Plenary Speakers

Synopsis: K to 12 Basic Education Curriculum

One of the reforms in the basic education introduced in 2011 by the Department of Education is the Enhanced Basic Education Program of 2013, now known as “Republic Act 10533, The Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013”. The K to 12 Basic Education Program seeks to enhance the quality of basic education. K to 12 means Kindergarten and the 12 years of elementary and secondary education: (Elementary: Grades 1-6; Secondary: Junior HS–Grades 7-10, and Senior HS-Grades 11-12). The K to 12 Curriculum aims to produce graduates who are ready for employment, entrepreneurship, middle level skills development and higher education. It specifically describes a graduate as: (a) an empowered individual who has learned: the foundations for learning throughout life, the competence to engage in work and be productive, the ability to coexist in fruitful harmony with local and global communities, the capability to engage in autonomous, creative and critical thinking, and the capacity and willingness to transform others and one’s self; (b) productive and responsible citizen equipped with the essential competencies, skills and values, for both life-long learning and employment.

Dr. Marilyn D. Dimaano
Bureau of Elementary Education
Department of Education

Dr. Marilyn D. Dimaano has a Doctorate in Education in Educational Management. She has attended several international trainings related to educational administration and project work in science and mathematics.

Prior to her post as the Acting Director of the Department of Education Bureau of Elementary Education, Dr. Dimaano served as the Schools Division Superintendent of the Division of Sorsogon in Bicol. During her early years as a teacher, she served as the adviser of the students who developed an improvised slide projector that won in the International Science and Engineering Fair in Puerto Rico. Dr. Dimaano was also one of the regional and division teacher-trainers for SEDP and other DepEd training programs.
Using Lesson Study to Promote Teaching Mathematics through Problem Solving and Teaching Science through Inquiry

Through its Collaborative Lesson Research and Development (CLRD) Project, NISMED has been working with teachers of different year/grade levels in four high schools and four elementary schools in Metro Manila. The collaboration is aimed at promoting the learner-centered teaching approaches, teaching mathematics through problem solving and teaching science through inquiry using lesson study. These approaches provide plenty of opportunities for students to genuinely contribute to the development, application, and extension of mathematical and scientific ideas in the classroom.

Lesson study is a school-based and teacher-led continuing professional development model for teachers which originated in Japan. In lesson study, a group of teachers research their own practice in order to improve student learning. They go through a cycle of collaboratively planning, designing, implementing, reflecting on, and revising a lesson based on pieces of evidence about student thinking and learning gathered during the actual implementation of the lesson. CLRD is part of NISMED’s relentless effort to develop local models that support Filipino teachers’ professional learning amidst constraints that challenge their teaching competence.

The presentation will include short video clips showing that students are capable of solving open-ended problems in mathematics and science given the opportunity.

Dr. Soledad A. Ulep

Dr. Ulep obtained her Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics Education at the University of Texas in Austin, Texas, USA in 1990 as a Fullbright-Hays Scholar. At present, she is the Director of UP NISMED. In 2009, she was awarded the Gawad Chanselor sa Natatanging Research, Extension and Professional Staff (REPS) in UP Diliman.

Dr. Ulep has been representing the Philippines in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Lesson Study Project since 2006. As part of her commitment to this project, she coordinates UP NISMED’s Collaborative Lesson Research and Development (CLRD) Project. Dr. Ulep currently serves as a reviewer/consultant in DepEd’s development of Grades 3 and 9 teachers’ and students’ materials
Innovations in a Science Classroom: Teacher’s Questions and Students’ Reactions

Japanese international cooperation of innovation on science and mathematics education through Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has a long history. The first JICA project was launched at UP NISMED in 1994. Since then, a very close relationship continues between the University of the Philippines and Hiroshima University. In this presentation, experiences in visits to Kenya, Zambia, Ghana, Bangladesh, and Cambodia will be shared. As a result of these visits, it was proposed that instruction be changed from teacher-centered to learned-centered. Recently, the Japanese style “Lesson Study (LS)” was introduced for better mathematics and science instruction. The learner-centered approach and the system of LS are well known in every project, however, the implementation of these in the classroom seems to be difficult. The important information for innovation might lack the method to analyze the classroom lesson which elucidates teacher’s intention and students’ thinking. Therefore, a method to analyze teacher and learners’ talk in the classroom will be proposed in this presentation for better and effective LS.

The learners can actively participate in the lesson through teacher’s questions. There have been several researches analyzing teacher’s question and learners’ reactions. Based on the field data of science classrooms in Zambia, Ghana and Bangladesh, most of the teacher’s questions were only on checking learner’s knowledge, and were rarely on probing what learner’s think. When teachers ask questions, they expect learner’s correct answer, rather than their way of thinking, sometimes neglecting why the learner could not respond correctly. A feedback method for learner’s incorrect answer is proposed in order to stimulate learner’s thinking.

Dr. Hideo Ikeda
Graduate School for
International Development
and Cooperation
Hiroshima University Japan

Dr. Hideo Ikeda is a professor at the Graduate School of International Development and Cooperation (IDEC), Hiroshima University, Japan. He obtained his Bachelor of Science degree from the Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Hiroshima University in 1974. From the Graduate School of Science of the same university, he was conferred a Master’s degree in Science in 1976 and Doctor of Science in 1986. 

Dr. Ikeda spent his entire professional career at Hiroshima University. Over the last 35 years, he has served as a research associate, science teacher for the attached high school, and faculty member of IDEC and Faculty of Education. For four years, he served as Dean of IDEC.

Dr. Ikeda has been author and co-author of various published papers and books. His research interests include biology education, plant mutation, irradiation mutant, genetics, plant egg cell and plant reproduction. He was also active with long-term international trainings and served as the expert for the Science and Mathematics Education Manpower Development Project (SMEMDP) in the Philippines and Strengthening of Mathematics and Science in Secondary Education (SMASSE) in Kenya.
Developing Experimental Environments for Students-with- Computers Investigating School Mathematics Through Dynamic Visual Representations

Students today grow up in a culture, which mostly depends on visual representations, and wherein messages are delivered dynamically through pictures. Students are used to receiving information in a very active mode. While written forms of representation are still important, it is necessary to consider how mathematical ideas can be represented through a visually dynamic medium. This strategy itself may help students to investigate and explore interesting mathematical ideas in a new and different way. 

The use of multiple mathematical representations promotes students’ understanding of school mathematical concepts. Research indicates that positive gains in understanding of mathematical topics appear in cases when multiple modes of dynamic mathematical representation are used effectively. Multiple modes of representation improve transitions from concrete manipulations to abstract thinking, and provide a foundation for continued learning. Students in most schools now have access to computers in their classrooms, and an increasing large percentage of these students have private computers at home. As the goals for technology education and the promises of educational change have grown, the hardware and the software used in both schools and homes have improved steadily. Students are provided opportunities to do research and apply complex thinking skills by working with real problems and computer simulations. Learning becomes fun and more challenging. Students are taught programming languages that aid them in making a computer become a real tool. All students should be introduced to such computer applications.

This study investigates the effectiveness of experimental environments for students-with-computers exploring school mathematics through dynamic representations. The purpose of this talk is to share some examples in which dynamic models can empower students to visualize mathematics.

Tran Vui
College of Education
Hue University Vietnam

Dr. Tran Vui is an Associate Professor in mathematics education at the College of Education of Hue University, Vietnam where he supervises graduate students whose interests are aligned to mathematical reasoning, literacy, modelling and problem solving. After obtaining his Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics, he worked as Senior Specialist of Mathematics Education at the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization - Regional Center for Science and Mathematics in Malaysia where he was exposed to conducting training courses for mathematics teachers in Southeast Asia. 

Most of Dr. Tran Vui’s international education research projects are focused on lesson study and mathematical thinking in the Asia Pacific Region. In the last five years, he published ten books with topics on multiple representations, innovative approaches and new trends in teaching and learning mathematics. He also served as project investigator of three national key researches that were supported by the Ministry of Education and Training of Vietnam and the National Foundation for Science and Technology Development.
Integrating the Essential Elements of Lesson Study in Pre-service Mathematics Teacher Education

The study explored how integrating the essential elements of Lesson Study as a powerful intervention in the pre-service mathematics teacher education contributes to prospective teachers’ facility in realizing their theoretical knowledge in the actual practice of teaching. Whereas Lesson Study is widely being performed in in-service mathematics teacher education, this investigation sought to explore practices in Japanese pre-service teacher education environments that potentially nurture amongst the prospective teachers their facility in being able to successfully participate in Lesson Study activities as they commence their actual in-service teaching. Thus, in this investigation, the focal research question was “How are the essential elements of Lesson Study integrated in pre-service teacher education in Japan?” However, this umbrella question for this study was further divided into two main strands: (a) What skills, competencies, or habits of mind are needed to be cultivated in pre-service mathematics teacher education in order for prospective teachers to optimize their experiences in student teaching programs, and eventually, successfully participate in Lesson Study as they step into the actual teaching profession?; and (b) In incorporating the elements of Lesson Study in pre-service teacher education, what mechanisms facilitate towards comprehensive reforms of mathematics teaching? Using phenomenological case study, this inquiry sought to understand the underlying principles behind the accession of Lesson Study in pre-service mathematics teacher education, specifically in the context of student teaching practicum in a Fuzoku School. 

Five interconnected themes that pertain to skills, competencies, and habits of mind were elevated from the investigation: (1) acclimatizing to the school contexts and classroom (socio-mathematical) norms; (2) making sense of powerful resources for classroom instruction; (3) utilizing the school and classroom contexts as venues of inquiry; (4) engaging in critical reflections; and (5) forging the spirit of collaboration. On the other hand, four mechanisms that facilitated towards change were extracted from the analysis of student journals, together with other sources of data: (1) sensitization to images of reform; (2) forged reifications of learning experiences; (3) student feedback and (4) immersion in communities of practice.

Finally, the culmination of this research raised issues on deeper and more detailed investigations on the institutional conditions that make it possible for Lesson Study to be effectively integrated in the Japanese pre-service mathematics teacher education. This led to a future direction of a more robust body of research in this area (mathematics teacher education) – including those with comparative nature – that deems to reflect on the potential replicability or transferability of Lesson Study outside Japan.

Levi E. Elipane
Institute of Mathematics
University of the Philippines

Dr. Levi Elipane earned his Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics Education at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. His dissertation entitled “ Integrating the Essential Elements of Lesson Study in Pre-service Mathematics Teacher Education”, which was based on an empirical case study in a pre-service teacher environment in Japan, has been published by the said university. After graduation, he has been active in local and international education conferences as paper presenter and resource speaker where he shares his researches on lesson study in mathematics education.

Dr. Elipane is currently a lecturer at the Institute of Mathematics at the University of the Philippines Diliman and a school principal at a private school in Antipolo City, Philippines. He was a co-author of the book “Transforming School Mathematics Education in the 21st Century” published by the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization – Regional Centre for Science and Mathematics—the leading research and teacher development organization in the Southeast Asian Region.
Learning Progressions for the K to 12 Curriculum: Enhancing Teacher Professional Development

Research on learning progressions is a very promising area in education because of its potential to bridge what is known about student learning and classroom practice. Defined as “descriptions of the successively more sophisticated ways of thinking about a topic that can follow one another as children learn about and investigate a topic” (NRC, 2007), learning progressions can guide the design and articulation of a K-12 science curriculum or the selection of a new instructional program that is aligned with state or national standards. Learning progressions can inform all aspects of K-12 education, including curriculum, instruction, and assessment, as well as teacher professional development programs such as Lesson Study.

The most comprehensive presentation of learning progressions to date is the collection of conceptual strand maps published in the two-volume Atlas of Science Literacy (American Association for the Advancement of Science [AAAS], 2001, 2007) and available in digital form through the NSDL Science Literacy Maps at The online maps serve as a concept browsing interface for accessing teaching resources in the National Science Digital Library (NSDL). Like the print Atlas maps, the digital maps can transform the way teachers think about the K-12 science curriculum. By presenting a coherent story of the “big ideas” in science and how they develop over time, the maps show how teaching at each grade level can be shaped by what comes before and after and by thematic and conceptual connections that can be woven together to provide engaging and meaningful contexts for students’ learning. The digital maps can also become powerful tools for helping teachers improve their own knowledge of the science content, of how students are likely to make progress in learning that content, and of how instruction and curriculum resources might be organized to promote student learning.

Francis I. Molina
Adviser and Consultant
National Science Digital
Library (NSDL), USA

Dr. Molina is currently an Associate and Consultant of the National Science Digital Library (NSDL), a collection of high-quality online educational resources for teaching and learning, with current emphasis on the sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. He was formerly the Associate Program Director at Project 2061, a long-term science literacy initiative of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). 

Dr. Molina has conducted a seminar for UP NISMED academic staff on learning progressions, quite an important input to the Institute since it has been commissioned by the Department of Education to develop the learning materials for the Grades 7 and 8 Science of the K to 12 curriculum. The curriculum, as it is very well known by now, features spiral progression of topics across the grades.

Dr. Molina proposes the effective teaching of important ideas in science through a suite of transformative tools centered on learning progressions in science and mathematics education particularly digital tools and resources essential in lifelong learning and critical thinking. He does this through seminar-workshops for teachers.
A Science Lesson and a School Reform

The purpose of this talk is to introduce a school reform trial in Fukui, Japan. At first, a science lesson for grade 7 developed by a classroom teacher was introduced. It was of inquiry type based on students’ observation of poa annuals growing on the school ground. And then, the school reform trial was introduced which yielded the development of such a curriculum and the struggle of the Department of Professional Development of Teachers, University of Fukui which is supporting such reforms.
Yutaka Saburi
Faculty of Education and Regional Studies
University of Fukui Japan

Dr. Yutaka Saburi is a professor at theFaculty of Education and Regional Studies, University of Fukui. He is a mathematician and a mathematics educator. He studied mathematics at the Graduate School of Sophia
University in Tokyo. For about 20 years, he has served as an academic staff at Chiba Junior College. It was after he obtained his doctoral degree on the field of harmonic analysis on homogenous spaces about 15 years ago that he became interested in mathematics
education. He learned two philosophies in mathematics education. First, mathematics education should be based on learner’s culture. Mathematics is abstract that makes the learning of mathematics difficult for people. Thus, the learning of mathematics should be put in contexts. Second, if students will be required to use their mathematics knowledge and skills in the future, they should build up their learning of mathematics by themselves. In this case, inquiry-based learning is appropriate.

Dr. Saburi works as a collaborative researcher at the Department of Professional Development of Teachers. In their struggle to support school reform centered on lesson reform, he learned
the importance of building up school culture to make it an inquiring community.

Developing Mathematical Thinking: How to Develop it in the Classroom

Developing mathematical thinking is one of the major aims of mathematics education. There are a number of researches which describe what it is and how we can observe it. However, teachers have difficulties to develop it in the classrooms. This lecture will consider the way to develop it in the classroom through an example of problem solving.
Masami Isoda
Graduate School
of Comprehensive
Human Science
University of Tsukuba

Dr. Masami Isoda is an Associate Professor of Mathematics Education at the Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Science, University of Tsukuba, Japan. At the same time, he is a researcher at the Center for Research on International Cooperation in Education Development at the University of Tsukuba where he has been involved as project overseer of the Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Lesson Study Project.

Dr. Isoda obtained his Doctor of Philosophy in Education at Waseda University, Japan and his Honorary Ph.D. in Mathematics Education at Khon Kaen University, Thailand. Currently, he is the Chief Editor of the Journal of the Japan Society of Mathematical Education and
the Director for International Relationship of the Japan Mathematics Education Society. In 2010, he was awarded the Best Book of the Year 2009 in the Area of Natural Science by the Japan Association of Publishers. His
research interests include early technology tools in mathematics classes, historical sources of classroom practices and Japanese lesson study in mathematics with opportunities of
international publications in highly educational and scientific journals worldwide.