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Educators Reclaim Filipino Indigenous Culture in CD-IFIC Workshop

Sixteen educators from 12 higher education institutions converged on the weekend of March 28-29, 2015 to discuss ways of integrating indigenous peoples (IP)’s knowledge and culture into the upcoming revised Liberal Arts and Education curriculum. Held at the Orchid Garden Suites in Manila, the workshop was part of the De La Salle University-Manila’s Social Development Research Center’s (SDRC) “Reclaiming Filipino Indigenous Cultures through Teaching and Learning” study funded by the United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia (UBCHEA).  Sharing their expertise in the area of indigenous peoples and culture were Atty. Grace Villanueva, Executive Director of the Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center, Inc.- Kasama sa Kalikasan Friends of the Earth Philippines, who spoke on The Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act of 1997 and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; DLSU professor Fr. Delfo Canceran, who provided a review on conducting qualitative research; Catanduanes State University professor Dr. Ramon Sarmiento, who shared his views on ways in which Filipino indigenous people use their knowledge to live sustainably; and University of Sto. Tomas professor Dr. Dennis Pulido, who gave pointers on curriculum development and module writing.

The workshop was highlighted by a site visit to the Aeta community of Villa Maria in Porac, Pampanga on the second day of the workshop. Participants were exposed to the IPs’ living conditions and were able to interview elders of the community, putting into context what they had learned the day before and gaining insights into how to teach indigenous culture.

The curriculum development for the integration of Filipino indigenous culture (CD-IFIC) workshop was facilitated by project director Dr. Hazel Biana of the Department of Philosophy and research associates Dr. Melvin Jabar of the Department of Behavioral Science and Dr. Homer Yabut of the Department of Psychology. Participants at the workshop are scheduled to complete their modules integrating indigenous knowledge and culture by the end of April. The participants represented DLSU-Dasmariñas, De La Salle Araneta University, DLSU Integrated School in Canlubang, the University of Santo Tomas, Central Luzon State University, Eastern Samar State University, Adamson University, the University of the East-Manila, Pamantasan ng Lugsod ng Pasig, Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Marikina, City University of Pasay, and St. Camillus Seminary.   






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