By: Lerma T. Merueña, Master Teacher II
Majayjay Elementary School
Majayjay Sub-Office-SDO Laguna
Being able to surpass and brave the challenges the pandemic of COVID-19 had brought us, our education sector could be able to say that we somehow were able to continue learning at home; however, the real question is, what type of learning was acquired by the students during a pandemic? Were they able to improve their knowledge, skills, and abilities, or did it just not do any good to them?
The education sector is one of the sectors that got the biggest impact from the pandemic. Studies show that most students’ language literacy and numeracy performance declined over the past two years. With this, the Department of Education (DepEd) launched the Learning Recovery and Continuity Program (LRCP). It is consisting of strategic actions and plans on how to combat these persisting problems caused by the pandemic.
In terms of the reading skills of our students, we had already seen that before the pandemic, this is already a matter of concern. As per the result of the 2018 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), our country scored lowest in reading comprehension among 79 participating countries.
With this, Majayjay Elementary School continues to find ways on how to improve our learners’ reading skills now that they are back inside the school. One of the school’s programs, projects, and activities proposed by Mrs. Lerma T. Merueña is Project STARS or Students-at-Risks. This project targets students who need remediation and intervention – students who are at risk of not being able to learn how to read properly with comprehension.
Being part of the projects initiated by the school — which serves as part of the Learning Recovery Plan — is designed to help students recover from their learning losses. In terms of reading, these students are to stay in school for 30 minutes after class to have a skilled teacher in reading teach them how to learn the basics and reinforce prior learning to make it meaningful to the learner.
Involving a series of daily lessons for just 30 minutes, this project aims to create a habit of learning in the students; make learning more fun and bridge the learning they have from before to the new one. However, not all students find learning to read an easy process. These struggling readers can sometimes find reasons not to attend their reading lessons as they might have developed low self-esteem. Nevertheless, learning the proper reading skills varies for every child. The only target of this project is to produce a young learner who struggled to read into a reader who strives to always read.
As a reading teacher, our success is determined by the number of students who learned how to read; improved in reading and excelled in reading. Yet, for any struggling reader, this might take time, but remember that we will get there. To achieve success is to achieve results. Learning how to set expectations for the students will make them more responsible for their learning.
Our learners – who are still in learning recovery from the pandemic – need guidance and assistance from us, teachers. Let us become the light that will guide them to re-acquire the needed skills that they need to become competent 21st-century learners. With project STARS, we know that every child will be looking at the stars at the end of the day with a smile on their faces – for they know that with the skill they are learning to acquire right now, they can do anything.