Recently, Mariel and I have been exploring various curricula for our respective kids. Our homeschooled students are getting older (mine is 6, hers are 5 and 8) and we feel that it’s the right time to supplement Five in a Row with something that will challenge and excite them more.
Right now, we are literally hyperventilating over two programs, one of which is Mater Amabilis, a free Charlotte Mason Catholic curriculum. We are attracted to it because of the gentleness of the methodology, as well as the wonderful books listed in the program. Mornings of reading aloud and afternoons of nature walks, chores, and handiwork?! Sign us up, stat!
Philippine folk tales and classic legends
As with Five in a Row, however, the stories and books in Mater Amabilis are very Western. The reading list includes a book of English folk tales which I opted not to purchase.
Thankfully, I remembered that Tahanan Books has anthologies of Philippine folk tales and classic legends. We carry these in our online children’s bookshop, both English and Tagalog editions.
The series has six books with stories compiled by theme such as water tales, animal tales, sky tales, and earth tales. Each has about eight stories beautifully retold and illustrated by various authors and illustrators.
The tales explore how ancient Filipinos described how things came about. You can also learn about how they taught morals and passed their values from one generation to the next. It gives us a glimpse of how our ancestors lived and how it has affected our culture as Filipinos.
With about 40 stories across all the books, the stories are perfect for weekly read-alouds for the 30+ week school year. (Or you can just read the stories at bedtime whether you’re homeschooling or not!)
Revisit Philippine folk tales
It makes me a bit sad to think that present-day Filipino kids are not exposed to our traditional folk tales anymore. Gone are the days when children would marvel at the legend of the pineapple or be well-versed in the stories about Bathala.
Parents, let’s introduce our beautiful native stories to a new generation of readers, shall we? Let’s read to them at least one story a week, or do what our ancestors used to do… relate the story orally, that is, if you still remember!
Do you have other titles that you care to share with us?