Sky Is the Limit! Reflections from an MST Student Representative

Contributor: Meliel Malagkit, Grade 10 Math, Science, and Technology walkabout representative

From the start, I’ve always been amazed by the concept of flight. I thought it was all about how cool it could be if I could fly, or at least ride something that can fly, but that day I realized there were more reasons to be amazed of besides that. That day where we witnessed everything that flies, I only expected to see a lot of hot-air balloons since I’ve never seen one up close, but I guess the experience exceeded my expectations.

Anything that flies has science behind it, because in a world governed by gravity, there has to be a basis for how we harness the air as our flying machines source for lift, thrust, drag, and gravity itself as its weight.

Here is one of the several practice airplanes parked on the runway in Clark. This is used to sharpen the flying skills of student-pilots.
Here is one of the several practice airplanes parked on the runway in Clark. This is used to sharpen the flying skills of student-pilots.

Flying to me, in a more figurative manner, is a way to release all the emotions that have been building up inside of me from everyday living. After this experience, I dream of learning how to fly a plane even just for once, for the sake of experience, because other people say that when you fly, there’s a wonderful sense of freedom, weightlessness, and pure joy for living. Just imagine how birds get to do this everyday of their lives?

When you fly, there are no such things as boundaries or borders. The sky is the limit!

Or better yet, When your heart is in your dreams, there are no such things as boundaries or borders. The sky is the limit! A

TAKE OFF! Art Competition Preparation Walkabout to Witness the Wonders of Flight

The Young Artist-Ambassadors Visit the 19th Philippine Hot-Air Balloon Fiesta

Last February 13, the students visited Clark, Pampanga to witness the 19th Philippine Hot-Air Balloon Fiesta. This trip was organized to expose them to air games, which is the overriding theme of Fédération Aéronautique Internationale: YOUNG ARTISTS CONTEST (FAI-YAC). Prof. Mel Silvestre (teaching faculty at the Visual Communications Department of the University of the Philippines College of Fine Arts) accompanied us throughout the trip. He also shared his deep interest in airplanes in an Aviation Art Workshop. Having greater understanding of the competition theme excited us even more.

The group departed from school early morning to catch the launching of the hot-air balloons. The students were all excited as they stood on the early morning misty fields awaiting the show. More than 20 hot-air balloons creating a spectrum of colors, shapes, and sizes greeted us. Everyone cheered as the giant octopus, pink elephant, Vincent Van Gogh, mischievous brown dog, to name some, floated in the sky. It was truly a breathtaking and delightful experience for us all.

The Octopus hot-air balloon from Japan
The Octopus hot-air balloon from Japan

 

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The flying barn with all the farm animals inside took off that morning as well!

 

“For the first time, I saw hot-air balloons, live para-gliders, even people jumping out of a plane and landing with parachutes! They were all in the air!”

-Erin Clemente, Grade 3

The Aviation Art Workshop focused on the basic theory of flight, it also gave the students a chance to get creative with airplanes in a caricature drawing activity. We were blown away by the clarity and depth of knowledge of Prof. Silvestre who imparted his passion with us through engaging demonstrations using no less than actual vintage airplanes on site. We owe this unforgettable experience to Prof. Silvestre who opened this door of opportunity for us, as well as for warmly accommodating the Meridian team during the 19th PIHABF.

Prof. Mel Silvestre happy to usher us into the boundless world aviation. Here he is in front of a vintage airplane with the Grade 2 students and Teacher Nemcy Cruz.
Prof. Mel Silvestre was more than happy to usher us into the boundless world of aviation. Here he is in front of a vintage airplane with the Grade 2 students and Teacher Nemcy Cruz.

 

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Prof. Mel also gave encouraging words and helpful feedback as a way of mentoring the students for the upcoming FAI-YAC competition.

“I got pretty cool facts and information about airplanes from Prof. Mel Silvestre. How it works, how it flies, and many more. I really liked how he is an artists himself who designs, draws, and models airplanes. I found it inspiring that Prof. Mel was able to carve out a path merging his passion for both art and aeronautics.”

-Abigail Nolasco, Grade 8

The students then explored the fly market, where all sorts of colorful and portable flying toys could be found. The students ended the day flying kites together, while others created and popped humongous bubbles. Laughter was our soundtrack for the day. The teachers looked up in the sky with the biggest smiles as they shared in the joy of the students.

“The walkabout was unforgettable because I made new friends and flew a kite.”

-Lana Oasis Ruiz, Grade 1

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Colorful kites dotted the blue skies that day. Experiencing the joy of kite-flying was one of the highlights of the trip for most students.

“My High School student self found it hard to go down to a kid’s eye level. That Friday, it felt so good to be a kid again. I became so stubborn that I didn’t allow my headache to prevent me from running to fly a kite. Naughty in a way that when I rode one plane I told my brother to record me and I just started acting like I was in a battle and did all those weird sound effects: launching, flying, swirling, falling, as well as gibberish language pilots would say. The PIHABF walkabout experience did show me things I’ve been missing out on and things I’ve been losing. It somehow helped me revive them  — all the wonder and playfulness. For that I’m truly grateful.”

-Winona Ortega, Grade 10

After a long day, the group came back physically spent, but full, refreshed, and recharged inside. It marked the perfect time to create, and let that piece of paper catch the outburst of joy and inspiration we all gained from the walkabout. A

Meridian Joins the 2015 Young Artists Contest

We are thrilled to share with you in this special edition of our school newsletter our students’ journey as “artsist-ambassadors.”

Early this year, Meridian SA was given the opportunity to join the 2015 Fédération Aéronautique Internationale: YOUNG ARTISTS CONTEST (FAI-YAC). 35 Grade School and High School students bravely took the challenge. Their artwork entries were submitted for the preliminary eliminations last March 4, 2015. Nine qualifying artworks will be sent to the FAI headquarters in Switzerland to be viewed by an international jury.

We have seen the student participants step up the past months. They did the tedious work involved in a creative endeavor — they researched, made design studies, and planned for their entries. It is true that in any competition, winning is not the end goal, it is the lessons from the “uphill climb,” the very core of the competition, that we remember most.

“Regardless of the competition results, this experience has helped me grow as an artist. I will always cherish this unforgettable experience.”

-Joshua Nibre, Grade 9

Our only hope is for this competition to challenge our students to confidently pursue their interests inside and outside the classroom. More importantly, we hope that this year’s FAI-YAC would inspire our young “artist-ambassadors” to anchor that creative interest on a larger purpose — that to refresh, inspire, and uplift our community and country as well. The arts.

“This competition has taught me that once you’ve created something, you should own it like it belongs to you, your FAMILY, and your RACE. All my artworks should bear that signature.”

-Heirez Chavez, Grade 7

We warmly invite you to read on and share this journey with us!

(FAI-YAC results will be released last quarter of this year. We will keep you posted.) A

2015 ASIAN ENGLISH OLYMPICS

An Open Letter

 

Dear Meridian Family,

From the bottom of our hearts, the entire high school team – most especially the Asian English Olympics participants and training team – would like to express our heartfelt gratitude to all of you for your support and for keeping us in prayer throughout the Asian English Olympics at Binus University in Jakarta, Indonesia from Feb. 9-16, 2015.
The event was a very fitting learning experience for the students. They were able to interact and establish connections with their Asian peers as delegates from Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Macau, and Singapore also participated with much gusto and determination. The students gave everything they’ve got. They were fully aware that they were not only representing themselves and their families, but they were ambassadors of the Meridian and the Philippines as well. It was indeed a very enriching experience for all of us who went there.
One of our Gr. 11 student led the Meridian contingent as he won 3rd place honors in the Storytelling competition. Grade 10 student Meridian representative was also awarded the Best High School Participant for scrabble while another Gr. 11 student representative made it all the way to the grand finals in the spelling bee competition – finishing in the Top 5.
Our speech contestants also showed a lot of promise and potential. Most of their colleagues in the competition were already university students and were also seasoned AEO participants.
The event was also an excellent training ground and international exposure for our debate team. Though our debate team and the Meridian students themselves were relatively quite young compared to the other participants, it was very encouraging to see them debate well ahead of their years.
Nevertheless, I feel that the real treasure in their participation in the AEO lies in their daily experiences while competing – the friendships that they established, their teamwork, and how each contestant gave it their all.
It was also a very maturing experience for them.
I saw how one Grade 11 student participant  would mentor his fellow debater from Grade 9. We know that team dynamics is very important in any debate competition. Debate partners should work well together. Their debating skills and frame of mind should complement one another. His tandem with the relatively younger and novice Grade 9 student was something that has not been tested thoroughly. During their debate matches, it was quite obvious that their tandem was being put to the test. During breaks, the younger debater was very pressured to keep up with the more experienced and older debater and was always apologetic (not always necessary as she was quite good actually) to her older debate partner. Nonetheless, the older participant would always encourage her. There was a clear desire for the older participant to also see the younger participant grow and find her groove in the competition. There were times na “sinasalo niya na talaga ” but he remained collected and very brotherly. The situation called for him to mentor and he was very patient and encouraging. The Grade 9 student participant, on the other hand, was very teachable and moldable. Nakakatuwa po ang dynamics nila kasi parang kuya and bunso ang dating. :-)
Our Meridian representative, another  Grade 11, prominent placing in the Storytelling competition I believe was something that God ordained to honor him and his family’s journey to make him participate in Jakarta. His genuine determination to join and bring honor to his school and country was something that his family supported all the way – albeit resources were quite limited. I am personally very happy for him, who has grown to become a very responsible and diligent student and a unique leader as well.
Another Grade 11 Meridian student touched everyone in his preliminary piece in the speech competition. He spoke about the “gifts of death” – a very personal tribute to his late mother.
When another Grade 11 student found out that she qualified in the grand finals for spelling, she could not believe it! She has always been one of our top students, but when asked as to why she think she made it, she humbly replied, “Nag-prepare naman po ako but so did the other competitors. They were very good. Lord na lang po siguro talaga yun.”
Two Gr. 8 students were really “Davids” in a lake of “Goliaths”. They competed with college students and debated on topics that were well beyond their age. But among the Meridian team participants, they were probably the most courageous. I’m very excited for them 2-3 years from now. :-)
In the end, and though not all of them won awards, our Meridian students now have a much firmer resolve to do better in their respective fields. Because of the support of their teachers, families, and the Meridian community, they were not discouraged. They only want to be better. The fire in their hearts are still very much aflame.
All in all, the event was a rewarding experience for all us who were there – students and teachers alike. It was Meridian High School’s first foray in international competitions. God is indeed gracious that He allowed the school to finish prominently – as we were in the Top 5 when all the points in all the competitions were accumulated.
We continue to pray that God may use every competition not only as a learning opportunity for the students but also as bricks that would eventually enable them to build a great wall for their country. They are not perfect students. They will never be perfect. But the fight to win in competitions like this and in life in general for God and country is something that is very much alive in their hearts. Someday, I believe that God will honor this fire in their hearts.
Thank you very much an God bless.
T. Vincent

Intramurals 2015: Exceed Expectations

                        intrams12intrams

 This year’s intramural sport activity entitled, Exceed Expectations aimed to refresh the mind and strengthen the body and lift the spirit of our students. It was an opportunity for the each one to harness their physical abilities and apply the values of discipline, perseverance and teamwork.

The opening of the Intramural Sports Event last February 21, 2015 was held at the University of Makati Track and Field Oval.  Other sporting events were held at Amoranto Badminton court and Celebrity Sports plaza last February 23 and 24, 2015.

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The awarding ceremony was held at the Meridian Elevated Playground last March 6, 2015. There were four teams that competed; Yellow Chimera, Blue Hydra, Green Bakunawa and Red Garuda. The teams that EXCEEDED THE EXPECTATIONS and got the over all champion award were the RED GARUDA for grade school and GREEN BAKUNAWA for high school.

In case you missed this very exciting event, here are some photos that were taken and  posted during the event through instagram and facebook, also photos that were taken by our volunteer photographer.  

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The HS Green Bakunawa won the overall champion of the Meridian Intramurals 2015!        ‘Til next intramurals Aguileons.

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Meridian Intramurals 2015Exceed Expectations Awarding Ceremony

Loud cheer, competitive spirit and individuals who exceeded their expectations. That’s what we have right now in the campus. Students cheering and shouting at the top of their lungs everytime a Teacher announces a winner.
What an exciting intramurals we had. Join us again next year.

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Repost from @spittersplatter via @igrepost_app, football all day field day
to run freely like a child & share laughter with friends close as kin life is beautiful

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Repost from @davidjpendon via @igrepost_app, Meridian Intramurals twentyfifteen:))) hehehe! #meridiansa #UMAK #meridianintramurals2015 #exceedexpectations #instalikes #tagsforlikes #picoftheday #photooftheday

It’s a date! FAMILY Date!

IT’s A DATE

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It was a fun filled cultural fair celebrating favourite local childhood games and snacks for the whole family! The whole Meridian Community enjoyed the hands-on activities with the friendly curators as they demonstrated their passions.  

Here are some of the exciting snapshots on that day . . .

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airport

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music kkk

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artwork

 

 

 

 

BURST Art Festival 2014

It was indeed an explosion of creativity for the whole family. Artworks made by students were a hit to the parents and the whole Meridian Community. 

In case you missed the event, keep scrolling to see photos of colorful and creative artworks and activities.

 

 

 

 

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WHAT’S INSIDE?!

                                            An overview f what to expect during the BURST Festival.                                  This welcome board was made by Grade 7 students led by Danielle Caguioa! Great job guys!

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Pawikan and Haribon feeling soary and swimmy today! These wonderful creatures were made by the Grade 9 students. Photo by Teacher Bon Estrada

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                                               The Grades 8 and 10 wall was quite magnetic!!!                                                 This area overflowed with fun and youthful flair!

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ChALk aRT
                               WAAAAH yeyyy doodle everywhere!  Grafitti wall prepared by Grade9!                                       Awesome creativity starter!!! Here’s Andrei and Joshua doodling on the wall.                     Photo by Teacher Bon Estrada

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Pilipinas Noon at Ngayon
                                                         A collective art by the Grade 5 students.                                                                         Also in the photo are Abigail and Hannah, both Grade 8 doing chalk art.                            Photo by Teacher Bon Estrada

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Meridian HS is KAPP CUP’s Overall Champion

KAPP CUP 2015: A Social Science and Philosophy lecture series and tournament for high school students

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How did the event come about?

The UP Bukluran sa Sikolohiyang Pilipino or UP Buklod-Isip is an academic organization of psychology students in UP Diliman. Upon coming up with the event, their main objective is to promote Sikolohiyang Pilipino (SP), which advocates a psychology that is reflective of the Filipino psyche and truly responds to their needs and interests.

In the interest of promoting the social sciences of which Sikolohiyang Pilipino is a part, they held the first-ever KAPP Cup last January 24 & 26, 2015 at Palma Hall, UP Diliman. It’s the team’s hope that the KAPP Cup (from Kolehiyo ng Agham Panlipunan at Pilosopiya) would allow high school students gain new knowledge from short talks on the multiple disciplines under Social Sciences and Philosophy i.e. Anthropology, Geography, History, Linguistics, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology) and would showcase’ as well these students skills and talents in a tournament involving debate, quiz bee, extemporaneous speaking, photojournalism, and essay writing.

Who were the participating schools and institutions?

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About a hundred public and private high school students competed in this event. The participating schools include (1) Ateneo High School, (2) Manila Science High School, (3) Divine Grace School, (4) Our Lord’s Grace Montessori School, (5) St. Scholastica’s Academy Marikina, (6) People of Grace Christian School, and (7) Meridian International Learning Experience.

From Meridian, the students who participated were the following:

1. Debate

– Samantha Abbygayle Viliran (Grade 11 Yunus)

– David Ezekiel Asuncion (Grade 11 Yunus)

– Maria Christina Silvestre (Grade 11 Yunus)

2. Extemporaneous Speaking

– Samuel Carlos (Grade 11 Yunus)

3. Essay Writing

– Beatrice Grace Berida (Grade 11 Yunus)

4. Quiz Bee

– Bernadette Calica (Grade 11 Yunus)

– Luis Rafael Moreno (Grade 11 Tata)

– Jeredan Tunac (Grade 10 Lee Kuan Yew)

5. Photojournalism

– Mark Kyle Cortez ( Grade 10 Manmohan Singh)

 

Recognition and Awarding

The KAPP Cup is awarded to the school which garners the highest number of points from their students’ performance in the tournament.

– The Meridian International Learning Experience (Meridian) was the overall championed of this year’s KAPP Cup, followed by Manila Science High School (MaSci) and Ateneo de Manila High School (AHS). – Jeredan Tunac, Bernadette Calica and Luis Rafael Moreno (Meridian) dominated the Quiz Bee. Odlanyer Ramirez, Hazel Esmama, and Jolene Valenzuela (MaSci) came in second, and Reimart Sarmiento, Lois Corliss Rivera, and Joan Ellaine Rubio fromThe Lord of Grace Christian School (LGCS) placed third. – Raphael Ramiro, Leo Isaiah Yap III, and Cesar Tomas Solis (AHS) won against Samantha Viliran, David Ezekiel Asuncion, and Maria Christina Silvestre (Meridian) as they debated on the motion “THW require elected government officials and their families to use only public utilities and services” in the finals. – Samuel Carlos (Meridian) placed first in the extemporaneous speech competition, with Lyanne Iris Erlano (MaSci) at second place and Lorraine Ojimba from Divine Grace School (DGS) at third place. – Angela de la Rama (MaSci) won first place in the essay writing competition, while Beatrice Grace Berida (Meridian) took second place and Charlotte Anne Berbon from St. Scholastica’s Academy Marikina (SSAM) placed third. – Alessa Cube (DGS) took the top spot in the photojournalism competition, followed by David Peralta (LGCS) at second place and Crystal Jean Natividad (MaSci) at third.

Retrieved on February 1 from: http://web.kssp.upd.edu.ph/resources/news-and-events/125-kapp-cup-2015-a-social-science-and-philosophy-lecture-series-and-tournament-for-high-school-students

What was the HS team’s chief goal in participating?

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The Meridian has always recognized and believed in the importance of well-rounded education which underscores opportunities that enhance not only students’ academic course but also their gifting, skills, and passion beyond school requirements. On this note, we understand the role of competition in highlighting learners’ critical thinking, collaboration and social skills, and communication – essential skills in the 21st Century.

The team believes that this is an opportune time to expose the Meridian students to off-campus competitions in which they will be able to develop stronger esteem and disposition in articulating their thoughts with proficiency in communication.

Article Contributor: Camille Peace Adraincem ; Photos from: http://web.kssp.upd.edu.ph/

For more of the stories and photos, you can visit these websites:

http://web.kssp.upd.edu.ph/resources/news-and-events/125-kapp-cup-2015-a-social-science-and-philosophy-lecture-series-and-tournament-for-high-school-students
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.338020446387121.1073741830.311775795678253&type=1

Didn’t we just say how time flies that it’s already 2015 and yet as you are reading this, the first month is already over? Our new year traditions often include making new plans and resolutions by looking forward to all those new possibilities that we can embrace. But perhaps, it would also be nice to look forward by “looking back” to some of the things we used to do more. These are probably things that the changes around us have made to be more challenging for our families lately but are actually worth fighting for. These include but are not limited to committing to family dinner (despite our varying schedules or workloads or the usual rush hour traffic), discovering a new place and in effect letting our children discover some new interests, enjoying some offline, traditional board games at home, or spending a weekend afternoon doing an old family recipe together. We get the picture.

Today, there seems to be more time and more connectivity because of gadgets and technology but we also seem to long for more person-to-person connection and do meaningful things that can truly last especially for our families.

And so from all of us in Meridian to your individual homes, may 2015 be a year of new goals and plans but may it also be one that ushers in more meaningful and deeper connections with our loved ones.

-Directress Elo Quiambao

Meridian Music Fest 2014

Music fest
It was a season to be jolly… laLalaLALAlalaLALA

 

Snapshots of our performers . . . 

It was a day filled with joyful and merry music. A day to remember as the students happily performed for their parents, teachers and friends. Here are snapshots of the performances.

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An energetic song and dance number by the Grade 1 students in the tune of “Kumukutikutitap” 

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A surprising performance  by the Grade 2 students with their unique rendition of “Silent Night”

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  A solemn rendition of the traditional Christmas tune, “O Come All Ye Faithful” by the Grade 3 students

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A feel of Christmas rock ‘n roll with the Grade 4 students’ Jingle Bells Rock!

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The Grade 5 students showing the audience how to mash up traditional and modern Christmas tunes

 

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Some Grade 6 students waiting for their turn to play the song, “Payapang Daigdig” on the angklung

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          The Grade 7 students wowed the audience with their majestic rendition of                “Ring Christmas Bells”