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Recognizing the link between pre-service and in-service teaching, Florida State University (FSU), in partnership with Bicol University (BU) and West Visayas State University (WVSU) and with support from USAID, Department of Education, and RTI International, provided technical support to the Bachelor in Elementary Education (BEED) and Bachelor in Early Childhood Education (BECED) teachers in the enhancement of Literacy Development and Teaching Beginning Reading syllabi, the production of corresponding modules, and the enrichment of teaching faculty capacity in the use of these modules.

Dr. Marion Feshmire, Dr. Ana Helga Marty, Dr. Adrienne Barnes, and Ms. Kate Schell, four faculty research experts from Florida State University, spearheaded the project.

The module development was conceptualized as a face-to-face endeavor that started in 2019 following the MOA between the two universities under BU’s internationalization program. However, due to the restrictions brought by the pandemic, the mentors and module writers had to resort to zoom meetings and managed to bridge the time difference between the Philippines and the United States.

With technical assistance from the FSU professors, Dr. Norilyn O. De Chavez, Prof. Milyn G. Lleva, Prof. Annabelle Arena, Prof. Creslita G. Antonio, and Prof. Katrin Lourdes P. Torre, the module on Literacy Development was created.

On the other hand, the Teaching Beginning Reading module was written by Prof. Apple N. Rubio, Prof. Julie Ann B. Yanto, Dr. Norilyn O. De Chavez, Prof. Milyn G. Lleva, Prof. Annabelle A. Arena, and Prof. Stephanie N.  Despabiladeras. The modules produced were pilot-tested by some of the module writers themselves in the second semester of SY 2021-2022 at the BUCE.

Based on the feedback from the faculty/module writers, providing activities for vocabulary development proved to be the most challenging; hence, Dr. Ana H. Marty provided a one-day capacity building for the teachers through a Vocabulary and Reading Comprehension Instruction workshop.

Prior to this endeavor, Dr. Marty met with BU President Dr. Arnulfo M. Mascariñas, for a courtesy visit. Dr. Mascariñas lauded the efforts of the faculty module writers and expressed his interest in having the work replicated in the other courses. The capacity-building activity took place last August 5, 2022, at the BUCE Training Hall, which was attended by all the teachers in the Early and Late Childhood Education Department.

With the modules done, ABC+ organized the Preservice Dissemination Activity, during which the sponsors and FSU research professors formally handed over the finalized course modules and materials to the partner state universities on August 11-12, 2022, at the Alpha Suites in Makati City, Manila.

The module writers shared their experiences in developing and pilot testing the modules with the representatives from DepEd, CHED, and other teacher education institutions. Dr. Lorna Miña, Dean of BUCE, Dr. Ma. Teresa M. Abainza, former BUCE Associate Dean, and Prof. Miles G Lleva, program adviser of ELC, also shared the college’s plans to sustain the gains from the work accomplished. One of the module writers from Bicol University, Prof. Julie Ann B. Yanto, co-hosted the event. | Ma. Teresa M. Abainza/BUCE