A Celebration of Learning
Every year, Panyaden School sets aside a day to officially celebrate the joy of learning and to mark the end of term. Today our blossoming buds from Nursery and Kindergarten danced, sang and showcased their work and learning to their parents who also joined in the games and activities such as creating art with bubbles and making bugs with modelling clay and talking about their life cycles.
Budding Day for Prathom students will be tomorrow from 8.30am to 12noon. The celebrations will finish off with a bilingual presentation of the primary children’s ‘My Project’, independent learning projects they have spent all term working hard on.
Lots more photos by Ally Taylor of the day’s celebrations are here on the blog.
Preparations for commemorating Asanha Bucha Day started on Wednesday at Panyaden School. Our students made large candles to present our guest, the Venerable Ajahn Jiew from Wat Pha Yen Boon, Chiang Rai.
Candle-making photos here on the blog.
Today, we began with our Prathom 5-6 students presenting to their younger Anuban schoolmates the significance of this day, which is one of the most important Buddhist festivals of the year, marking the Buddha’s first sermon. The following day, Wan Khao Pansa, also marks the start of the Buddhist Lent, a time for doing good deeds and committing to the moral precepts. It is a time when monks retreat for three months during the rainy season for contemplation and religious studies.
Later in the day, our student representatives also gave the same bilingual presentation to the other primary students. A large candle was then presented to the Venerable Ajahn Jiew before we all went on to our school’s Buddha Sala for the ‘wien tien’ procession.
After the ceremony, Ajahn Jiew visited the Kindergarten 3 students in their classroom answering questions like “Are there aliens?”’and ”Why do you shave your head?'” before conducting a talk for teachers, staff, parents and members of the public.
Ajahn Jiew spoke about the wisdom of Dhamma that already exists in nature and in us. The Buddha himself encourages us to investigate, experience and understand the Dhamma for ourselves. The Sangha is here to guide and point us to the Dhamma. The talk ended with a series of questions from the audience before Ajahn Jiew led everyone in a short meditation session.
Click here for Asanha Bucha Day photos.
Panyaden says thank you to all teachers
Every year at the beginning of the school term, Panyaden School joins students all over Thailand to formally express their appreciation to their teachers on Wai Kru Day. Our student MCs began the ceremony today by inviting all teachers to the stage, after which student representatives gave a bilingual talk about the meaning of Wai Kru and led us in the Pa Je Ra song of respect for all the guides and teachers in our lives.
More photos here on the blog.
Beautiful flowers (each with a special meaning) lovingly arranged by our students were then presented to each teacher, our Head Teachers and Director. Back in their classrooms, the little ones in Nursery and Kindergarten 1 also gave flowers to their homeroom teachers. Student representatives also read their essays entitled “My Teacher” to express their gratitude with promises to continue to try their best at school.
The ceremony ended with a short speech by Kru Neil, our School Director, which started with a story about a student who showed his gratitude to his teacher through kindness and good deeds instead of words. Kru Neil then added, “if we think about all the things our teachers have done for us, we feel thankful. And we can show this by greeting them every morning with a wai. By saying thank you, using ka and khrab, by asking if there is anything I can do to help…..? and most importantly, by trying our very best at school. And when you start doing this you start realising, hey this feels good! When we are thankful we increase the happiness for everyone, including ourselves. So today I want you to remember that saying thank you is important but it is not only what you say that matters, but what you do.”
Panyaden School gives thanks on Loy Krathong day
Today, our students, staff and parents joined many in Chiang Mai and elsewhere in Thailand in making their own krathongs. After that, we sang and danced our way to the school swimming pool where two representatives gave a bilingual introduction on the meaning of Loy Krathong.
Loy Krathong is a charming Thai celebration held annually on the full moon of the twelfth lunar month (November). This festival pays respect to the Buddha and to rivers that give us life, asking for forgiveness for any pollution or misuse by humans and to give thanks for the water that gives us sustenance. It is also seen as a ceremony to float away any bad luck from the last 12 months.
‘Loy’ means ‘to float,’ while ‘krathong’ refers to the lotus-shaped vessel that floats on water. The krathong is usually made of banana leaves wrapped around the cut trunk of a banana tree or a spider lily plant. It contains food, betel nuts, flowers, joss sticks, candles and sometimes coins.
After the introduction by our able MCs, we enjoyed a traditional Thai dance, “Rabam Sukhothai” performed especially for this festival by our dance students. The ceremony ended with a gesture of our gratitude to the Buddha and to the River Goddess. We lifted our krathongs to say thank you and made a silent wish before carefully releasing them onto the water.
Happy Loy Krathong everyone!
See more photos by Ally Taylor on the blog.
“The Fake Seeds”
To illustrate the importance of wise habit, Sacca (สัจจะ) or being truthful, our P4-6 students performed a story about a king who sets a task to find out who will inherit his throne. The story is from a book on the 12 wise habits by Venerable Ajahn Jayasaro, ‘12 Ways to Happiness’. Students Elodie and Kate from P4 were our bilingual narrators.
“Once upon a time there was a King (played by Nick from P6) who lived in a palace. He had only daughters and no son. So he decided to hold a nationwide a contest to see who was worthy to marry his daughter and become King. He gave 3 eligible men a seed each to grow and told them to come back in a year.
The 3 men tried and tried but could not make their seeds grow. When the year was up they came to show the King what they had achieved. The first man (played by Jack, P4) came back with a big plant. The second (Hugo, P4) also came back with a plant but a more beautiful and luscious one. Both had cheated by buying their plants from elsewhere. The last man (played by Oliver, P5), however, came back with the same seed. ‘’Mine did not grow,’’ he told the King.
The King revealed that he given them fake seeds which would not grow. Unlike the other two, the third man had been truthful by coming back with the same seed. The King happily announced to everyone in his kingdom that this was the man worthy of his crown.”
กาลครั้งหนึ่งนานมาแล้ว มีพระราชาองค์หนึ่ง มีพระธิดาแต่ไม่มีพระโอรส พระราชาจึงต้องหาเพื่อสืบทอดราชสมบัติและปกครองประเทศต่อไป ท่านจึงคิดหาอุบายโดยเรียกชายหนุ่มเข้าไปในวังและแจกเมล็ดพันธุ์พืชคนละเมล็ดให้เอาไปปลูก ท่านสั่งว่าปีหน้าครบ 1 ปีให้เอามาดูว่าปลูกได้อะไรบ้าง ขนาดเท่าใดบ้าง ชายสามคนก็นำเอาเมล็ดไปปลูกที่บ้าน หนึ่งปีผ่านไปชายคนที่หนึ่งกลับมาพร้อมกับต้นไม้ต้นใหญ่ และคนที่สองกลับมาพร้อมกับต้นไม้สมบูรณ์สวยงาม ส่วนชายคนสุดท้ายมีแค่เพียงเมล็ดพียงอย่างเดียว ไม่มีอะไรงอกเงย พระราชามองชายคนที่สามแล้วชี้ว่าคนนี้แหละที่จะให้เป็นทายาทเพื่อเป็นพระราชาต่อไป เพราะเมล็ดที่แจกไปนั้นเป็นเมล็ดที่ไม่สามารถขยายพันธู์ได้ ชายคนนี้มีความซื่อสัตย์ ควรค่าแก่การสืบทอดราชสมบัติ
Grand Opening at Panyaden School
What a delight to see the wonderful projects our students have created through a lot of teamwork and perseverance! All 7 teams of Panyaden’s Prathom students presented photos and slideshows to their parents, peers and teachers.
Our students have invested a lot of thought, planning, focus, commitment and teamwork into the making of each project. Today’s bilingual presentation was a good way of wrapping up as well as for each student to step back and give us their perspective on what they have learnt throughout the whole process. It was clear how much fun our children had interacting and working alongside their schoolmates. They shared with us what they liked or disliked, the difficulties and joys they faced. They showed us which wise habits they used along the way, in particular khanti (patience), viriya (perseverance) and chanda (enthusiasm).
Panyaden’s Head Teachers, Kru Dokmai and Kru Michel (who both spearheaded this programme), facilitators as well as other teachers and parents have every reason to be proud of the growth and learning these children have shown.
Click on following Panyaden blog links to see slideshows and more photos of the various projects:
Slideshows of individual projects:
- Boat Part 1
- Boat Part 2
- Bamboo Bridge
- Happy House
- Balloon-powered Cars
- Friendly Panyaden Students Magazine
- Making Clothes
- Wall Murals
Photos taken on 24 Aug by Ally Taylor
Panyaden School celebrates Teachers’ Day
It was a beautiful sunny morning today in Chiang Mai, a wonderful time for Panyaden School’s students to formally show their respect and thanks to our hardworking teachers with flowers and tributes during the school’s Wai Kru ceremony.
Two young Prathom students welcomed everyone in Thai and English before inviting the school’s director, head teachers and homeroom teachers to the front. Our bilingual student representatives spoke about the meaning of ‘Wai Kru’, which means to ‘wai’ or bow with hands pressed together as a sign of deep respect to their teachers (‘kru’) through the giving of flowers.
Key flowers like ‘dok khem’ (ixora) are presented in decorative paans (Thai-style pedestal trays) or wrapped in banana leaves. Among other things, they symbolise the students’ promise to the teachers to be good, to keep their minds sharp and always ready to learn.
Our teachers (and parents in the audience) were visibly moved by our pupils’ gentle and heartfelt recital and singing of a poem and song paying tribute to all teachers in Thailand. Class by class, the students then lined up to present their flowers. Three Prathom students shyly read their essays about ‘My Teacher’, drawing smiles all around.
Before wrapping up the ceremony, our school director, Neil Amas, thanked the students on behalf of all the teachers for the kindness and gratitude shown today. He encouraged all to be kind to everyone including ourselves, and to try our best in everything we do. With that message in mind, the students went back to their classrooms to begin a brand new school day.
More photos on Panyaden blog:
Fun with Trees!
Trees play an important part in our lives. They give us paper, wood, fruit and medicine. They beautify our gardens and absorb carbon dioxide from our environment whilst giving off oxygen essential for our survival and good health. And so trees were the main focus on our first day of Summer School at Panyaden whose theme this year is ‘Our Environment, Our Future’.
The day started with icebreaker games, singing and dancing organised by our teachers from Panyaden and Rabbit In The Moon Foundation to welcome our summer school students. After some fun getting-to-know-you games, our students proceeded outdoors for a nature walk around the school campus to learn more about the importance of trees. During the walk, they picked up leaves and seeds dropped from fruit trees. Armed with these treasures, our children went back to the classrooms and created new and existing species of insects with the seeds. They then drew and cut out shapes of animals after which they stuck on colourful leaves. The objective was to let the children experience not only the importance of trees in our environment but to find creative ways of expressing their usefulness and beauty through art and play.
Stay tuned for more blog updates on summer school activities in the coming weeks! If you wish to enrol your child for this summer school, please contact Khun Boy on mobile: 0800 785 115 (English and Thai) or email him at Boy@panyaden.ac.th.
We made it through the dark caves of Lascaux with the help of a young Panyaden School student! With a flashlight, the student confidently guided visitors through the cave full of ‘primitive’ art on the walls that she and her classmates drew and built to simulate the experience of exploring the original caves, a subject they studied about during the last term of school.
Today was Panyaden School’s second Blossom Day; a day to celebrate what our students learnt this term. They have all been working hard to make different crafts for the Blossom market as well as making props and practicing their roles for the show that they put on for their parents and friends.
Our approach has been to encourage all our children to take roles, some of which may be unfamiliar or challenging, to help them overcome their nerves and develop self-confidence. Our goal is that students enjoy their effort and take on their roles with delight and enthusiasm, demonstrating their ‘chanta’ (doing your very best in the present moment).
We are all very proud of our students’ ability to perform in front of an appreciate audience today. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the show before moving on to take part in the buzz and hustle of the Blossom market in which students and teachers made a brisk sale of food and their own handicrafts, like books, painted pebbles and clay art. All proceeds from the sales were donated to a learning centre for disadvantaged children from the mountains around Mae Chaem, Chiang Mai (supported by the charity, Somdech Ya).
Thank you to all teachers, students and staff for all your hard work and enthusiasm! And of course to our parents for all their support at home.
(Note: CD-Roms of photos will be on sale at the office in the new term.)