October 7 saw the launch of the month-long Literacy Month celebration at Xavier School Nuvali. English and Filipino Department Chairperson Mr. Frederick Perez, presented the goal of Literacy Week and the list of activities that the students could look forward to. Among the activities that the students reacted to were the Book Fair and the author and illustrator visits scheduled throughout the month.
If XS San Juan had their Teen Read Week and Dress Me Literary activities, XSN had the character parade. During the assembly last October 14, Kinder to Grade 4 students paraded in front of the high school students in their costumes and headdresses, led by their teachers who were similarly dressed. The Kinder A class came dressed as characters and props from the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle; Kinder B represented itself as the book The Grouchy Lady Bug also by Eric Carle; all Grade 1 students came dressed all in brown with bear ears as they paraded in, representing the book We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen; Grade 2-A students represented themselves as the book The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss; Grade 2-B as the book Si Mariang Alimango by Tomas Lacson; Grade 3-A came in Chinese garb since they were presenting the book “Di Zi Gui” by Confucius; Grade 4-A represented the book Sandosenang Sapatos by Luis Gatmaitan (and revealing that the students each brought a pair of shoes to donate to the victims of the Zamboanga conflict), and Grade 4-B represented the book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl.
The high school teachers and other faculty and staff also came in costume, much to the surprise, delight, and fascination of the high schoolers. When the assembly ended, students–both grade school and high school–could be heard trying to guess who their subject teachers were dressed as. The guessing and the questioning–Who are you? Where did you get that costume? Can we come in costume next year?–continued well throughout the day as students probed and nagged their teachers about books and next year’s plans.
Author and Illustrator Visits
Mr. Perez had made sure that the students would be fully exposed to and engaged in literature from the launch all the way to the end. Part of the activities he scheduled was classroom visits by various authors and illustrators. Among those invited were Mrs. Zarah Gagatiga, author and former XS San Juan librarian and head of the GS Learning Resource Center; Jaime Bautista, XS alumnus and creator of popular comic Private Iris; Jason Moss, children’s book illustrator; Dr. Luis Gaitmaitan, children’s book author, and Jomike Tejido, creator of Foldabots. Students listened in rapt attention as the visitors shared their experiences and their work and got excited all over again when the visitors obliged their them with autograph-signing and photo-op sessions.
More visits are scheduled for the last week of the quarter, including a talk on film making and film appreciation by musical scorer and producer Mr. Jessie Lasaten.
No Literacy Month celebration is complete without a Book Fair, a first in the campus. National Book Store came last October 16-18 stocked with the latest books, comics, and even school supplies, and the entire community had fun perusing the shelves, either buying the items outright or dropping copies of books they wanted to read in the LRC Drop Box to help grow the school’s book collection.
Making Lit A Hit
So far, the school’s goal of raising literacy and literary awareness and appreciation in the student body has been successful. As the school enters the final week of the second quarter, the teachers see evidence that lit just might stay a hit with the students even after the celebrations have ended.