Building a School the Aeta Way

The following pictures tell the story of building a typical Aeta school.  The details are sometimes a little different, but the basic steps are the same:

1Purchasing the timber and other materials.  The materials used depend on the preference of the local community and on what is available locally. Traditional materials that are easy to maintain are chosen wherever possible.  All timber has to be carefully treated to prevent damage by termites.




1-1The base and lower walls are built with hollow blocks made from lahar – a combination of pumice, ash and sand that covered the whole area after the Mt. Pinatubo eruption.  Cement is added to give additional strength.





Building school (weaving walls)The upper walls are woven by the women of the village – usually from coconut leaves or from cogan grass.





Building school (raising roof)Raising the roof.  In this case the roof is made of corrugated iron sheets.  More traditionally the roof will be made of cogan grass.  This is like thatch with a life span of about 5 years, but is easily repairable.




Building school (walls)Assembling the walls, which are sufficient to keep out the sun and rain but still allow air to circulate ….





Building school (windows)…. and installing the window frames.  Note that there are no glass windows – they use shutters instead.





Judd Hendricks (toilets)Toilets are provided wherever possible. These are usually just a hole in the ground, since there are no sewers and no running water. Also, since water is a scarce resource, most villagers are reluctant to us it to flush toilets.





There is usually no electricity in the areas where the schools are located, so installing electrical fittings is not an issue.