AT High & Launchpad Block Four 2022

What: Block Four of Abot Tala’s Self-Directed and Interest-Led Learning Program
When: January 10-March 5, 2022
Where: Abot Tala’s Slack Workspace, Zoom Rooms, and Gather Town
Who: Young people, ages 12-22 who would like to be part of an interest-led learning community. We welcome teen homeschoolers, unschoolers, and those who are taking a break or gap year, especially during this global pandemic.

Note: Before classes officially start, new members may want to get to know our mentors and some community members from January 5-8.


Our teens get to choose and join the classes they’d like to be part of based on their interests and curiosity. They have the freedom to design their personal schedule around the classes they’ve chosen, so they’d also have time to collaborate with other teens and work on their passion projects and homeschool requirements (if they have a homeschool provider). When they join our classes they won’t be graded. The motivation to be part of a class is purely to learn and not to earn grades.

Each teen is also paired up with a staff mentor for one-on-one sessions where they get to talk about how their classes and activities are going, what keeps them busy, what projects they’re working on, whatever direction they wish to take, and more.

Teens and young adults may choose to join the Launchpad program. The minimum age to join is 16 if the teen has been with Abot Tala High for at least one block, and 17 for new members. This is a specialized program wherein members will have access to portfolio, apprenticeship, and business start-up mentors. Launchpad aims to support young people as they develop future-proof skills, connect to a thriving network of professionals, and take on real-life passion projects. However, if you feel that your teen is ready for the Launchpad program and is not yet 16 or 17, please let us know so we may discuss it.



Please note that all of the programs include the following as well: 

  • 4 weekly mentor-led community events (Community Huddle, Puzzles, Mysteries, and Riddles, Game Show Hour, and Career Explorations)
  • Mentor-led clubs (Debate Club, Chess Club, Abot Tala Radio, Musician’s Circle, Writer’s Guild, Knitting Club)
  • Freedom Fridays (teen-led classes & activities)
  • Online learning resources

For those who are part of the Launchpad program:

Portfolio Mentoring: additional 1,000 per month per mentor
Apprenticeship Mentoring: additional 1,000 per month per mentor
Business Start-up Mentoring: additional 1,000 per month per mentor


  1. If you have any questions or clarifications about the program, you may email us at or
  2. Once you’re ready to sign-up, click here and fill up our sign-up form.
  3. Expect an email to confirm your registration.
  4. Family meeting (for new members only)
  5. An invitation to our Slack workspace will be sent to your teen so they can start to get to know the community through the non-class channels.
  6. Expect your invoice and our bank details via email.
  7. Once payment has been made (via online transfer or Paypal), please email our billing address a copy of your proof payment.
  8. After we’ve received a copy of your proof of payment, we will add your teen to his/her class channels on Slack.



Community Huddle with Abot Tala Staff Mentors
The only hour in the week where all of our teens are in one place! During huddles we have activities, both mentor and teen-led, to help us get to know each other better. We also get to talk about community updates, as well as questions and issues they may have about the program. This is also when we consult the teens about certain decisions we make for the community. The huddle is open to all block 4 members of Abot Tala.

Community Huddle alternates weekly with Puzzles, Mysteries, and Riddles.

Puzzles, Mysteries, and Riddles with Abot Tala Staff Mentors
Whether by decoding ciphers, visualizing locations, or calculating your next move, let’s get those neurons working by solving puzzles, mysteries, and riddles! This is open to all block 4 members of Abot Tala.

P.S. I Love You: A Public Speaking Class with Owie dela Cruz
A lot of people hate the thought of public speaking for various reasons. Let’s change that! Learn to be comfortable with it, enjoy it, and perhaps even fall in love with it! Lessons & activities will be from the Public Speaking for College & Career book for Wayne County Community College by McGrawHill Learning Solutions.
*Please note that because of the nature of this class, it will be held on Abot Tala’s virtual space on Gather.

Math Gym B (Arithmetic, Pre-Algebra) with Ericho Fuentes
This math class covers pre-algebra topics such as integers, fractions, percentages, and basic geometry. The objective of this course is to equip the learners with basic, practical mathematics knowledge that will prepare them for real-life applications and higher mathematics. This course will be administered asynchronously while utilizing online resources from Khan Academy and Tutorials in Taglish to address the varied learning paces and levels of the members of the class.

*Please note that Math Gym B and P.S. I Love You happen simultaneously. If the learner is interested in both classes, they’ll have to choose between the two.

Learning Historians with Nat Sundiang
History isn’t just being aware of events from the past. Perhaps even more significant is how we choose to reflect upon past narratives. In this crash course, students will learn how to better interpret world history not only as a social science, but also as part of the humanities; as it can aid us to better make sense of the world, and in turn, our part in shaping it.

The Natural Sciences with Ericho Fuentes
This is an interdisciplinary course that aims to explore natural phenomena from the point of view of the different natural sciences, namely physics, chemistry, biology, geology, and astronomy. The course will be tailored to the interests and needs of the learners and may require independent learning from the learners once in a while in the form of written homework, readings, and very easy experiments.

Unscripted with Joyce Buen and Nat Sundiang
Most of our experiences in life are completely unscripted. This class is full of activities and lessons that will help prepare you for those moments! Every week, we will explore different lessons from the art of improv mixed with public speaking and personality development to make unscripted moments a lot more fun! Yes? Yes, and!

How to Start a Business: Entrepreneurship 101 with Cindy Wong
Starting a business? This course is for you! We’ll cover business concepts, business tools, systems, branding, marketing, financing and finally launching your business.

Digital drawing of a Launchpad class and its members by Bia Molina.


Filipino Sign Language (FSL) with Pauline & Cristina Guanzon
Learn basic or advanced FSL in 8 sessions. This class is English-based (not Tagalog), and is largely based on ASL just with some localization to Filipino culture.

How to Adult (with Money) with Ailene Molina
Adulting, like Mondays, often gets a bad rep as being the bad guy in our daily lives. But what if it’s possible to get some preemptive advice from real-life failures so you don’t fall into the crippling cycle of despair around adulting? What if adulting and money are actually tools you can wield to get the best life? 

*Please note that FSL & How to Adult (with Money) happen simultaneously. If the learner is interested in both classes, they’ll have to choose between the two.

Balarila: Pagbasa at Pagsulat sa Wikang Filipino kasama si Icia Encinas
Gusto mo bang matutong magsulat sa Filipino pero hindi ka sigurado kung paano ginagamit ang NG at NANG? Gusto mo bang matutong magsulat gamit ang mas malawak na kaalaman sa bokabularyong Filipino? Ito na ang hinihintay mo! Isang kursong nakalaan sa pagsanay sa pagbasa, pagsulat, at pagsalita ng wikang Filipino. Ang kursong ito ay para sa mga kabataang nais hasain ang kanilang kaalaman at pagyamanin lalo ang kanilang kaalaman sa wikang Filipino. Layunin ng kurso ang pagpapalaganap ng pagmamahal at pagpapaunlad ng sariling wika.

Game Coding with Jolo Simeon
This class aims to teach basic game development and programming concepts by creating simple games. The students will be learning how to use Scratch, a block-based visual programming language developed by the MIT Media Lab.

Street Smart: Grow as you Go with James Camacho
Truly there are many paths to learning and success, in school, business, and life in general. We can gain information, design theories, run all our calculations but in the end, we have to go out and walk the wilderness that life has set before us. Understanding and enjoying the valleys and mountains of life is how we can experience growth in all aspects of our life. 

*Please note that Game Coding & Street Smart happen simultaneously. If the learner is interested in both classes, they’ll have to choose between the two.

Sketchbook Sessions with Diane Gabriel
Spend the afternoon using your sketchbook (digital or traditional!) to explore your ideas, open up conversations on topics of interest, and learn different drawing techniques as a way of expressing thoughts and emotions

Video Editing with Ariel Ignacio
Level up your editing skills and techniques while developing your aesthetic and creative eye. The class is recommended for those who plan to edit for content creators, or for those who want to learn how to edit their own content.
Note: Software to be used is Adobe Premier Pro

Abot Tala High Block Three 2021


Computer Programming: Build Your Own Website & More! with Karen Matala
Have you always wanted to learn how to build your own website from scratch? Learn about HTML, CSS, and more!

Always Sometimes Monsters: A Class on Mental Health Disorders with Mar Beatrize
At one point or another, we’ve asked the question, “What’s wrong with me?” and maybe hated ourselves for our quirks, our nuances, for the things that in our eyes make us monsters. But the truth is: we’re always sometimes monsters. It’s a matter of figuring out our tendencies, our patterns, and our lifestyles, and using that information to combat the demons in our heads. In this class, YOU will pick which mental disorders you WANT to discuss and talk about the various ways we can put those mental disorders’ monsters at bay. (Students will also have the option to schedule a consultation, or kuwentuhan session, with Ate Mar about insights they don’t feel comfortable sharing with the class. Kuwentuhan session slots will be open every Friday night)

Math Gym A and A+ (Algebra, Geometry, Pre-calculus) with Ericho Fuentes
This class covers algebra, geometry, and precalculus. This course will be administered asynchronously while utilizing online resources from Khan Academy and Tutorials in Taglish to address the varied learning paces and levels of the members of the class. This course is recommended for teens who are considering a career in science, engineering, and finance.

Me, but Better: College Survival Guide with Joyce Buen
Thinking about college already? Join this class to know more about the realities of college apps, options, lifestyle, and more! Know how you can be prepared, be excited, and be better for college!
*Please note that this class will only run for the first 4 weeks of the block.

Kinder Joyce with Joyce Buen
Have you ever had a piece of candy with a surprise center? Well, this class is exactly that! Join me for an hour of conversation, lessons, and all-around fun. No use asking what the class is about because the only way to find out is to show up! But don’t worry because some of the best things in life are those you don’t expect. I mean, life is full of surprises, so you might as well get used to it!
healthy ways of being productive!
*Please note that this class will only run for the last 4 weeks of the block.

True Colors: Dealing with Difficult People with Mich Alagao
Learn about how to set boundaries, manage expectations, and keep stress to a minimum when dealing with challenging people.

TITAym and Relationships 102 with Owie dela Cruz
This is an exclusive class for Launchpad members.
Every other week our Launchpad members get to spend time with everyone’s tita (aunt), Tita Owie. Conversations can be about anything the teens want to talk about — life, relationships, teen-life, dreams, community-related topics, and more.

This was when we asked current Launchpad members what they wanted to learn.


Hangeul, Hangugeo, Hallyu: An Introduction to the Korean Language and Culture with Megan Perez
This course covers the basics of the Korean language – from the alphabet, reading and pronunciation rules, daily-life phrases, to basic sentence construction. This class also aims to give the learners a deeper look into Korean culture. By the end of the course, teens will not only be able to read/write/count and introduce themselves in Korean, but will also have a better understanding of the culture (especially the Korean Wave!).

The Plot Thickens: Fiction Writing Class with Icia Encinas
This is a creative writing workshop course for young writers. Teens have the option to choose whether to write their output in Filipino, English, or both! They will learn how to write different types of fiction and are encouraged to develop their own style of storytelling. Lessons will also include reading various works from classic short stories to more modern-day works of fiction.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly with Mich Alagao
Teens explore ideas from criminology, philosophy, and ethics and try to see how these ideas relate to our everyday lives. Critical thinking and reflection on complex issues will be encouraged. Class is recommended for older teens.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly alternates weekly with What Would You Do?

Relationships 101 with Owie dela Cruz 
Learn more about how to navigate through personal relationships. This class will talk about teens’ questions about relationships. We believe that it’s better to talk about it openly so that they can get the guidance they want and need. Throughout the class, they’ll also meet different guests who will share their stories and nuggets of wisdom about relationships.

Mic Test…..1,2,3: Content Creation with Gabe Gabriel
Do you want to start your own podcast or a radio show but don’t know where to start? Create content you’ve always wanted to have and air it on Abot Tala Radio!

Game Show Hour with Ericho Fuentes
History, Science, Art, Movies, and anything under the sun, really. Lead your team to victory in the weekly Game Show Hour — our version of your typical Quiz Night! Game Show Hour is open to all block 2 members of Abot Tala.

Connecting with Your Creative Voice with Tanya Aritao
We are all creative. As we get older and go through school and other experiences, sometimes our creative voice can drown, weaken, or feel lost.

In this class, we will jump into exercises and challenges that spur creativity and self-discovery. The course combines live creative ‘studio’ work with independent exploration beyond the group sessions. 

You will leave this course with a deeper understanding of your creative voice and how to use it to ground and strengthen your work in any industry, “creative” or not. 

(You may choose your primary creative medium and build your portfolio during the course.) 

Our community’s Halloween party!

It’s our way of making sure that there’s one day a week that’s fully available to all of our members so we can build a stronger community of self-directed learners. These classes and activities are mostly teen-led. They can also hold their club meeting and watch parties on this day. It’s their day, their rules.

One of our teen-led sessions. Hooray for teens who rock!


Glow Up with Jasmine Mendiola
In this course, the students will learn the basics about skincare, haircare, and makeup application that bring out the best version of themselves and can wear during important online or in-person presentations. They’ll learn about their skin type, hair type and understand their body types, as well as what products match or suit them best. They’ll know the proper way of dressing for different functions and occasions to make a great and lasting first impression. Each student will gain a personal understanding of the science of their skin, their unique facial and body features, and how to best style their hair or enhance their confidence through proper dressing, self-care and ultimately, love who they are and glow from inside out.
Please note that this class starts on February 12 and has 4 sessions. Each class is 1.5 hours long and is counted as 1 class (not a half class).

Creative Art with James Camacho
This course offers instruction in basic art fundamentals as applied to any type of artwork and the creative art concepts; will help students understand their artistic gift to create and channel conceptual thinking; master skills connected to the basic elements of art.

Career Explorations with Mich Alagao
Join us each week as we talk to someone from a different field or industry, and learn about what they really do at work. This is a weekly event open to the whole community (and is not part of the class list).

Get it done! Project Management 101 with Hanna Guison Fernandez
Launching your own YouTube channel? Applying for jobs? Planning a party? What do all these have in common? For all of these to go smoothly, proper planning and resource management are required. Working on seemingly regular “tasks” actually requires proper project management skills.

This course will provide students with an introduction to the project management framework. At the end of the sessions, students will have learned the basic processes, competencies and tools needed to ensure smooth project execution.

Career Bootcamp with Donna Patricia Manio
This class will explore the four pillars that you need for a strong start in your career, whatever your field:

  • Written and verbal communication
  • Presentations and Negotiations
  • Professional Branding
  • Culture and Etiquette

Voice Acting and Storytelling with Trish Cabral
Do you want to learn how to do voice acting and dubbing? Then this class is for you!  Learn from someone who currently works with several post-production houses to provide the character voices for actors for various soap operas in Tagalog, Spanish, Korean, and Portuguese that are dubbed into English for export.  

To read about our mentors, click here.

For more photos of our past activities, visit our Instagram account here: and

For more information or to set an appointment for an online family meeting with us, send an email to or or call/send a message to 0915-2864494. 

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