All three top winners will go on to join the Microsoft Regional Innovative Teachers Conference in Vietnam in April.