Monthly Archives: November 2015

Panyaden Student at Northern Thai Singing Contest

Panyaden Grade 3 student singing

The Voice Panyaden!

We are proud to announce that Grade 3 student Mina will be representing the school at the singing contest finals of the Northern Thailand Student Art and Handicraft Fair 2015. Mina won the Chiang Mai round of the contest last term and will be heading to Phitsanulok on December 16th for the regional competition. Wish her luck!

Loy Krathong at Panyaden

DSCF5350 Panyaden community at our Loy Krathong 2015 celebrations

Panyaden celebrates Loy Krathong 2015!

The school community came together for this traditional Thai festival, Panyaden-style! We made krathongs together, sang, danced and finally floated them on the school pond. A colourful, family day full of goodwill and smiles.

DSCF5025 Happy students with their handmade krathongs, Panyaden SchoolDSCF5060 Panyaden parent with daughter and krathongDSCF5181 Panyaden student musicians playing during school's Loy Krathong celebrationsDSCF5153 Joyful dance, Loy Krathong celebrations at Panyaden School Chiang Mai

Lots more photos on our blog and on Facebook.

Panyaden Meditation Retreat for Teachers

DSCF5739 Panyaden teachers at meditation retreat in Chiang Rai
Thai teachers spent 5 days at Wat Pa Yen Boon in Chiang Rai on our annual meditation retreat for teachers, led by Venerable Ajahn Jiew. Each dawn began with a misty walk through the rice fields to collect alms offered by the local villagers.

DSCF5750 Morning alms collection, Panyaden meditation retreat for Thai teachers DSCF5800 Panyaden School meditation retreat for Thai teachers DSCF5852 Panyaden School meditation retreat for Thai teachers

See more photo here on our blog.

Loy Krathong 2015 celebrations

Making krathongs at Panyaden School Chiang Mai
Let’s celebrate Loy Krathong 2015!

Parents are warmly invited to make and float krathongs with us this Wednesday, 18 November 2015. We start by making and decorating our krathongs with kindergarten students at 8:30, followed by primary students at 13:10. See you here!

Panyaden’s New Buidling Plans

Scale model of Panayden School's new assembly/indoor sports hall, Chiang Mai

Exciting new building plans for 2016! Here are the plans for a multipurpose assembly and indoor sports hall at Panyaden. Opening in time for the new school year in August 2016.

Design and photos by Chiangmai Life Construction (CLC).

Scale model of Panayden School's new assembly/indoor sports hall, Chiang Mai 2 Scale model of Panayden School's new assembly/indoor sports hall, Chiang Mai 3 Lotus Hall drawings by CHiangmai Life Construction CLC for Panyaden School

Panyaden Teachers’ Workshop

Panyaden School teachers' training workshop
Assessment for learning. On Wednesday 18 November, primary teachers took a close look at creative ways to gather information on students’ progress in order to determine the how they can best move forward in their learning.

Kindergarten teachers went from centre to centre, viewing, reading and discussing new ways to enrich students’ learning environment. In doing so, they experienced first-hand the benefits of one of the school’s key student learning strategies: learning centres.

Panyaden 12 Wise Habits: Avihimsa

IMG_8449 Panyaden School wise habit, Avihimsa (not harming)

Avihimsa (pronounced awihingsa in Thai (อวิหิงสา)), is a Pali word which means not causing harm. It originates from the Sanskrit himsa, meaning injury or harm which, when a- is added, takes on the opposite meaning, non-harming (a-himsa). Not causing injury or harm has a broader meaning than simply not physically hurting a fellow human being or animal.

To practise avihimsa is not to say or do anything that creates suffering for oneself or for others and also not to say or do anything that creates or encourages the cause of suffering in oneself or others. This includes avoiding words or conduct which provoke negative thoughts or instigate harmful actions. For example, we might say something to a friend which, though not directly hurting them, may lead to angry thoughts and therefore creates negativity within that person’s mind.

Avihimsa relates particularly to the Buddha’s teaching on moral conduct. He taught about the benefits of ‘’right speech’’ and ‘’right action’’ and proposed an essential minimum of 5 moral precepts (sila) for lay people to follow:

  1. To abstain from killing any living creatures
  2. To abstain from stealing
  3. To abstain from sexual misconduct
  4. To abstain from false speech
  5. To abstain from intoxicants

These are not an empty formula dictated by tradition or religious scriptures, but rather a practical means to ensure one’s speech and actions harm neither others nor oneself. They are essential pre-conditions for the development of a peaceful mind (samadhi) and arising of wisdom (panya).

False speech is not only about whether we are telling the truth or lying. It is defined by the intention of one’s speech and whether that intention is against the best interest of the other person or is for personal interest or gain. A child who teases a classmate because she is ‘fat’ may claim she is only telling the truth and so is not breaking the sila. But if the child’s words cause the classmate to feel inferior and depressed, she is causing harm.

Grade students presenting examples of harmful things to avoid
Panyaden students presenting examples of harmful things and actions to avoid

We are teaching our students that avihimsa means not harming others with your actions, your speech and even your thoughts. Whether thinking badly of others or saying something mean to them out loud, we are creating harm. Thoughts of revenge make us unhappy. Gossiping about somebody else, even though they are not in the room, creates a negative mind and atmosphere for oneself and those present. We can use our children’s actions and reactions in the classroom and at home to teach them the negative impact of harming, and the positive impact of avihimsa, such as pointing out how bad an atmosphere is after someone has used hurtful words. Or we can reflect on how much more fun it is playing with friends when there is no teasing or name-calling. We need to help children see negative thoughts as they arise and redirect them to something positive, to encourage them to see the good aspects of others instead of getting caught up in ill-will or resentment. This is using the Wise Habit yoniso-manasikara, or applying the mind skilfully.

Avihimsa means neither physically nor mentally hurting humans, animals and nature. From killing ants to polluting rivers. We want to help our children understand that harming others is unwise, not because it is a ’sin’ or breaks a ‘rule’, but because of the very direct consequences such actions, words and thoughts have on us as well as others. Practising avihimsa creates a community based on trust and good intention, one which knows how to forgive instead of blame. Moreover, making it a habit in daily life will help us to reduce our own negative thoughts, making our lives lighter and increasing happiness.

lotus2 transparentClick here for the Thai version of the above article.

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Panyaden School Goes International in 2016


Panyaden goes international!

We are excited to announce that starting August 2016 Panyaden School will formally become an international school. We will adopt the highly regarded British curriculum but keep all the things that make Panyaden what it is: the bilingual programme, educational approach, Buddhist values and environmental mindfulness. For more information and details of what will change and what will not, see our FAQ page on our website.

Panyaden School students hard at work in class


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