Two in Thailand

After raising three children and watching them graduate from college, Bob and Carol decided to leave the educational field and pursue a dream that had been put on hold for 35 years (since graduationg from the University of Northern Iowa). "Two in Thailand" is the journal dedicated to that dream - to serve in the Peace Corps. This is a personal blog. The opinions expressed within do not necessarily represent the views of the Peace Corps or the United States Government.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Introducing an American Game - Kickball

Since Thailand students really enjoy soccer ("football"), I decided it was time to infuse some American culture into my teachings. I had kickballs delivered from the U.S. and I was anxious to teach the sport while also introducing a little English. ("How many outs?" "How many runs?" "You're safe!") My co-teacher and I briefly described the game and then took the students outside. I had to laugh when I discovered "safe" did not translate to "Bplawt pai" which means safe in Thai. The kept yelling "yuu dai" which means "you can stay". I did this 4 times at each of my schools and am now nursing extreme sunburn to my face and arms. January in Thailand can be HOT!!!!!!


We Got Spirit!

The students really got into the game! It took about 2 innings before they figured out the game and strategies. After that, they were extremely excited and didn't want to stop! We decided to have a contest between the two schools next month during a sports day. The students from my second school will travel to the first school. My co-teachers will be the coaches and I will be the umpire! Maybe this will start a new tradition!!!

A Principal's Duties

For the last week, I have noticed that no one has been teaching and the principal has been spending most of his time watering plants. I found out today that the school is being evaluated next week and the appearance of the school speaks highly of the school. The teachers have been cleaning their rooms while the students sit idly or run around the campus.

Friday, January 11, 2008

English Corner

Carol has worked hard to establish an "English Corner" at one of her schools. Thai schools do not have books written in English (due to the high price), so Carol has worked hard to obtain books through grants and donations (some of them from service groups in Moreno Valley, CA). Many of the students have never seen a book written in English (even though they are required to learn English every year in school). Carol has also bought games that teach English as well as logic. She has also created many games which she donates to the school. In this picture, the students must ask Carol (in English) for materials.

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Christmas at the English Corner

During Christmas the students were brought to the "English Corner" to make Christmas decorations, an easy way to teach culture as well as English. They must ask for all materials using English ("May I have scissors.") The Thai English teachers seem to enjoy the activities as much as the students.
Note:You can tell it is Thursday by the uniforms. Every Thursday is "Scout Day".


Saturday, January 05, 2008

Sawatdee Bee Mai!!!!!!

Happy New Year from Thailand!!! We celebrated New Year's Eve Thai style. Our neighbors shown in the last photo invited us to their home for New Year's Eve. Bua (shown bending down on the left) and her sister Ying (directly behind Bua which means "lotus flower") pose with their mother, younger sister, and Bua's daughter, Faa (which means "sky"). New Year's is a time for gift exchange (as opposed to Christmas in America). Games followed for the children and everyone seemed to have a good time. Being the old people we are, we left the party well before midnight, but the party moved over a block for karaoke that continued until 4 a.m. -- and it was loud. We know no one complained, since it is the Thai way to "save face" and of course, Thai's love to party. We thought that would wear everyone out -- we were wrong!!!! The next three nights were a repeat of New Year's Eve. Loud music until the early morning hours!!! No wonder you find vendors, security guards, and workers sleeping on the job!!! To everyone in America and Thailand --- Happy New Year. May your year be full of hope and promise. Kaw hai mii kwaam suh dawlawt bee (may you have happiness all year).