Saturday, June 07, 2014

The view from the PA operator, Lupang Hinirang in multiple time signatures...

There is a division memo requiring schools to sing the national anthem a cappela. I supposed the reason behind this move is to make the pupils internalize the lyric of  "Lupang Hinirang".

Being the school's PA operator, I observed that during flag ceremonies, the pupils especially the primary levels, are not singing the lyric and the melody correctly. This is only expected because they are still learning the song but what is troubling is that the intermediate pupils are not doing any better; they are still singing the national anthem like they are still in their primaries. I think someone up there noticed this too.

This school year the memo was enforced and the school have started singing Lupang Hinirang acapella. One of the glitches is that many teachers are still used to the old 4-4 time signature while the children , when there there was still accompaniment, are used to singing in 2-4 march time. The resulting performance is quite hmmm...troubling. But this is understandable and not the teacher's fault since there are very few of us who understand a little bit of music conducting.

Many teachers are conscious of how they conduct the national anthem, so when they are assigned to be the teacher in charge of flag ceremonies for the first time, they come to me first for coaching, and I readily teach them how to beat in 2-4 time.Some even asks me to guide them by. looking at me through the windows of the PA system while I shadow conduct.

Anyway, this is all part of the learning process: the daily rigid morning rituals. Though I for one question the wisdom of rote and routines in learning, it cannot be denied that it is--I think educators call this "classical conditioning"--a very important part of basic education. A lot of social skills are learned and acquired from this out of force of habit like: falling in line, obeying authorities, cooperation, etc.

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