Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Top Ten Things Inside A Teacher's Christmas Wish List

If wishes can be granted to make a teacher happy this Christmas season, a Teacher's Wish List will look something like the list below.

1. Books, books and more books!

Books for Less has its Grandest Book Sale this Christmas season 2010 from December 1 to 30, 8am to 5 pm. Enjoy up to 70% discount and book prices as low as P5.00

I remember a time when my co-teachers and I will just go book-hunting for classic stories and forgotten and unappreciated novels and books. Ah, memories. Well, some of the books my co-teachers mentioned they would like to receive were Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, books on classical literature, juvenile fiction, children's literature, Filipiniana books, books by a nobel prize winner, autobiographies, best-sellers and highly recommended pop literature.

To add a twist to this book giving, why not give a book that you actually love to your teacher. It might actually inspire her or him to use it as one of your lessons in class.

2. A spa - there is nothing like a good relaxing spa to remove those aches and pains brought by standing for a long time and missing that restroom break several times a day because teacher is in the middle of a class or just attending to his/her students' needs.

Zenyu ecospa is the only negative ion spa in the country.
1. Dr.Fish spa - full body Jacuzzi (P300) free when you get a hotbed or massage.
2. Hot bed therapy - Negative ion technology from Ecoparadise Japan. BE Well with good clean air molecules. A new dimensi...on in wellness now here in the country. (P300)
3. Massage - Professional massage service in the first ecospa/negative ion spa in the country. (P600)

Orange Home Spa is offering a buy 5 plus 1 free Gift certificate package. Each GC is worth P300 pesos. This is a perfect gift idea since Orange Home Spa "provides the best therapeutic and relaxing massage service at the convenience of its client’s home"

3. Arts and crafts materials; colored pens, pencils, cute notepads, a set of pencils, erasers, stationery, sharpener and oh and I've always wanted those assemble-it-yourself shelf where I can keep my folders, files and other documents. Something to help achieve our New Year's resolution of having an organized and clutter-free work space.

4. A big bag or knapsack - They say fellow teachers know their kind by just looking at the bag that person is using. If its too big and it looks like it contains everything and anything enough to say that you can actually join the next Survivor show then most probably that person is a teacher. I guess I can compare teachers to turtles who just cant leave their houses behind.

Well, if you haven't found that bag you can always go to the upcoming The Big Outlet Sale 2010. And again if your fast enough to act on this, Trip or Treats is giving away FREE tickets to the event if you join her contest.


5. coffee/tea - this is supplies good for the next year and teacher just wants to prepare.

6. A lovelife starting with good health which is very much connected to a weightloss program

Yes your teachers are humans too and you know who is their number one love in their lives? Most of the time its their students. So a compliment here and there will actually go a long way to make your teacher's heart melt. One teacher wishes for a collection of written notes from her students. How sweet can that be!

TRA is not just a weight loss program - it is a 4-week Fitness Detox Program.
Aside from Losing Pounds Naturally, you will also experience: More Energy
Better Sleep; Better Digestion and Bowel Movement. No Starving. No Exercise Required. NO REBOUND. Guaranteed in 4 weeks. Lower Bad Stuff (Cholesterol, Blood Pressure, Blood Sugar, SGPT, Uric Acid, Triglycerides, etc.) Look and Feel Younger!
Guaranteed in 4 weeks. PLUS you get FREE unlimited access to a Personal TRA coach
throughout the 4 weeks.

7. Sports equipment - May it be a basketball, soccer shoes, running shoes, something to expedite achieving wishlist number 6.

8. 2011 Planner or Journal

A fellow teacher of mine was plugging this planner in his FB page. It's called ""Relaks, Puso Lang Yan Malayo Sa Bituka" PLANNER 2011" by Witty Will Save The World, Co. It's so funny. Just looking at this journal will surely put a smile on anybody who is reading it. The best thing about this is that it is truly "Gawang Pinoy". To check out their site you may visit


9. Seminars - Learning is a lifelong process and we teachers know that. So for us to keep improving our skill and continue to grow our knowledge to teach our students better, we also do not stop educating ourselves.

PSI's comprehensive approach to personal and professional success. It is based on the fundamental principle that each individual possesses unlimited, untapped potential. Unlocking this allows a person to achieve greater results and abundance.

It is an educational program that assimilates learning through experience. It is an experiential and values based seminar (values formation) that deals with the 4 aspect of man (physical, emotional, mental and spiritual). It is a personal development and values reinforcement program designed to assist you to learn and experience as much as possible in a short period of time and yet, remember the skills and your values long after the seminar, even if you can't use them everyday. In the class we examine self-limiting beliefs that act as barriers between us and our goals and which hinder us from achieving what we most want in life. It provides the opportunity for us to be aware of these beliefs as well as experience new ways of overcoming them.

10. And the most requested wish is no other than - A Vacation!!!

Oh yes, teachers are extra lively and energetic this month because just like kids they are anticipating also the next 25 days. I actually even saw a post where a countdown has begun for this teacher in his FB wall. lol.

Talking about vacations, if sky is the limit one teacher dreams for a trip to Vietnam, one to Hong Kong or a trip to beautiful spots here in the Philippines like Cagayan De Oro, Corregidor and Batanes. But oh well we know it is too extravagant to receive this kind of gift for a teacher so its a good thing that one can still enjoy the beauty of the Philippines by visiting Manila Ocean Park especially now that they have the P99 Musical Fountain Show starting December 1 upto January 16, 2011. The best thing about this promo is that you can now get a ticket online via credit card or request for an sms verification to avail of the promo and pay it at Acquatica booths.

Another way to give teachers a vacation for free is to earn them tickets from a contest. You can win tickets for 4 different attractions at Manila Ocean Park. Just go to the link below to grab this opportunity.



Do you think there's more to add in our Teacher's Christmas Wish List? Post your ideas in the comments box, I'd love to hear your thoughts on what's inside your Teacher's Christmas Wish list.

P 99 MUSICAL FOUNTAIN PROMO at ACQUATICA starting December 1, 2010

Good News Everyone!

Hey Guys, Manila Ocean Park and Acquatica are bringing back their P99 Musical Fountain Show Promo starting today December 1, 2010. This time there are more good news: First, there are two ways you can reserve/buy your tickets. For the complete details, read the information sent to me below. The instructions for the promo mechanics is also listed in the photo I attached in this blog.

Spending time with your family members this Christmas need not to be too expensive. The most important thing is to have a breather from work, reflect on what matters most in your life and enjoy every moment you have loving and being loved with the people closest to your heart.


P 99 MUSICAL FOUNTAIN PROMO is back in time for the HOLIDAY Festivities!

But this time around, we have a choice of either to PAY ONLINE after registration



Previous registrants or members can again avail the P 99 Promo!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Story of Appreciation: A Parent Must Read

This story of appreciation is sent to me via a forwarded e-mail. This story of appreciation is one of those inspiring stories that keeps me grounded as a parent. This story of appreciation can also be a story of inspiration or even a wake-up to parents why we should avoid being helicopter parents or in layman's terms uberly "protective" parents.

For parents.worth reading...

One young academically excellent person went to apply for a managerial position in a big company.

He passed the first interview; the director did the last interview, made the last decision.

The director discovered from the CV that the youth's academic achievements were excellent all the way, from the secondary school until the postgraduate research, never had a year when he did not score.

The director asked, "Did you obtain any scholarships in school?" the youth answered "none".

The director asked, " Was it your father who paid for your school fees?"

The youth answered, "My father passed away when I was one year old, it was my mother who paid for my school fees.

The director asked, "Where did your mother work?" The youth answered, "My
mother worked as clothes cleaner. The director requested the youth to show his hands. The youth showed a pair of hands that were smooth and perfect.

The director asked, "Have you ever helped your mother wash the clothes before?" The youth answered, "Never, my mother always wanted me to study and read more books. Furthermore, my mother can wash clothes faster than me.

The director said, "I have a request. When you go back today, go and clean your mother's hands, and then see me tomorrow morning.

The youth felt that his chance of landing the job was high. When he went back, he happily requested his mother to let him clean her hands. His mother felt strange, happy but with mixed feelings, she showed her hands to the kid.

The youth cleaned his mother's hands slowly. His tear fell as he did that. It was the first time he noticed that his mother's hands were so wrinkled, and there were so many bruises in her hands. Some bruises were so painful that his mother shivered when they were cleaned with water.

This was the first time the youth realized that it was this pair of hands that washed the clothes everyday to enable him to pay the school fee. The bruises in the mother's hands were the price that the mother had to pay for his graduation, academic excellence and his future.

After finishing the cleaning of his mother hands, the youth quietly washed all the remaining clothes for his mother.

That night, mother and son talked for a very long time.

Next morning, the youth went to the director's office.

The Director noticed the tears in the youth's eyes, asked: "Can you tell me
what have you done and learned yesterday in your house?"

The youth answered, " I cleaned my mother's hand, and also finished cleaning all the remaining clothes'

The Director asked, "please tell me your feelings."

The youth said, Number 1, I know now what is appreciation. Without my mother, there would not the successful me today. Number 2, by working together and helping my mother, only I now realize how difficult and tough it is to get something done. Number 3, I have come to appreciate the importance and value of family relationship.

The director said, " This is what I am looking for to be my manager. I want to recruit a person who can appreciate the help of others, a person who knows the sufferings of others to get things done, and a person who would not put money as his only goal in life. You are hired.

Later on, this young person worked very hard, and received the respect of his subordinates. Every employee worked diligently and as a team. The company's performance improved tremendously.

A child, who has been protected and habitually given whatever he wanted, would develop "entitlement mentality" and would always put himself first. He would be ignorant of his parent's efforts. When he starts work, he assumes that every person must listen to him, and when he becomes a manager, he would never know the sufferings of his employees and would always blame others. For this kind of people, who may be good academically, may be successful for a while, but eventually would not feel sense of achievement. He will grumble and be full of hatred and fight for more. If we are this kind of protective parents, are we really showing love or are we destroying the kid instead?*

You can let your kid live in a big house, eat a good meal, learn piano, watch a big screen TV. But when you are cutting grass, please let them experience it. After a meal, let them wash their plates and bowls together with their brothers and sisters. It is not because you do not have money to hire a maid, but it is because you want to love them in a right way. You want them to understand, no matter how rich their parents are, one day their hair will grow gray, same as the mother of that young person. The most important thing is your kid learns how to appreciate the effort and experience the difficulty and learns the ability to work with others to get things done.

You would have forwarded many mails to many and many of them would have black mailed you too...but try and forward this story to as many as possible...this may change somebody's fate... Don't you think so......

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Kyle Lograsso: the 5-year old Golf prodigy

Kyle Lograsso is a 5-year old Golf prodigy.

According to Yahoo videos where this clip was obtained Kyle Lograsso's was described as, "Kyle Lograsso is a 5 year old golf prodigy. And to think he started playing at the age of 2!"

Yes folks this kid learned how to play golf at age 2 and the best part of the story was that he learned to play golf while watching maybe an infomercial on tv just one time according to Kyle Lograsso's dad.

Thomas D. Willhite said that children absorbs about 50% from ages 1 to 4 years old. But this story is more than just an incredible absorption rate for kids. To give light to what I mean, let's look at the rest of the description for Kyle Lograsso's video which goes this way: "Watch this story about a loving family who overcame a great many problems. Be warned though, keep a box of tissues close at hand."

Below is the video of Kyle Lograsso, the 5-year old golf prodigy. As the description goes, you may want to keep a box of tissue handy (just in case).

When I watched Kyle Lograsso's video, I thought I was just watching a golf prodigy. Amazing as it is but I was proven wrong! Kyle Lograsso's story is not just about being a golf prodigy. Though that in itself is already a perfect story for my post on special education since it talks about gifted children. When I say gifted children here, I will be working on Howard Gardner's definition of gifted as per his theory of multiple intelligence. Just a short recap, there are several intelligences according to Howard Gardner's theory which includes Spatial, Linguistic, Logical-mathematical, Bodily-kinesthetic, Musical, Interpersonal, Intrapersonal, Naturalistic and Existential intelligence.

The intelligence Kyle Lograsso is exhibiting can be found under the bodily-kinesthetic area.

However, there is indeed more to the story of Kyle Lograsso! More than meets the eye (pun intended).

When we hear the term "special education" we usually think that it is only for disabled or that the student has to have special needs. It is quite disturbing that a lot of people have long-standing programs about special education which makes them fail to realize that having special needs does not equate to being disabled. Gifted children have special needs too or that being gifted requires special education as well.

On the other hand, what if the child is gifted and at the same time has a disability. As the case of Kyle Lograsso, does this mean he requires special "special education"? I think not. When Kyle Lograsso's parents found out that he had cancer in both of his eyes, they didn't say "Oh no! What will happen now to our prodigy golfer. It's the end of his bright future" No siree! That thought was not even entertained. Because of Kyle Lograsso's mom's early intervention, she noticed that the white mark in his son's eye was something that needs an expert's opinion. And true enough, the white mark was a malignant tumor and the Lograsso family were able to address Kyle Lograsso's cancer. The best thing Kyle Lograsso's family gave him was to show him a picture of him playing golf the moment he opened his eye after his operation. It was as if the parents were saying that this is the vision of what Kyle Lograsso will become.

I think that that incident in the hospital where Kyle Lograsso was shown a picture of him playing golf is one of the episodes that could have made what Kyle Lograsso is now. His parents were persistent and optimistic so instead of cowering down they gave Kyle Lograsso the vision of future. Yes he lost an eye in the process and that he underwent cancer treatments that will make adults hate the world but that was not true for this boy. The incident affected only Kyle Lagrosso's depth perception but Kyle Lograsso's vision of becoming a great golfer someday has never become deeper.

Kyle Lograsso is one of those boys I look forward to see grow and become the world's most successful golfer.

To find out more about Kyle Lograsso, please read the article written by Matty G. for http://www.golfdigest.com

Kyle Lograsso Is Still Fighting The Good Fight:Golfdigest.com

Photograph of Kyle Lograsso taken from http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-courses/blogs/wheres-matty-g/2010/08/kyle-lograsso-8-is-still-fight.html

Monday, November 22, 2010


Last November 21, 2010, we went to CCP to get our tickets for the play DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN) for the 10am show. We were entertained by Ms. Lorelei Celestino from Tanghalang Pilipino.

The tickets for DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN) are priced as P300 for students, P450 for senior citizens and P600 for regular guests. The programme for DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN) costs P50 which for me is just right given the quality of the paper used (gray paper). It is however, compensated with the colorful covering.

The play DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN) started on time and it was the first time for us to experience watching on top of the stage of CCP's Aurelio Tolentino (Little Theater) . The arrangement of the seats is adequate since there were not too many guests. Unfortunately, taking pictures inside the CCP theater is not allowed, hence, I cannot show you the exact stage arrangement.

My child's favorite actor in the play is Miss Nina Angela Rumbines who plays the role of Mariang Sinukuan. The reason my child liked her character was because she really showed that Mariang Sinukuan was a good judge. What my child liked most about the play was that the story was funny because of the different animal characters. On the other hand, what my child did not like the most was the temper of the fly which was portrayed well by the actor. Overall, my child says that the play was enjoyable.

I prefer to bring kids to children plays that showcase the beauty of the Filipino language. However, the play is very contemporary as the language used is Taglish and even "pop" words such as "stir" were heard. I personally did not like it but the kids were responding to the language used and I think that is what matters most especially when your building awareness and appreciation for Filipino children plays. However, I also believe there are plays I would not prefer to be heard in Taglish such as Noli Me Tangere or El Filibusterismo. Then again I am not sure since I have not seen one but for now that would be my preference. Still, DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN) was able to fuse the appreciation of Filipino children plays with a timeless tale in the Filipino literature.

There were foreigners in the play and they seem to enjoy the play as well as they were participating. It was not difficult to understand the play since it uses contemporary Filipino language which is a mixture of Filipino and English or what we call Taglish. In addition, it is very interactive and the actors would require the audience to make animal sounds together with them. In the end, I would recommend to watch DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN) in your repertoire of Filipino children plays to watch since it can capture audience across all ages.

My personal favorite line from this children play is from the main theme song which goes like this:

Dugtong Dugtong ang Buhay, Dugtong Dugtong ang buhay, Bawat isa'y magkakaugnay
Dugtong Dugtong ang Buhay, Dugtong Dugtong ang buhay, ang ginawa sa kanya may epekto ngayon"
Dugtong Dugtong ang Buhay, Dugtong Dugtong ang buhay, Bawat isa'y magkakaugnay

The DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN) play was staged by Tanghalang Pilipino or TP. According to the material of Tanghalang Pilipino sent to me, the company's profile is as follows:

TANGHALANG PILIPINO was founded in 1987 as the resident theater company of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP). It aims to promote Philippine theater that is rooted in centuries-old Filipino culture and history while being responsive to evolving contemporary society.

Tanghalang Pilipino is unique among other theater groups in the Philippines as it maintains a core of actors whose full-time training in acting is subsidized by the company. Known as the Tanghalang Pilipino Actors Company, these actors are tapped for the company’s season repertoire and special performances. The actors who have graduated from the Actors Company now comprise the most sought-after stable of talents in television, cinema and commercial advertising.

Tanghalang Pilipino maintains the highest standards in artistic discipline, technical skill and professional conduct. It presents an annual season of plays at the CCP consisting of original Filipino works, both classic and contemporary, as well as translations and adaptations of theater materials from Asia and other parts of the globe. It also conducts regular theater education and training programs in acting, directing, playwriting and production management. These programs are open to students, non-professional theater enthusiasts, corporate clients and professional theater practitioners. In addition to honing skills for onstage performance, Tanghalang Pilipino also commits itself to the development of an active audience for Filipino theater through its nurture of the native language as its primary medium for its productions and by bringing its performances to venues outside its home at the CCP -- including non-traditional performance spaces – to various parts of the country and overseas, especially locations with large Filipino communities.

TP has successfully presented more than 200 full productions within 24 seasons while generating one of the best audience attendance records among CCP’s resident companies. Its earliest repertoire was guided by the vision of Nonon Padilla, its founding Artistic Director (1987-2002), and sustained by Herbert Go (2002-2006), and Dennis Marasigan (2006-2008). Tanghalang Pilipino is currently on its 25th Theater Season under the artistic direction of Fernando Josef.

To find out about the plays lined up for the 24th and 25th season of of Tanghalang Pilipino, you may contact them at:


2/F PDC Building, Cultural Center of the Philippines Complex

Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City

Metro Manila, Philippines

Telephone: (02) 832-1125, locals 1620 & 1621

Telefax: 832-3661

e-maill: ccptanghalan@yahoo.com

website: www.tanghalangpilipino.com

TO RECEIVE UPDATES, join Tanghalang Pilipino's FREE e-mail mailing list!

Simply send a blank e-mail to:


You may also contact Tanghalang Pilipino, for

• Student, Senior Citizen and Group Discounts

• Ticket Reservation and Show Booking


• Sponsoring of and Advertising in a show or season

• Buying a show as your ORGANIZATION’s FUNDRAISER

• Special TOURING Shows

• WORKSHOPS and OJT Programs

• How to volunteer and/or donate

• Upcoming AUDITIONS

Till the next Tanghalang Pilipino children play!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

16 Historical Photos - Glimpses of the World and Mankind in its Most Vulnerable State: A Review

This morning I was doing my routine of checking my mails wishing for some great news I received in the mail and true enough there are great news.

One is about a grandiose event at Hotel H2O's Liquid Lounge and Pool which really made me excited and left me looking forward to December. I must say I have to stop myself talking about Liquid Lounge and Pool if I want to keep the details a surprise but I'm just really excited for Liquid Lounge and Pool! To know more about Liquid Lounge and Pool, check out http://iaadamlim.blogspot.com/2010/10/hotel-h20-liquid-pool-and-lounge.html

Another great news I received is a letter from a CCP representative about the tickets I have been trying to get for the play DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN. For more details, check out my post about the play http://specialeducationphilippines.blogspot.com/2010/10/tanghalang-pilipino-presents-dugtong.html. Remember the last day of DUGTONG DUGTONG NA SUMBONG (ANG HUKUMAN NI SINUKUAN is this Sunday November 21, 2010, 3pm show.

And the last e-mail I read before I go back to my thesis writing was actually coincidental. I opened this e-mail because I want to lessen the unopened e-mails I already have in my inbox. I scrolled down the attachments and one captured my interest, the title says 16 Pictures that Captured the World. Perhaps somebody might think its just another one of those beautiful scenery compilations which you can use as a wallpaper in the computer. I sure was wrong about it because for me these 16 historical photos were glimpses of the World and Mankind in its most vulnerable state. These 16 Historical Photos are more than just pictures for me because I have a ton of things I have to do but look what at what I'm doing now. I'm writing this blog! I guess this really shows my essence: writing about something as moving as this is automatic for me. In my mind, I'm thinking, I've got to share this 16 historical photos. Not sharing this 16 historical photos means depriving the world of information or even an emotion that might inspire them to do something different today.

I've been trying to locate the author or owner of the 16 historical photos Powerpoint presentation in the Internet but due to time restriction I was only able to find one site that linked another site which shows these 16 historical photos. The link was provided by Gary in a comment he posted at http://biiwii.blogspot.com/2010/11/16-historical-photos.html which will bring you to another site http://www.biiwii.com/analysis.htm. At the time this blog is written, the link for 16 Historical Photos can be found in between two articles as shown below. When I clicked the link, I saw the same Powerpoint presentation forwarded to me. Hence, again I cannot mention the name of the author or owner. So for this reason, I would have to give the credit to http://www.blogger.com/www.biwii.blogspot.com for making 16 Historical Photos available to the public.

Media Spins Illusion of Hope & Change Rick Ackerman 11.12.10

16 Historical Photos 11.12.10 ms powerpoint - ot... perspective

Matt Taibbi Takes FraudClosure Mainstream Zero Hedge 11.12.10

To say something about the source, let's ask what is http://www.blogger.com/www.biwii.blogspot.com. According to the website "biiwii" stands for "but it is what it is" which is a financial market realities with a supporting technical analysis website. Biwii is a technical analysis site, a macroeconomic & fundamental opinion site and a reality focused financial resource. Biiwii.com is Not a stock promotion site, a bull market or a bear market site or conspiracy theory site. Biiwii.com - It is what it is.

So how come,
Biiwii.com has a post on 16 Historical Photos? Well it is what it is...

Again to give credit to the site, I urge you to visit
Biiwii.com and get the powerpoint from there to see 16 Historical Photos. The pictures that I will show here are those pictures I got from that touched me tremendously. I also leave it up to you to read the original description of the photo in the 16 Historical Photos powerpoint presentation. Since it can be downloaded for free, I suggest you save 16 Historical Photos. And anytime you feel down, just look at these 16 Historical Photos and remember what these 16 Historical Photos meant.


This is the first time I found out her name and I never thought that it will be revealed to me in a Powerpoint named 16 Historical Photos and that I will have a chance to write about her. Thanks to www.blogger.com and to my blogging mentor, Jomar Hilario I have this chance.

Her name is Gharbat Gula. It took 17 years for photographer Steve McCurry to find out the name behind those seething green eyes. I remember when I saw this historical photo on a Reader's Digest magazine, I cut it out and placed it in my folder of "amazing pictures" when I was still young. I looked at this girl and I said "Oh my, if only I had those eyes!" but I know deep inside me no one will really see those eyes for the precious gems that they are because she is Muslim girl in a refugee camp. Gharbat Gula is from Afghanistan.

The next historical photo was taken in 1972. As you can see in the picture there is a naked girl crying. Why is she naked? Because her clothes burned and she is running away from a bombing. She is running for her life, scared and with God knows severe burnt wounds. Despite the odds, Pham Thi Kim Phuc fights for her life and wants to survive. I just remembered the news about a Japanese guy who committed suicide and publishing his death online in live videostreaming just a few weeks ago.What could have happened to him for this guy to lose hope surviving in this world when
Pham Thi Kim Phuc has horror spelled in her face and now etched in her body. To find out the rest of the story on what happened to Pham Thi Kim Phuc after this frightful day, please watch the powerpoint from www.biiwii.com.

This is for me a picture of a child who never gives up hope. Omayra Sanchez, is the name of this Colombian girl who was stuck in the mud you see in this historical photo for three days. She was stuck there up to the last moment of her life. But look at those eyes, those hopeful eyes hoping that somebody might still be able to save her. As a teacher I've seen those eyes before. Its a pleading look "Please don't leave me". There is sadness also behind that gaze but what struck me most were her hands. They were white and bloated as if life from her is slowly leaving its vessel. She is there like a candle with a soft glow but all those around cant do anything but to see her fade away.

I saw this photo in a National Geographic magazine and I remembered the first thing I did was close the magazine right away. I told myself that I must have imagined something wrong because that picture couldn't be really happening. So I dared open the magazine again and I was really horrified to know that I was right in what I saw. At that time, I asked the people around me if the child in the photo survived but I couldn't find the information I desperately wanted to hear that time. Now back in college in some random conversation I was told that the photographer of this historical photo which I now know as Kevin Carter committed suicide. Steve McCurry was very lucky to find Gharbat Gula after 17 years as for this Sudanese child in the photo below, sadly, nobody will know her name or her face. The world never had a chance to make her smile. We only saw her moments of despair and destitution.

The last historical photo may not be as bothersome as the rest of the pictures of the children above. But the story behind the picture is most bothersome for me. This is what will happen if we live life not caring. This photo reminds me of a Yahoo News I just read yesterday on how college students reacted when a speaker collapsed right in front of them. Instead of helping the man, the first reaction of the students was to tweet or update their status with what they saw. They documented the event as if what was in front of them was a television! They were so near yet so far from reality.

So what is the point of this blogpost? Am I ranting? Blaming? Pointing fingers? Putting myself on a pedestal? Oh I am such a better person than you...


as the source of these 16 Historical Photos says...

"it is what it is"

I think that says it all.

"it is what it is"

but does the story ends there?

Definitely no!

And this is where the lesson of PSI comes to my mind - People Synergistically Involved


We are all connected. So this blog does not aim for us to be hopeless. Look at your child when you get home from work today. Look at your students when you tell them a story. Look at them play and laugh. Do you see hopelessness there? What I see in them is the future. A successful one.

The only question is, what are you doing to make sure the next generation would be successful?

Change starts within you.

As Jack Canfield said in his program Success Principles, "You will always get what you've always gotten if you've always done what you've always did.

Let's all move forward. Today is a different day.

The powerpoint presentation 16 Historical Photos can be downloaded from http://www.biiwii.com/analysis.htm.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween Night at the Museum: A Review and so much more!

The last day of the month of October was very busy for us as a family. We admit that we really encouraged our child to join the Halloween Night at the Museum because we find it as an avenue for our child to exercise different skills. Personally, it is also the very few times Mommy can dress up our child without our child complaining.

We arrived at Manila Ocean Park early to register for the Halloween Night at the Museum. After getting a ticket at Zoocology for P150, we proceeded to the restroom found at Manila Ocean Park's Concourse area to change to our costume. Both mother and child wore a Halloween costume in the spirit of Halloween Night at the Museum. Based from the billboards we saw about Halloween Night at the Museum, the event will start at 3pm. Thirty minutes past 3 pm, there were only a handful of kids in the Concourse area. Finally, about 15 minutes before 4 pm, the Halloween Night at the Museum formally started. The host for the event is Ms. Mary of Manila Times.

When Halloween Night at the Museum started there were only a number of kids who were present. I can say this because the same kids joined every contest.

By the fourth game more kids have arrived. When it was time for the kids to go Trick or Treat around Manila Ocean Park and its stores, the kids participating for
Halloween Night at the Museum had to be divided into three groups because there were too many kids to go around just as one group.

In my opinion if your child has special needs, it will be alright to bring your child to this kind of event. Of course, your judgment of the readiness of your child, safety and security will also affect your final decision. However, in my case, we are constantly looking for different avenues where our child can practice improving his social skills. Exposing him in events where he will have lots of opportunities to meet new people, new kids and hopefully build new friendships is our primary goal. After the Halloween Night at the Museum, our child was invited to attend a birthday party. It was also his first time to go in a party without his mother so its another opportunity for him to practice being independent and being friendly.

When my child was really small (so small that he needs to be carried or placed in a stroller) we only need to go to one Trick or Treat event in a subdivision. After that Trick or Treat we already had to give away most of the candies our child received because our child could not eat most of them anyway. As years went by, we would go to two to three Trick or Treat parties. This was the time he loved to dance and show off his costume especially if its his favorite character like Ben Ten, Ninja and so on...

Now that our child is a lot bigger I noticed that our child is getting a little bit shy to show off in front of the stage and he is even conscious of the little girls and little boys looking at him. We have been asked questions like "Why are they looking at me mom? Do I look ok?" or comments like "I don't want to go in front of the stage mom. It's embarrassing." My first reaction was "Is there something wrong with my son's self-concept that he feels very conscious already?" or am I just imagining things again?

To make a better judgment I reviewed the stages of development, Erik Erikson and other Special Education philosophers and accounts of parents who also has children with Special Needs. Finally, I noted that during the program our child was not that focused anymore in the treats or the contests and attractions. Our child was more focused in making friends and talking to them. The stories were not just about what our child did or likes and dislikes. It now included what our child and other kids did, their conversations, and their jokes. I guess to sum it all up one parent told me "Wow, nagbibinata na ang anak mo". And until now I can hear that sentence echoing in my ears as if I am in a Twilight zone.

Are we happy? scared? worried? excited? We (the parents) are not really sure yet what we feel (mostly mommy). However, as parents, we have always given our child several opportunities to grow his social skills because we know that this is an aspect of our child's life that is the most challenging due to impulsivity and inattention. Now that our child is finally exercising the skills needed to build relationships and maintain them, we get this feeling "So it does work. It really works. Experiential learning really works and just by exposing our child to several experiences that will allow our child to grow in a multi-dimensional manner we target not just one skill but several and equally important skills of our child's life.

As part of the vision and mission of this blog, Special Education does not stop in the classroom or inside the school. Special Education or Education for that matter happens when the child is ready. When the child with special needs is ready, the special education teacher will always come. The special education teacher does not even have to be a person. It can be an experience, an event, or a group of people.

As a Special Education teacher myself I am more than amazed to realize that the classroom of life really has no borders. We just have to be creative and consistent to our goals. The lesson plan now is more than just a piece of paper, the curriculum is not just extrinsic but intrinsic. And the special education teacher is not always a person. Most importantly the SPED lesson runs not just for 45 minutes but for LIFE.

The Halloween Night at the Museum
had other exciting activities in store for kids such as coloring activities where the best works were awarded a prize by Sterling.

There was also an interactive storytelling activity where guests were randomly picked to actively participate in the storytelling.

Finally, loot bags were distributed and sponsored by Sterling and Hygienix.

Overall, I like the pace of Halloween Night at the Museum event. The length of each activity was just right to keep the kids entertained and on their seat. I also liked the host Ms. Mary because she was really great with kids. I love the storytelling portion because it promotes Filipino literature and love for reading.

I hope next year that the event will start on time to also encourage parents to be on time. It will be more fun if there will be more stores who will join in giving treats to kids. I particularly like one facilitator, Kuya Shane, who joined the kids in the Trick or Treat because he encouraged kids to greet every store they visited. The kids greeted in unison "Happy Halloween" when they arrived and "Thank you po" after they received their candies. I find the repetitive action a very good positive reinforcement.

So there you go, till next year's
Halloween Night at the Museum.