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K-12 Basic Education Curriculums Integration of Localization and Contextualization

In our increasingly more global world, learning is important but there are different
viewpoints on how to best teach different lessons to the learners. Many nations in the developing
and developed world have decided to hand over a portion of their national school curricula to
local districts and local communities, in order to tie local realities into the learning process. If a
methodology could be used that requires relatively little preparation and yet maintains the
communicative properties of meaningful interactions, then teachers may be encouraged to
incorporate these strategies into the classroom.

A crucial failing of educational systems, worldwide has been their lack of relevance to the
lives of learners. This lack of relevance weakens the mentioned connection and bond between
communities, learners, and schools; and thus damages educational outcomes through decreased
student, community, and teacher engagement in the learning process.

It is believed that by making learning in school relevant and meaningful to the childrens
everyday lives and needs, the interaction between child and school will become a more active and
enriching experience, rather than a passive, tiring, or alienating experience for the child.

One of the key characteristics of the K-12 curriculum is the integration of localization and
contextualization. Department of Education (DepEd) teachers knew about the principle of
localization and contextualization for it is already expressed officially in DEpEd mission which
states To protect and promote the right of every Filipino to quality, equitable, culture-based, and
complete basic education Likewise, the concept of localization and contextualization is being
stipulated in the provisions of 1987 Philippine Constitution particularly on Article XIV, Section
14 which states that The State shall foster the preservation, enrichment, and dynamic evolution
of a Filipino national culture based on the principle of unity in diversity in a climate of free artistic
and intellectual expression and Article XIV, Section 5. (1), which states that The State shall take
into account regional and sectoral needs and conditions and shall encourage local planning in the
development of educational policies and programs.

Correspondingly, there is Implementing Rules and Regulations for RA 10533 Section. 10.2
d and h. The curriculum shall be contextualized and global;The curriculum shall be flexible
enough to enable and allow schools to localize, indigenize, and enhance the curriculum based on
their respective educational and social contexts.

Curriculum contextualization has gradually become a central theme in discussions about

teaching and learning. Understood as a way to bring teaching-learning closely to students' realities,
contextualization is a prerequisite in addressing the content and organization of activities to be
undertaken in the classroom. By helping students to relate the educational tasks with their
knowledge and everyday experiences, curricular contextualization facilitates the linking of theory
and practice. Furthermore, it allows students to give meaning and value to what they learn in
school. Therefore, contextualizing knowledge at school is a process that aims to produce a
meaningful curriculum for students.

Contextual teaching and learning is a learning concept that helps teacher connect the
learning material to the real condition of the student and encourage students to use their own
knowledge in their daily life. This method will help students to be a more independent and natural
learners in their effort to develop their knowledge (Johnson 2002). While, contextual learning in
Indonesia stands on 7 principles. They are constructivism, inquiry, questioning, learning
community, modelling, reflection, and authentic assessment. According to Crawford (2001),
contextual learning can be used with 5 strategies - relating, experiencing, applying, collaborating,
and transferring.

However, there are still problems regarding the application of contextual teaching and
learning, such as the availability of subject material, school conditions, learning access, student
achievement, and teachers capability that is still considered low. Some schools have applied
contextual learning but in reality, teachers still use conventional learning system. Since teachers
do not completely use the system that has been planned for them, this paper will serve as an eye-
opener to them that teaching through localization and contextualization is really the answer for
meaningful learning and there lots of legal basis in implantation of it. Thus, the DepEd is trying to
do their best to conduct trainings for teachers and to evaluate appropriate learning materials for the
students for immediate action of addressing the issue.

With this, everyone should have in mind that contextualization is a way to promote socially
and powerful knowledge, it focuses a set of theoretical issues that provide a conceptual dimension
to contextualization. The curriculum is alive, it changes depending who is implementing it, where
and when it is implemented.

Prepared by:
Donna T. Santos
Division of Bataan
Position Paper