"The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others." - Mahatma Gandhi

Monday, October 11, 2010


Important Reminders:

Reflection essays for the International Coastal Cleanup must be turned in or posted on your blogs by tonight. (It has been two weeks since the event, right?)

Proposals for Girls' Basketball and Boys' Soccer are due this week. Talk to your respective Coaches if you need help setting achievable / demonstrable goals appropriate for you and your CAS program.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

International Coastal Cleanup

September 25, 2010 will mark the 25th Annual International Coastal Cleanup activity spearheaded by Ocean Conservancy (click on the link to find out more about this organization).

The Lighthouse Marina Resort has invited our school to take part in this global campaign to clean up our beaches and contribute to the rehabilitation of our beloved planet.
"Together with Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority and its partners, we can help represent Subic Bay as well as the Philippines in this very special event and show that we can start a sea of change and make a positive impact on the world around us." - Argee Gomez, Resident Manager of Lighthouse Marina Resort
The goal is to get at least 1000 participants to join. This will be held down at the Waterfront, stretching all the way to Moonbay Marina. Event starts at 6:00am on Saturday, September 25.

I am looking for a handful  of seniors (maximum of 5) who would like to take this on as a service activity. What will you need to do?
  1. Promote the event and encourage the your peers and community members to participate.
  2. Organize the group of volunteers and get them ready for the event on Sept 25.
  3. Coordinate with the volunteers and the school for possible transportation needs.
  4. Coordinate with Mr. Argee Gomez of The Lighthouse for further instructions and details (promotional materials, maybe invite a guest speaker for Chapel) about the event.
  5. Participate in the the actual cleanup day and oversee your volunteers. 
If you are interested in taking the lead on this, please let me know right away by commenting on this post. We'll need to sit down and discuss certain details to get you started with your work. If you'd rather just participate, then read up on the goals of this activity using the links on this post and write up your proposal.

There will be Brent teachers participating as well, but this is certainly a wonderful opportunity for you to address several of the learning outcomes that you have been missing out on. 

For more information on International Coastal Cleanup, click on the image below,

(Click the image to learn more about the International Coastal Cleanup)

or watch this:

(Click this button to add this event to your Google Calendar.)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Giving Back

Has your bubble been burst yet?

Last year during a teachers' conference in Manila, I listened to a student deliver a keynote speech in front of a big theater hall full of teachers, principals, and other professional educators. To be honest, when I first saw the agenda for the day I was actually a bit surprised that a student was invited to speak. I remember saying to myself, "Wow, this kid must be really something..", but I didn't think much of it then. After all, Taylor Mali was speaking right after him. (If you're not familiar with Taylor Mali, google him and watch the videos. He's a very entertaining and inspiring teacher and slam poet. You'll understand what I mean once you've seen the videos of his poetry.)

Sam Ramos-Jones was a senior then at the host school, International School Manila (ISM). He presented his thoughts on what giving back meant to him, and how Service Learning/CAS made an impact in his life. Watch the video (in two parts below) and reflect on what he has to say. (He speaks a bit fast, so feel free to rewind the video at anytime.)

Part 1

Part 2

I can barely remember what Taylor Mali shared that morning. 

Sam's reflections and challenge, however, continue to inspire me to push CAS into our school's consciousness so we can be the change our world needs.

Sam's teacher was right: "When we listen, we can learn a lot from our students. As long as we continue to nurture their creativity, provide opportunities for their growth, and are inspired by them, we can all be the change, together."

I am listening. =)

*Sam was a 2009 EARCOS Global Citizen Award recipient for his work with PREP (Promoting Rural Education in the Philippines). Learn more about PREP here.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Boys' Volleyball Varsity Program proposal (sample)

Here's an example of what you'll get when you submit a proposal. Either you forward the email to me, or paste it like this as a post. Either way, we get to examine the responses (and get automatic documentation too!). Hope this gives you an idea of what I will be looking for in your proposals. Leave a comment if you have any questions. =)

Boys' Volleyball Varsity

I plan to train and coach the Boys' Volleyball Varsity team for school year 2010-2011. I will be doing most of the planning for the regular training days, but there will be opportunities to collaborate with Coach Higgins and Mr. Davis regarding weekend tournaments and weekly game days. As a trainer, I am responsible for the functional conditioning of the players for the sport, as well as developing their skills as individual and team players. As a Coach, it is my task to provide these young men with game instructions, guidance, and opportunities to collaborate with each other to maximize each individual's strengths and to help compensate for each other's weaknesses.

- Hide quoted text -
I am picking up from where I left off two years ago. I will continue to provide guidance and inspiration to these developing athletes. Volleyball is just a tool to help these young men learn about life and the principles of hard work, perseverance, teamwork, and camaraderie. By regularly evaluating the progress the players are making I will be identifying practices that work and strategies that need to be improved on. The decisions that have to be made, from choosing the composition of the team to who deserves to play and in which positions will provide numerous opportunities for me to consider the ethical implications of my choices. Coaching and training on top of all my other responsibilities is no easy task, and as the workload piles on perseverance and commitment will certainly be necessary for success.

The students who join and make it to the team will certainly benefit from the program. They receive physical conditioning and skill development in a controlled environment. They will also be exposed to various opportunities to grow and learn to be accepting of others, especially of those from other cultures. The program will benefit me as well, for it will develop my skills and talents as a trainer and coach. As much as the students learn from me, I, too, learn a lot from my interactions with the team.

Practice happens daily, 4-5:30pm, at the Gym. ISAC tournament will be held in Cebu on October 6 - 10, 2010. There will be Thursday tune-up games every week, and possibly two weekend tournaments (one travelling, one at-home).

Enrico Tolentino

Brent Subic

Student Agreement

I will commit to the activity at the above-stated time/s and given duration to the best of my ability. I understand that it is my responsibility to see this activity to its completion, and once approved, can only be cancelled through negotiation with the supervisor and the CAS Coordinator. (Click the SUBMIT button to signify your agreement.)
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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Dear Hillary Campaign

Here is a service opportunity you can take part in to raise awareness about a serious global issue.

The Dear Hillary Campaign was started by college students to raise awareness about the horrible situation women face in conflict areas of the East Congo in Africa. Their aim is to reach students in the U.S. and around the world and get them to start "Dear Hillary" chapters in their schools to educate their community about this issue and hopefully move people to do something about it.

If you are interested, this is what you need to do:
  1. Visit the Dear Hillary Campaign site and learn as much as you can about the project.
  2. Write up an activity proposal for the activity.
  3. Register a chapter on the project's site.
  4. Organize a viewing of the film, "The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo" here at Brent (or in a more public setting in SBMA or even Olongapo) on Oct. 26, 2010.

Here is a trailer of the film:

Shot in the war zones of the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2006, this film breaks the silence surrounding the tens of thousands of women and girls who have been kidnapped, raped and sexually tortured in that country's intractable civil war. The filmmaker, herself a survivor of gang rape, talks with activists, peacekeepers, physicians and with the rapists themselves. She travels to remote villages to meet rape survivors who have been shamed and abandoned, providing a piercing, intimate look into the horror, struggle and ultimate grace of their lives.

Here is the official site of the film.

Video: Creativity, Action, Service

Here's a very short video about the core values of the program: creativity, action and service.

Gets you going, right? =)

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Inspiration From Within

As you try to figure out which activities you'd like to pursue for the year, I'd like you to check out this site, Leap Ahead  (click on the image to go to the site). Its a non-profit organization put up by Kristoffer Munden, a Brent Manila graduate who is now a senior at Boston College. Read his message here and learn how his experiences moved him to put up this foundation (be sure to read the comments).

Here's an article about him from the Boston College press.

Any worthwhile undertaking will have its challenges, but if you believe in what you are working for, you can make things happen. Kristoffer was in your place just a few years back. Hopefully knowing that a fellow Brentonian is making a difference will encourage and empower you to make things happen in our little corner of the world.

Good luck and happy planning =)

(Thanks for sharing this, Ms. Wright.)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Online Activity Proposal Form

Here's a sample of the CAS Activity Proposal form. Use this form for all the activities you will be proposing for the year, including any activities that you may be continuing from last year. You can access the form by clicking on the image below (link also available on the Resources page on this blog). Don't forget to click "Submit" when you're done.

You will be able to edit your responses to this form whenever necessary, even after you've clicked "Submit". All changes will be reflected on my spreadsheet where all the data you input will be stored.

Make sure to check the box right before the "Submit" button which says, "Send me a copy of my responses."

Doing so will get you  a copy of your responses via email. I suggest that you copy your form responses from this email and make it a post in your blog. Why? For several reasons:

  1. You have another copy of your activity proposal should something go wrong with your email account.
  2. Posting your activity proposal makes it much easier for me to comment on and ask questions about it through the comments section. We can share this with your supervisor as well to get further feedback.
  3. This becomes additional documentation for the planning stage of each activity. All our conversations will be threaded and be easier to follow.
In case you don't have a blog or it's just not your thing, then forward the email you received to etolentino@brentsubic.edu.ph and I'll send my comments, questions, and suggestions via email as well.

Sounds like a win-win situation for just a little bit of extra effort, right? Well, what are we waiting for? Let's get to work! =)

For the Seniors

For those of you who are done with the Self-Review, use this document to help sort out what you've done so far for CAS. This can help you determine what you have to focus on for your second year.

CAS Year 2 Planning form

Hope this helps =)

(Check our CAS calendar for deadlines.)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Healing Power of Music

*This is a re-post from the BISB CAS blog. I think it's a great idea that can easily be adapted not only for music but for other performing arts as well. As Ms. Wright mentioned, helping to organize something like this is also an opportunity for non-performers to collaborate and be part of an amazing undertaking.

Check out the videos and visit the sites to get a better idea of how you might be able to put together something similar here in Subic. 

*This older video shows John Mayer and Jason Mraz with MoC.

What do you think? :)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

CAS Step-by-Step (Part One)

A couple of your classmates have been asking very similar questions about how to go about their CAS work. Here's a quick run-through of the steps to be taken and forms to be filled out to get things started:

Step 1:  Answer this Self-Review document.

Step 2:  Have a planning session (or sessions, if necessary) with your CAS coordinator (or chosen faculty advisor) to identify possible projects/activities you can initiate or take part in.

You can use this form to help you organize your ideas.

Step 3:  Once you've sorted out your initial projects/activities, fill out the online CAS Activity Proposal form for EACH project or activity. Read more about this step and the additional instructions from this post.

Learn more about the Learning Outcomes of the program here (also found on page 6 of the Subic CAS Student handbook).

Step 4:  Once your proposal is approved, fill in the details for the CAS Planning Form (page 16 of the Subic CAS Student Handbook). Begin carrying out your plans.

Step 5:   Make sure to document your work regularly. Have your supervisor sign off on your activity log for every entry you make. Write about whatever you're doing, accomplishing, and/or struggling with in your journal/blog at least once a week until your project/activity is completed. (Don't forget to take photos or videos if applicable.)

Hopefully these first 5 steps help clarify the things you need to do to get started. Leave a comment if you have any questions or suggestions.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Video: Education for a Better World: the IB Diploma Programme

Here's a short but complete overview of what the IB program is all about. It might be a great way to remind ourselves of the WHY behind all the late nights, long hours, and hard work.

Description from the site: 
"In their own words, the IB Diploma Programme explained by IB students and teachers."

Enjoy =)

For more inspiration, click here.

- mistahTee