TEACHER'S GUIDE in Utilizing the DepEd MELCs in All Learning Areas

TEACHER’S GUIDE in Utilizing the DepEd MELCs in All Learning Areas

TEACHER'S GUIDE in Utilizing the DepEd MELCs in All Learning Areas

Here is the Ultimate TEACHER’S GUIDE in Utilizing the DepEd MELCs in All Learning Areas.

DOWNLOAD: Most Essential Learning Competencies by Subject

The Department, through the Bureau of Curriculum Development – Curriculum Standards Development Division in collaboration with the Assessment Curriculum and Technology Research Centre (ACTRC), started working on the identification of essential learning competencies in the middle of 2019 as part of its initiative in reviewing the intended curriculum. Bureau specialists, academic experts and field implementers worked to reach a consensus regarding the criteria to be used and mechanism to adopt in determining these competencies. Initiated by Secretary Leonor Magtolis-Briones, the K to 12 curriculum review is not just meant to fulfill one of the provisions of Republic Act (RA) 105333 to review the curriculum but is her continuing commitment to ensure quality, relevant and liberating education. After the four phases of curriculum review are completed, the Secretary will convene the Curriculum Consultative Committee to present the findings as provided for in Section 6 of the same Republic Act.

The review focused on articulation within and across learning areas which led to the identification of gaps, issues, and concerns across learning areas and grade levels. Moreover, areas for improvement that would enhance the learning engagement, experience and outcomes were recommended.

Results of the review from the workshop series provided an overview of the articulation of learning competencies in each learning area. Specifically, the review covered the following:

  • mapping of the essential and desirable learning competencies within the curriculum;
  • identification of prerequisite knowledge and skills needed to prepare students for essential learning competencies; and
  • analysis of the interconnectedness of prerequisite knowledge and skills among the learning competencies for each subject area.
Essential learning competencies were defined as what the students need, considered indispensable, in the teaching-learning process to building skills to equip learners for subsequent grade levels and consequently, for lifelong learning. On the other hand, desirable learning competencies were defined as what may enhance education but may not be necessary in building foundational skills.
A list of characteristics of essential learning competencies was provided to help participants decide which among the learning competencies are deemed most important.

These characteristics are based on a US-developed competency validation rubric, which is intended to assure that learning competencies can reach the highest level of quality and comparability across schools (New Hampshire Department of Education, 2012); adaptations were made for relevance in the Philippine context.

As the Department anticipates the challenges in employing various schemes in the delivery of the learning standards due to COVID19, the number of the identified essential learning competencies per quarter were further reduced, thus, the term most essential learning competencies (MELCs).

In determining the criteria for the selection of the most essential learning competencies, the Department in consultation with stakeholders , during which the descriptor – ENDURANCE – was considered the primary determining factor. A learning competency is considered enduring if it remains with learners long after a test or unit of study is completed or if it is useful beyond a single test or unit of study. Examples of such learning competencies include research skills, reading comprehension, writing, map reading, and hypothesis testing, which are essential in many professions and in everyday life (Reeves, 2002; Many & Horrell, 2014). The Department then identified the MELCs through the application of these understandings.

Necessary in the above process is the decision whether a learning competency is to be retained, merged, dropped, or rephrased. As a general rule, a learning competency is retained if it satisfies the endurance criterion which greatly contributes to life-long learning and is a pre-requisite skill to the next grade level. On the other hand, two or more learning competencies are merged or clustered if they have the same objective or learning intention; and thus, can be combined into one comprehensive learning competency. In addition, a significant number of learning competencies is removed/dropped due to the following reasons:

  • they are too specific (and the articulation is similar to that of a learning objective)
  • they are deemed appropriate to be introduced in an earlier quarter or grade level or moved to a later quarter or grade level
  • they are recurring
  • they are subsumed in another learning competency.

Finally, a learning competency is rephrased to be more concise.

The content and performance standards are directly lifted from the curriculum guides. Its inclusion is to emphasize that the identification of MELCs is anchored on the prescribed standards and not a departure from the standards-based basic education curriculum. Thus, teachers are encouraged to refer to the 2016 Curriculum Guides in unpacking the MELCs.

All learning areas will still be taken up by the learners in all grade levels, albeit with streamlined competencies. This is to ensure that the learning outcomes are still achieved even in this pandemic. It is noted that, by principle, the time allocated per subject on a daily basis did not change. This means that schools need to consider this aspect in employing various delivery schemes.

Field implementers and private schools are encouraged to contextualize the most essential learning competencies in order to accommodate the varying contexts of learners, teachers, learning environment,and support structures considering both the content and performance standards. It is advantageous for students to learn the concepts and skills in the MELCs through meaningful activities and scenarios relatable to them and within the context of the students’ own environment. The MELCs are implementable as long as the designed activities also teach the procedures and processes on how and when to apply those knowledge and skills in a given context. With these, Filipino learners are guaranteed relevant and quality basic education despite the current health crisis.

The Department of Education, through the Office of the Undersecretary for Curriculum and Instruction, shall gather relevant feedback on a regular basis from all concerned internal and external partners and stakeholders in the implementation of these guidelines in order to further enhance its provisions and findings which will serve as inputs to the ongoing review of the K to 12 curriculum.


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