One afternoon after returning early from school we went to visit Pim’s mother at work. She owns a small shop opposite primary school in the village, where for a few baht she offers snacks and drinks to kids. We arrived at the time when classes at school finished and found the shop crowded with kids. Two of them approached me immediately and started asking all questions they knew – what is your name, where are you from, how old are you etc. At the same time the others were just observing from far, too shy to speak to a foreigner. Luckily after a few minutes of gazing from a distance they became more comfortable and slowly the crowd started talking to me. After hearing all of them answer a few simple questions they warmed up and were ready to show me all they learned at school. Out of a sudden one girl stood in front of the group and as if she was reciting a poem she said:
My name is xxx, I’m 10 years old. I’m a student. My school is xxx. My director’s name is xxx. My father’s name is xxx. He is a farmer. My mother’s name is xxx. She is a farmer. My friend’s name is xxx. I like to eat xxx. I like to drink. My favourite fruit is xxx. My birthday is xxx. Thank you.
After the first brave presenter I heard the exact same expression from every single child. It was sweet to see how overwhelmed they were and how big this performance was for them. I could feel that even if their English level was low they were truly interested in learning and understanding it. I liked this group very much J We soon left home and they also went their ways. Later I heard from Pim that they don’t have an English teacher at the primary school, so the only English lessons they receive is from someone who knows how to speak a bit. From what I noticed the main focus on these classes was to memorize a few English sentences…
My new friends :)
Sunset in our village
The day after when we arrived from school the kids were walking around our house, waiting for us to come back home. They were shy to come by without being invited, so they just whispered “hello” from the distance… We invited them over to enter the house. They were four of them and they came to sing me a song which they learned at school. It was a song of Rod Steward “I’m sailing” – you can see their performance under this link (Thai kids singing Rod Steward)
I found the music to the song and we ended up singing it together for a few times. They were very happy that I liked their singing and that I joined them. We agreed that the day after we will learn a new song. J I was very excited for these after work lessons and the same on their side – they were happy to have a foreigner teacher giving them a lot of attention J
And so our English class continued the day after with the song Old MacDonald had a farm – a very easy song to learn and have a bit of fun with it. When we arrived home from school a few of the kids were already waiting in front of our house – the news spread and there were nine of them today. I printed the lyrics for them and together with Pim we translated them and were ready to sing. They were very motivated to learn and very attentive when we explained the pronunciation. It was a lot of fun and they were adorable singing J When it got darker I was happy to see them walk by while repeating the lyrics… J