Tag Archives: parents

Midterm Break Message

Let Them Do Nothing!

by Kru Michel, Primary School Principal

With a school break approaching, kids are often looking forward to lots of computer or TV time while parents start scheduling activities and fill up the schedule so no one gets bored. Nothing wrong with joining a club or playing video games but there is one important activity that is usually overlooked: doing nothing!

You might have heard that “The Devil finds work for idle hands”. That could be why we think we should keep our kids busy at all times. However, research shows that creativity and inner peace are more likely to arise during free exploration play. Daydreaming is apparently also linked to better emotional control and the ability to deal with frustration. Read more

Unfortunately, in wanting to make sure our children are not bored, we overschedule their time or give in to their request to have more computer or TV time.

“Middle-class children in America are so overscheduled that they have almost no ‘nothing time.’ They have no time to call on their own resources and be creative. Creativity is making something out of nothing, and it takes time for that to happen,” says Diane Ehrensaft, Ph.D., a developmental and clinical psychologist and professor at The Wright Institute in Berkeley, California. Read more

Signs that a child is too busy:

    1. Sleep is disturbed.
    1. Your child has emotional outbursts or displays frustration and anxiety.
    1. He misses spending time with parents, family and friends.
    1. She cheers when a lesson or practice is cancelled.
    1. Performance at school declines. Click to Read more

So, when school is out, provide your child with ample time to be “bored”, time where no computer, tv or organised activities are available, time where they will have to figure out what to do and therefore start enjoying simple activities they would not get to enjoy otherwise.

Also, I wish you have a great vacation with a lot of new experiences.

Looking forward to seeing you again on 17th April!


Panyaden Year 1-7 Primary School Budding Day

Panyaden International School Primary Budding Day: student performance

Learning through teaching

Panyaden Budding Day 2016. Our primary students show their parents what they have learned this term by teaching them how to solve maths problems, how to dance, about the different types of electrical circuits….and much, much more. Budding Day not only celebrates what students have learned in Term 1, it also provides them with an opportunity to deepen understanding, practise presentation skills and work as a team.

_mg_3182-logo Primary students outdoors with their parents, Panyaden International School Budding Day _mg_3304-logo Drawing with parents, Panyaden International School's Budding Day for primary students _mg_3217-logo This is how it's done, Panyaden student with parents on the school's Budding Day for primary studentsPanyaden students conducting an experiment with their parents on Panyaden's Budding Day for primary students

_mg_3249-logo Hila hoop! Fun activity during Panyaden's Primary Budding Day celebration _mg_3204-logo Panyaden primary students presenting to parents during the school's Budding Day 2016 _mg_3185-logo Primary students and teacher band, Primary Budding Day at Panyaden International School _mg_3316-logo Panyaden's end of term Budding Day celebration for primary students

Click on our image gallery for more photos of Panyaden’s Primary School Budding Day.

Panyaden Self-directed Learning Programme 2016

_mg_2598-logo Computer programming by Panyaden International School primary students Panyaden 'My Project'! Presented by Panyaden International School primary students. _mg_2580-logo Organic desserts made by Panyaden students for 'My Project' _mg_2653-logo Art by Panyaden primary students for the school's 'My Project' _mg_2606-logo Bamboo play structure made by Panyaden International School primary students

It’s Panyaden’s ‘My Project’!

We congratulate our primary students for their best efforts, teamwork and creativity shown during the making of their self-directed projects. Everyone at school including parents and friends enjoyed seeing the results of their hard work on Friday. Well done!

See more photos of  our students’ presentations on the Panyaden blog gallery.

Live and Learn: Dealing with Teasing and Bullying

greyaid430338-728px-stop-bullies-step-7-version-5. Photo by Wikihow,, with thanks.
Stand Up, Speak Up: Dealing with Teasing and Bullying

By Michel Thibeault, Panyaden Head Teacher

Michel Thibeault, Panyaden School Head Teacher

Is my child facing aggression? Is he witnessing other kids being aggressed? Is he a bully? Questions we all have as parents and that need to be answered. It’s time for our annual anti-bullying campaign: November is “Stand Up and Speak Up” month. Classroom and playground disruptive, inappropriate and bullying behaviours are a reality all schools must face and manage. At Panyaden, we use the following tools:

• Code of Conduct
• Annual anti-bullying campaign (Stand Up, Speak Up)
• Set of intervention steps

Code of Conduct

The Panyaden Code of Conduct is rooted in the fact that ultimately, we’re the only ones who can control our own behaviour. That’s why we avoid punishment and rely on consequences. Punishment relies on external judgment, aims at getting compliance and is intended to make the child feel bad; we know it ‘works’ because fear can act as a strong motivator. Unfortunately, the main outcome of this approach is likely to be refined skills in avoiding getting caught! Long-term, the results are likely to be either passive dependence or out-and-out rebellion.

Consequences rely on reflection and aim at developing the skills needed to make better decisions in similar situations in the future. Empowering the students instead of demanding compliance prepares them to resist negative peer pressure. The ultimate goal therefore is self-discipline. By teaching students to control themselves instead of simply making them obey, they are more likely to make their own decisions when, as often happens during teenage years, they are subject to potentially negative influences by peers who would like them to obey the gang’s rules!

Annual anti-bullying campaign

Panyaden’s annual Stand Up, Speak Up campaign has three main goals:

1. Making students aware of the various types and conflicts we might face;
2. Develop an understanding of the inner dynamic of a bullying situation and the roles played by the bully, the bullied and the bystanders;
3. Equip students with tools to deal with any kind of conflict.

Our approach is based on the understanding that bullying is a conscious, wilful and deliberate activity intended to harm, induce fear through the threat of further aggression and create terror (Barbara Coloroso: ‘The Bully, the Bullied and the Bystander’). At school, students examine bullying from the perspective of everyone involved. They are taught to stand up for themselves if they are bullied and also to seek help from an adult if this is not enough to stop the bullying. Students learn about the role of the bystanders and the difference between ‘telling on your friends’ and speaking up to support someone being bullied. Students learn that both the bullied and the bully need help to change their behaviour and that people who are bullied can also be bullying other people.

Set of intervention steps

Level Disruption Management Steps Description
1 Verbal reprimand Teacher communicates to the student that his/her behaviour is inappropriate.
2 1-to-1 meeting between teacher and student and informal action plan Teacher takes the student aside, discusses the inappropriate behaviour.

They build a shared understanding of expectations. They brainstorm ideas about how best to meet them.

3 First level involvement of parents Teacher contacts home for parental support and awareness: verbally at the gate or via the communication book.
4 Consultation with all relevant teachers and Head Teachers Homeroom teachers, specialist teachers and Head Teachers share ideas and agree strategies.
5 Second level involvement of parents: School-based Team Meeting Parents, homeroom teachers and Head Teachers meet and agree on a behaviour plan or course of action. The student is invited to join the end of the meeting to be shown the plan and understand its purpose.

Summary of meeting is sent to all participants.

Teachers implement the behaviour plan.

Follow up meeting with parents.

6 Suspension at school’s discretion If the behaviour modification plan does not yield the desired results, more extreme measures will be taken.

In conclusion

Children come to school to not only learn all the core subjects but also to learn how to behave in society. To master this they require practice, trial and error, and time. It’s the synergy and alignment of families and school efforts that yield the best benefits. If you ever have concerns about your child or the way things are done at school, please talk to your child’s teachers and to the Head Teachers.

Invitation for Panyaden Parents

Parents and teachers get together over tea and light refreshments at Panyaden International School, Chiang Mai

Tea with Teachers

Thursday, 25 August 2016
Nursery/K1-2 from 3:30pm to 4:00pm; Year 1-7 from 4:00pm to 4:45pm

We would like to invite all our parents for an informal get-together with your child’s teacher next week. Get to know our teachers and learning plans for your child over light refreshments.

Live and Learn: Household Chores for Kids


Why household chores are good for your kids

By Neil Amas, School Director

IMG_2845 Panyaden International School Director, Neil Amas
I read recently that 82% of today’s parents did regular household chores when they were young, but only 28% expect the same of their children1. Not wanting to be part of that 28%, I decided during the last school break that it was time my kids did more to help around the house. The ensuing battle was almost epic…. and is still being fought! But new research shows it is worth pursuing because the benefits to your child’s wellbeing are significant.

“Parents today want their kids spending time on things that can bring them success, but ironically, we’ve stopped doing one thing that’s actually been a proven predictor of success – and that’s household chores,” says author and developmental psychologist, Richard Rende2.

DSCF8168 Panyaden student doing chores at school in Chiang Mai during Giving WeekNo doubt the growing tendency to fill our children’s free time with play dates, outings, entertainment and after-school clubs has contributed to the dwindling emphasis on household chores. But research by Dr. Marty Rossmann of the University of Minnesota found that young adults who began chores at ages 3 and 4 were more likely to have good relationships with family and friends, to achieve academic and early career success and to be self-sufficient, compared with those who didn’t have chores. Dr. Rossmann believes that household chores help children build a lasting sense of mastery, responsibility and self-reliance3.

Learning to be kind and helpful at home builds empathy and leads to happiness. Venerable Ajahn Jayasaro points out that generosity is the cornerstone for cultivating a sense of wellbeing for oneself and between people. That is why Caga (being generous) is one of the school’s 12 Wise Habits. It is a catalyst for family togetherness because, as Ajahn Jayasaro notes, “few things enhance the sense of connection between family members as group acts of generosity”.

The theory is all well and good, of course, but many parents know that the actual practice of getting our children to do – let alone enjoy – household chores is another matter! With gentle but firm perseverance, though, it can be done. While my own kids remain reluctant and resistant at times, I have seen a growing acceptance as the routine becomes embedded and I have even noticed some singing along the way!

Here are some tips that may help get your kids to the washing-up bowl.

Make a chores schedule. A schedule of chores made by the child himself which he can tick off each day, creates a sense of personal accomplishment as well as serving as a visible reminder of what need to be done.

Are extra piano lessons necessary? Instead of scheduling another after-school club or a weekend of visits to the cinema or water park, give priority and due importance to household chores. Then your child will get the same message.

Start small. Add fun. You are more likely to get children involved if the tasks are manageable at the start and build up to bigger ones. Add tasks that your child might find fun, like learning how to use the washing machine.

Avoid rewards and punishments. We know that promising an ice cream or pocket money for completing a task does not develop intrinsic motivation. In fact, research suggests external rewards lower inner motivation. Similarly, saying: ‘Of course we can go to the park, just as soon as you finish your chores’ is better than ‘If you don’t do your chores, you’re not going to the park’. The first indicates that there is a natural consequence of not completing something on time. The second is presented as a threat or punishment which is likely to lead to resentment and doing one’s chores begrudgingly.

Benefits to all. Caga and empathy are more likely to be developed if chores benefit the whole family (like doing the family laundry or feeding the dog), not just oneself (like tidying one’s bedroom). Describing tasks as our chores instead of your chores further puts the focus on taking care of others.

Let your child know he is a being a helper rather than helping. Research shows that young children are more motivated by the idea of creating a positive identity – being known as someone who helps4.

Add choice. Involving children in choosing the tasks makes them more likely to buy in.

Don’t make chores into ‘chores’! If you yourself complain about doing the dishes or the pile of laundry that needs to be done, so will your children. Modelling a positive attitude towards household work is probably the best encouragement you can give.

Be consistent and stick to the time frame. If you don’t monitor the chores schedule or follow up every time tasks haven’t been done, your child will soon understand that she only has to do chores some of the time. Make sure that the chore is done within a time frame previously agreed with your child and that whatever was supposed to happen next – such as going outside to play – cannot happen until the chore is done.

It’s OK to help too! If your child is trying but really struggling it’s OK to say, “Well, it looks difficult for you today. Let me give you a hand to get it done before we go out”. Model such a behaviour and, who knows, our child might reciprocate one day and help us when we find it difficult to do ours!



โดย นีล เอมัส School Director

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Download Thai version here.

1See Why Children Need to Do Chores by Jennifer Wallace in the Wall Street Journal

Article for Parents

Angela Duckworth photo from New York Times

Grit by Angela Duckworth. Photo from NY Times Blog It’s OK to quit, but not when the going gets tough!” Psychology Professor Dr Angela Duckworth, who studies resilience in children, suggests that parents who worry that their child tends to regularly give up on things to try something new should relax. This can help help build up interest and passion. But walking away from something just because it is too hard is another matter…..Read the New York Times review by KJ Dell’Antonia here.

Panyaden Blossom Day 2016

DSCF7720 Grade students performing on stage, Panyaden School Blossom Day 2016

Let’s celebrate another year of learning at Panyaden! And what a fiesta of music, dance and drama mixed with lots of enthusiasm, laughter (and some nerves) as the students put forward their best to showcase to parents and friends what they have learned during the year and how much they have blossomed. Well done, everyone!

DSCF7117 Let's sing! Panyaden School Blossom Day Anuban kidsDSCF6900 Anuban (Pre-school) students acting on stage, Panyaden School Blossom Day 2016 DSCF6945 Cute! Kindergarten student acting his part, Panyaden School Blossom Day 2016 DSCF7314 Interview time! Anuban students on stage, Panyaden Blossom Day 2016 DSCF7476 SInging our best! Panyaden School CHiang Mai Blossom Day 2016 DSCF7714 Proud parents, Panyaden School Blossom Day 2016

Lots more photos here on the blog!