The Philippine Traditional Games and Pastimes is a new course in the Department of Indo-Pacific Languages and Literatures at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UHM). It focuses on the socio-cultural and linguistic aspects of traditional games and pastimes. The course was designed as a result of the survey I conducted in Fall 2016 to the students of Intermediate Filipino. The survey aimed at knowing the students’ feedback on the integration of Philippine traditional games in their study of Filipino language and culture. It consisted of six questions related to vocabulary building, sentence construction, giving and following instructions, understanding Filipino beliefs and practices, values development, and cultural appreciation. The findings showed a highly positive response from most students. Since then, the Philippine traditional games have become a valuable lesson and classroom activities in my Intermediate Filipino classes every semester.
Starting Spring 2020, UHM will offer Philippine traditional games and pastimes not only as part of the lessons in Intermediate Filipino but as a three-credit course. It is hopeful that many students from different programs will be attracted to join in this class. The course has Writing and Oral Focus designations, which satisfies the students’ course requirements. Learning games from other cultures is fun and exciting way to explore the world. And lastly, it will provide great opportunities to learn the Filipino language and culture as well as the language and cultures of other Asian or Western countries.