Activity 3


egg hatching

The egg-hatching process is a good example on how one can understand what development is. The shell starts to break at a proper time, when the chick has fully developed inside the egg and has enough strength to crack it from within.

If someone tries to break it from the outside, especially before the proper time, there is a good likelihood that the underdeveloped chick would die. Science, however, can offer support to help in the development of the chick. For instance, incubation of the eggs has been a common practice to aid the process.

Such is the nature of development – it does not happen in a snap. Rather, those who are involved need to develop for a period of time, which would allow them to be strong enough to push for the change that they want to happen. But this does not mean that assistance could not be provided to them. However, one must be careful in providing “assistance” to the development process. While incubation helps the chick to develop within the shell, aiding in the hatching process often lead to the death of the young animal.



Like the egg hatching process, another example of the development process is the transformation of a caterpillar to a butterfly or a moth. In the story, Pepito was given a pupa, with Mang Tomas advising him “not to do anything” on the pupa case.

Curios as he is, Pepito did the exact opposite of what he was advised – he used a pair of scissors to help the moth break out of its pupa shell. The moth, failing to go through an important element of its development process, eventually died.

But is Pepito the only one to blame?

The incident is a good take-off point in the discussion of societal development and how a “change agency” affects the process. If we consider Pepito as the change agency and the moth as the individual or group undergoing a development process, one can easily conclude that having an agent is not necessary in the development process. This is true, to some degree, as process would continue (and may even succeed) if Pepito had not interfered.

However, one must also point out the reality that Pepito, by taking the pupa and keeping it in a jar, has partially contributed to the process. Without such intervention, the moth may have already been eaten by a predator in the forest. This justifies the continuing existence of change agents within our society.

Pepito may have committed a mistake, but it was a mistake that was not entirely his fault. By failing to warn him of the consequence, Mang Tomas should also be held responsible for what happened. One can argue that failure is part of the education process. However, if death is to be the consequence of such failure, how can we justify that?

The process, like the insect trying to get out of its shell using its own strength, is a necessary part of development. Failing to recognize this can result in dire consequences. Development workers, then, should understand the processes involved and limitations of the assistance that they can provide.


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