Film Screenings / Lectures/Workshops

Usapan 1: Education/Edukasyon

UBC Philippine Studies Series
and the Liu Institute for Global Issues
invite you to

USAPAN “Education/Edukasyon”: What are we teaching our children?

A film screening, a lecture by UP professor Lorina Calingasan, and 2012 Usapan planning session.



1. Screening of Sablay (2008, 5 min 30 sec, documentary) by Dada Docot

Synopsis: As a verb, the Filipino word “sablay” means “to hang”. “Sablay”, in the context of the University of the Philippines, refers to the sash usually worn during graduation ceremonies as a symbol of academic excellence. A homophone, the word “sablay” can also mean “blunder,” “error”, or “mistake.” Playing with the duality of the word, the short film discusses what studying at the Philippines’ supposedly most elite and most advanced institution of learning actually means. What promises does the university offer its students, and what realities do the graduates face when they complete this so-called “red carpet to a better life” education? The film won the Grand Prize at the University of the Philippines’ Centennial Anniversary Digital Filmmaking Competition.

Dada Docot is a PhD student in Anthropology at UBC.


2. Presentation: Lorina Calingasan (15 minutes)

In the Philippines, social studies teachers or generally, teachers in basic education implement a curriculum produced by the government. Over a period of time, the curriculum gets to be revised according to certain demands, goals and concerns. While changes in basic education curriculum are periodic, it is also evident that some of its goals and expectations remain elusive and mistakes are somehow committed repeatedly.

This study will describe the history of revisions in the Social Studies curriculum from the time it was implemented as a subject in 1902, and until 2010 when the Department of Education did its latest revision. It will show how the subject, initially offered as History, Geography and Civics, transforms to Social Studies, then to Hekasi, integrated geography, history and civics, and to Makabayan, a conglomeration of Social Studies, Home Economics, Music, Art, PE and Values Education. Forces behind the revisions will also be discussed.

For this presentation, the paper will focus on how the goal of critical and creative thinking though explicitly articulated as a curriculum goal remain elusive, or how it gets (in)adequately translated in the 1997, 2002 and 2010 learning competencies. Moreover, the curriculum revisions done in 1997 Philippine Elementary Schools Learning Competencies (PESLCs), 2002 Basic Education Curriculum (BEC), and 2010 Revised/Revitalized Basic Education Curriculum (RBEC) are hardly distinguishable.

Lorina Calingasan teaches Social Studies in the College of Education, University of the Philippines (UP) in Diliman. She is currently doing her dissertation on the history of Social Studies curriculum in the Philippines under the Curriculum Studies department at the UP College of Education. Convinced that history/historical thinking skills ought to occupy a substantial space in the elementary and high school social studies curriculum, she came to UBC Center for the Study of Historical Consciousness.

Additonal Reading: Righting History: Mindanao portrayed as war zone in children’s textbooks by Carolyn O. Arguillas (MindaNews)


3. Q&A – 15 mins

4. USAPAN Planning – 20 mins

5. Christmas PartyPotluck or UBC Kababayan Christmas Party

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