The Philippine Embassy in Madrid, in coordination with the San Cristobal Nursery and Primary School (CEIP) in Madrid, held its first-ever Ciclo Laro Tayo! – Es Más Divertido en Filipinas cultural program on 18 June 2019 at the school’s grounds. Around 75 children, aged nine to eleven, and a few of the teachers, participated in the activities.
Vice Consul and Cultural Officer Raisa Mabayo introduced the traditional kadang-kadang race, while Vice Consul Mikhal de Dios demonstrated the Philippine national martial arts arnis to the attendees. The children, aged 9 to 11, were also shown how to play patintero and to sing Bahay Kubo in Tagalog and in Spanish using photos of vegetables, some of which bear near-identical names in the two languages.
The activities, which were met with massive enthusiasm from the young audience, helped promote the children’s familiarity with the Filipino language, Philippine history and culture. It also encouraged them to be more receptive of multiculturality, especially considering the significant Filipino presence in Spain.
In April 2019, the school had come up with the initiative to present their own Spanish version of the Masskara Festival celebration. A Filipino teaching assistant at the school has been instrumental in introducing Philippine culture to the school, adding that the programs have been particularly impactful for young Filipino students in the school who were pleasantly surprised to see their own culture celebrated by their classmates and teachers.