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Angel Locsin's Name In A Learning Module Is A Lesson About What NOT To Teach Kids
PHOTO BY Jerome Ascano and Facebook/Angel Locsin
  • UPDATE: DepEd has issued an apology and Angel Locsin has also released her statement. Read it here.  

    Seeing Angel Locsin's name in the headlines isn't new, but we couldn't ignore one because it's related to kids' education.

    Yesterday, November 13, 2020, a news item on PEP.ph reported that a public school teacher in Occidental Mindoro used Angel Locsin's name on a learning module he authored. The report said the module was allegedly prepared for the Schools Division of Occidental Mindoro.

    Based on the screenshots, the test was an essay under the PE and Health subject. It provided students a situation and then questions related to it. It asked students to answer "analytically" and "observe appropriate writing method, proper sentence construction and punctuation."

    Here was the situation, written as it was in the module, including the formatting (capitalization, in bold): 

    "Angel Locsin is an obese person. She, together with Coco Martin, eats fatty and sweet food in MANG INASAL fast food restaurant most of the time. In her house, she always watching television and does not have any physical activities."

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    The questions they need to answer after reviewing the above: 

    "1. What do you think will happen to Angel Locsin if she continues her lifestyle?"

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    2. How do lifestyle affects the health of an individual?"

    Yes, feel free to go through the above again.

    We want to say it's not even about the grammatical errors, but then again, this test has quite a few. "She always watching" — a typo error? Maybe. But what about question number 2?

    Plus, the grammar mistakes are unacceptable when the kids who take this will be graded according to "proper sentence construction and punctuation."

    Grammar aside, we can't imagine what the teacher (and whoever approved this to be a learning module in the first place) thought when he wrote these words. They are inappropriate, insensitive, and, yes, do harm to young minds (not to mention Angel herself). 

    After all, this test asks kids to make an essay, an exercise on honing critical thinking, or a lesson on cause and effect at the very least.

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    Teachers often use real people as examples to make kids listen, so they can "relate." But when you make it about a real person in this context, the lesson also becomes about values — and they are the wrong ones in this case. 

    This teacher's learning module tells kids it's normal for people to pass judgment on a person's weight. It means a child, who has been called "mataba" by family and friends, deserves to be shamed. It tells a child it is okay to make pronouncements about a person's life based on assumptions.

    The whole test teaches the opposite of empathy, an emotion that allows kids to understand other people's differences, care for others, and just be better humans. Parenting experts also say empathy is a soft skill kids need for success.

    And guess what? The grown-ups are in charge of nurturing empathy.

    Like all parents, we've run out of words to describe 2020. None of us ever imagined one calamity after another on top of a pandemic that continues to rage on. But, one way or another, parents will do everything to surmount every challenge for the love of their kids.

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    However, moms and dads need help, and teachers have always been their first responders when raising kids. It's a job with high expectations and comes with a lot of stress and little money. That is why people often say teaching is a calling — it is a choice.

    Once a person makes that choice, he understands that he has taken on a huge responsibility. Many great teachers have done this job with accountability, pride, and humility, never forgetting the trust parents have given them.

    Another thing that sets great teachers apart? They never stop learning. Just check out our hero teachers here.

    Spotted issues with your child's learning modules? Send us a screenshot plus your contact details at smartparentingsubmissions@gmail.com with the subject "learning module errors."

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