Leading child development program in the US opens center in Davao City

Sharing an interesting program that parents may consider in rearing their children and also for those adults wanting to remain fit ….

Leading child development program in the US opens in Davao City
By PrixDigna D. Banzon
DAVAO CITY, Dec. 19 (PNA) — A leading early childhood development program in the USA will open its Davao City center on Monday, December 22, at SM Lanang Premier.

Musikgarten under its local brand name Musikgarten Manila sets up its 6th branch in Davao City and the first in Mindanao.

Two of its branches are located in Quezon City, Laguna, Baguio City and the other one in Tacloban City. The Tacloban branch was put up immediately after the city was hit by Yolanda to help victims especially the children as the company’s way of reaching out to people needing assistance immediately after disaster. With the good reception of the community, Musikgarten then formally opened branches several months after.

Musikgarten, that was brought in the Philippines by operator Michelle Nikki Junia, was the preferred early childhood development program in over 20 countries.


Junia, who is the only licensed operator of Musikgarten in the country, was a music scholar and honor graduate of the UST Conservatory of Music, Bachelor of Music Education, major in voice under the tutelage of Professor Irna Ponce Enrile-Potenciano.

Junia was also trained in the USA on the use of music in early childhood development. She is also the only Filipino trained by Seth riggs, the vocal coach of top vocal performers like Michael Jackson, Barbara Streisand, Josh Groban, Natalie Cole and Kelly Clarkston.

She said at Musikgarten, it makes music as the anchor in the child development and also as a venue for family bonding because early development must be both between the parent and the child.

There is a module that both (parent and child) will follow even at home as learning involves both, she said.

She said Musikgarten offers regular group classes for infants to seven years old, individual music lessons on voice to instruments, musical playhouse, band rehearsal studio with recording facilities. There is also a one on one session for the adult, she added.

Junia said exposing children to music at an early age will have better developing skills even as she said that the listening skills of the child must be developed first and must start at an early age. The activities must be fun and light rather than they be exposed to rigorous activities.

“The listening skills of the child are being developed early or ages below 7 y.o that is why music is the best medium and children can learn at very young age,” she said.

Citing early child development in foreign countries she said children are taught reading at age 7 years old.

We must remember that interest of children will only be about 30 minutes and that they must be allowed to listen to sounds and play instruments and be able to express themselves through music, she said.

The eagerness of children to learn is when they look at learning as fun and interesting, she said.

Music also helps in the development of character and attitude of the child.

Meanwhile, Junia said at the Musikgarten, they also accept senior citizens because music is also a therapy.

It helps people relax especially those diagnosed with hypertension and cardio problem and those suffering from loneliness. This will also help address people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

On the other hand, Junia said Davao is the right place for Musikgarten.

And Davao has oversupply of good talents, she added. (PNA) 


Science Discovery Center excites Dabawenyo kids, teachers

Another first in Davao City is this Science Discovery Center.  The interactive galleries are interesting to explore just like what I experienced abroad.  Surely, both the mature and the young ones are interested to have a personal experience at the SDC. I personally am happy that SM chose Davao over other cities to put up their second Science Discovery Center here.  Based on my interview with an officer of SM, a theme park is also being worked out and I am equally excited to have that here too. Meantime, here’s my story of the newly opened Science Discovery Center …

DAVAO CITY, Oct. 2 (PNA) — Students and teachers of the Davao City schools here were excited with the opening on Tuesday of the Science Discovery Center (SDC) at SM Lanang Premier.


Head of the high school department Luz Josol of the Philippine Nikkei Jin Kai International School (PNJKIS) here, said “the SDC is very relevant because it does not only provide entertainment but better understanding of the things around us. It will really be of great help for our students to better understand their lessons especially on their Science subjects.”

She said the trip to the Science Discovery Center will now be part of their school’s yearly activity and this early we already incorporated this to our school calendar of activities for 2014.

The opening ceremony was graced by Department of Tourism (DOT) regional director Art Boncato, Davao City Tourism Officer Lisette Marques, Museum Dabawenyo director Orly Escarilla, Department of Education, education program supervisor for Science, Marilyn Madrazo, SM”s Family Entertainment Center, Inc. senior vice president Manuel Atacador, SM’s vice president for Mindanao operation Debby A. Go, representatives from Universities and Colleges of Davao City, other officers from government and private offices and the public.

Josol together with some PNJKIS students and teachers were among those who witnessed the opening of the Science Discovery Center here.

“As we do exposure trip for our students this facility is very accessible and timely with ultra modern and latest state of the art technology,” she said.

SM”s Family Entertainment Center, Inc. senior operations manager Arturo C. Carballo said the center that occupies 2,000 square meter also houses the eighty-seater full dome Digital Planetarium that is powered by the world’s most sophisticated and advanced planetarium projector system, the Digistar 5.

He said Davao’s Planetarium has the highest set of projector ever even as he said that the Planetarium alone costs about 700,000 dollars.

The center features 10 interactive galleries which allow guests to learn about Geology, Biology, the Climate, the Body, Energy, Transportation, Technology, and Engineering, and the Future in the most enjoyable and entertaining way.

He said the country’s first interactive science center has always been at the forefront of edu-tainment (education plus entertainment).

He said the owners of SM are firm believers that meaningful experiences and learning occurs when one provides children with an enjoyable atmosphere in an encouraging and interactive environment.

Neizzy Mainit, Grade 7 of PNJKIS and her classmates said they were happy with the opening of SDC in Davao City saying their experience with the interactive galleries are entertaining, exciting, enjoyable and they said they will ask their parents to bring them back to the SDC together with their siblings aside from the scheduled trip that their school will arrange for them.

The Science Discovery Center in Davao is the second that SM built in the country after the first was established at the Mall of Asia in 2007 said Carballero.

He said hey will build their 3rd Science Discovery Center in Jinjiang, China although he said they will also be building a smaller science center in Cebu City.

“Operating a science discovery center is also a form of their corporate social responsibility in line with SM’s dedication to spread world-class “edutainment” for families not only in Davao but the whole of Mindanao,” he said. (PNA)