And another Filipino has brought pride to the country! Arizona-based Filipino teacher John Carlo Tulinao, who is called “Mr. T” by his students at the Amberlea Elementary School, received the Shell Urban Science Educator Development Award under the 2021 National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) Teacher Awards program, as per GMA News Online.
He won the award for incorporating elements of music and culture in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) curriculum of his first grade students. In teaching the STEM program, he incorporated various musical instruments from all over the world. These included African drums, Japanese Koto, and the Tongatong or the bamboo musical instrument from the Kalinga province in the Philippines.
“I present the instruments before we delve into the scientific concept, we first study what is the cultural concept, what is the sociological concept, geographical concept of the instrument. Even the materials are part of the curriculum,” he explained. “As the kids learn the process, their perspectives broaden. If you will not isolate the concept ng music, you will see that it has other elements as well. There is Math, there is Science, you just need to look at it from a different point of view, and your curriculum is already right there in front of you.”
Tulinao comes from Antipolo, Rizal. He grew up in a family full of musicians. Tulinao took up his bachelor’s degree in education at the University of Rizal System in Morong, Rizal, while at the same time attending music classes outside of the university. Soon, he took up a Masters Program in Music Education in Santa Isabel College in Manila.
Before he moved to the U.S, Tulinao was part of the National Training Team of the Department of Education, conducting national training in arts and music for teachers, and writing modules and plans for the MAPEH subject during the rollout of the K-12 program. He’s currently taking up a doctorate program at the University of Miami. Isn’t it wonderful to see more Pinoys bring honor to the country by following their passion?