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The Center for Southeast Asian Studies > Ub-ufok Ad Fiallig Overview > Teaching Modules > Module 1 – Tilag : Valuing Our Roots

Module 1 – Tilag : Valuing Our Roots

Synopsis

High up in the mountains of the Cordilleras, a rainbow named Tilag conceals her identity and chooses to live among the Ifiallig. One day, Tilag appears to a young hunter at the end of a rainbow. Smitten by her beauty, he immediately asks her hand in marriage. Soon Tilag gives birth to their children, but mysterious things started to happen. Tilag also begins to fear losing her husband because of her unusual nature. This story is derived from the narrative of village elder Jerson Ayongchi.


 


LEARNING OBJECTIVES: 

  • Learning about our culture and role of storytelling in different Philippine ethnic groups increase our understanding of ourselves and our integral relationship with our communities.

  • Learning about our personal histories and culture is empowering as it helps us overcome our own stereotypes  about ourselves through understanding the depth of our culture and history.

  • Learning about our culture helps build a sense of cultural pride.

  • Learning about our culture guides us towards a deeper understanding of our ancestral roots.

LESSON 1: IN SEARCH OF HOME

Keywords: Barlig, ancestral home, concept of home, roots, ancestors

BACKGROUND:

Understanding the concept of home is important in our journey of self-discovery. Jose Rizal, the Philippines’ national hero, once said, Ang hindi marunong lumingon sa kanilang pinanggalingan ay hindi makararating sa kanilang paroroonan. Those who do not know how to look back at where they come from will not reach their destination.” Rizal urges us to know our ancestral roots in order to reach our full potential. Do you agree with Rizal? How do you define home? This lesson will help students connect to Barlig through their own reflection of their home.

Library resources on Jose Rizal

PROCEDURE:

Pre-Assessment:

Teachers get to know their students by having them write a poem about their home.

Instructions are found on the following link: Where I’m From”

World Map Activity: Where in the world is my home? 

1. Students locate Barlig, Mountain Province on Google Earth or world map. They can also watch a video of Barlig.

2. Students search for their hometown as well as their ancestral home on Google Earth.

3. Discuss how far they are from Barlig.

4. Students read and watch videos of Barlig (Scroll down to the bottom for more information on Barlig).

Library resources on the indigenous people of the Cordilleras

5. Students compare and contrast their hometown to Barlig.

6. Students discuss Jose Rizal’s quote about home.

7. Ask students why home is important.

Understanding Tilag 

8. Students read and watch Tilag

9. Students imagine Tilag’s home when she was living in the sky as a rainbow.  Why do you think she left her home to live with the Ifiallig?

10. Students Describe Tilag and her courtship with the young hunter.

11. Describe Tilag on a typical day. What does she do while her husband is out hunting?

12. Describe Tilag’s new home.

Additional Questions

  • If you were to rewrite the ending of the story, how would you write it and explain why?

  • What type of moral values do you think the story of Tilag is trying to impart? (Discuss the idea of shame, forgiveness, sense of community, love, parenting and preserving the honor of the family.)

  • How do you think the story reflects our modern values?

  • The Tilag Clan actually exists in Barlig. Possible homework: Look for the Tilag Clan online. Conduct research on the Tilag Clan.

  • Do you have a similar story from your own cultural traditions?

 

CULMINATING ACTIVITY

Have students draw a picture of their home and share with each other. The drawings can be a literal meaning of a “home” or a metaphorical “home” for those who are uncomfortable sharing about their home life.  


A Journey To Barlig, Mountain Province, Philippines 

More importantly, the passing away of influential village elders, the umu-ufok, with no one to take over their role, will inevitably extinguish Barligís orature, and along with this will vanish the beautiful stories that have given honor and value to the life of a people. In an effort to preserve Barlig oral folklore, Pia Arboleda, Professor at the University of Hawai’i, conducted a retrieval and translation project of Ifiallig tales in 2001.