Indigenized Teaching and Learning of Geometry in the Ifugao Context

Ifugao State University
Corresponding author, Diosdado M. Aquino; Email:
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Mathematics as a discipline, as revealed in many studies is generally perceived as
difficult and abstract by learners. One factor among others is the availability of
appropriate, preferably localized, learning materials, which are more relevant and
meaningful to local learners. The Indigenous peoples groups of Ifugao who are
renowned for their extensively terraced rice fields, inscribed as a UNESCO World
Heritage Site, have a distinctive culture from the mainstream Filipinos. As
education is generally designed to hone the youth to cope with global
employment trends, limited effort is devoted to integrate important indigenous
Ifugao subject matters into the curriculum. In spite of its recognized importance,
there is scarcity of instructional materials in the Ifugao context. The resource
materials prescribed by the Department of Education contain lowland settings,
which are usually remote to Ifugao learners. These may affect understanding and
internalization of the topic being learned. This study sought to explore ways of
indigenizing the teaching and learning of Geometry in the Ifugao context. This
project aimed to help mathematics educators and learners improve their
achievements and to strengthen the learners’ cultural identity while becoming
globally competitive. The use of qualitative method including observation,
interviews, documentation and mathematical investigations were employed.
Geometrical practices and tangible heritage resources in the Ifugao communities
were identified, analyzed, and interpreted for integration in the national
Geometry curriculum. Results revealed that vast geometrical concepts are
observable and practiced in the area that are deemed mathematical and related to
geometry concepts. These indigenous practices could be very relevant and
significant (if used properly) in improving the problem solving skills and critical
thinking skills of learners when integrated and used properly during mathematical
instruction that could help make the study of Geometry meaningful and relevant.

Keywords: Geometry, Indigenized/contextualized teaching and learning