Having a chance to be introduced to different institutions or colleges is a great opportunity for the future educators like us. 26th of January 2017, our class got to visit one of the most excellent schools in Paranaque, known as Olivarez College. The school is recognized by prestigious external quality assurance known in the Philippines like PAASCU and PACUCOA.
My attention has been caught by the tagline of the school “Educating the mind, body, and soul” and I got curious about how this has been implemented and being lived in by the community. As we go over the tour, different facilities have been shown to us from the preschooler’s classrooms up to the graduate school classrooms, including the different laboratories, a comprehensive library, and sports facilities. We’ve been introduced to different administrators and educators of different levels. After our lunch with the school canteen, we had our chance to observe the different classes of our preference. At the end of the visit I was able to figure out my own interpretation of the school tag line:
Educating the Mind
The library of the Olivarez College that carries a large number of collections is also one of its strengths. It has a big space, where a student can spend their time to read and used different multimedia equipment as learning tools. The classroom is very conducive for the class size. As an additional aid, each room is equipped with 42 inches Flat LED Screen. The school student affairs department seems also very eager in providing the students with different activities enhancing their cognitive development outside the classroom. A lot of inter-school competitions they already participated and won. But for me, the strong point of that school when it comes to intellectual development was their faculties. In the classes that I’ve evaluated, the educators that were facilitating have both with profound knowledge about their subjects. Showing benevolence toward students manifested by the attitude of sincerity in ensuring that everyone will learn from what they are discussing. They were discussing assertively. Based on the interaction of the students, it evidently shows that the teacher is effective and efficient. They are expressing high interest in the collaborative discussion facilitated by the instructors. That was imposing that this institution is educating the intellect or the mind of their pupil intensively.
Educating the Body
Olivarez College is fortunate to have sports facilities and complex. There are two basketball courts, one big tennis court, and an Olympic-size swimming pool. They used to have a separate badminton court, but now to be converted and constructed as classrooms due to increasing demand for senior high school’s space in the school. Having that amenity, the students and the entire community have the complete access to physical body enhancement. As discussed by the student affairs department, the school actively partakes in different inter-school competition in terms of sports and other physical activities. Frequently sport in school is monotonous and favors the more athletic students in a class. Variety is significant and the institution should consider those factors, that incorporating fitness to the student life regime is relevant in their holistic development. This is how the Olivarez College educates the body.
Educating the Soul
Among the three dimensions, this one is the most daring part, since there is no direct measure or scaling to identify whether this really exists to a certain individual on the campus. However, along with the tour, we were brought to an area where community engagement was being established and sustain. This is an old building where they taught the preschoolers for free. Some livelihood projects were also being done in the said area. The students, especially the nurses were also exposed to several medical missions outside the school, which as a personal statement coming from me (when I was a Nursing Student), plays a great part in individual aspiration to be a good citizen. It will also help them identify their sense of purpose. That is an important action that connects the students to the reality and to their community. This also develops the social responsibilities among folks. About the staff, the long tenure of the majority is also a good indicator that their soul was well satisfied on how the administrators treat them. And that for me is a complete exhibition that this school is really educating the soul of its community.
We are immersing ourselves to the different institution, not to just to compare and evaluate but also to discover and acquire best practices to be our version of a good educator or administrator someday. For those who are already in the teaching profession, exposure to various set-up will help them identify their strong points and weaknesses and emulate the qualities that are relevant to them. Also, this can be the perfect time to critically assess the learning environment, including all the aspects and see how it affects the learning process of the students as a whole.