Thai Day

Friday the 26th of April 2002 we celebrated Thai Day in Astwood Bank First School.

About six months earlier Mam gave us all information about Thailand to read in preparation for Thai Day and we hade several meetings planning the event. We were told about the clothes we were going to wear, lovely garments with patterns woven in gold thread for the ladies and blue tops for the men with coulorful cotton material to tie around the waist as a belt. When Mam went to Thailand last time she brought home lots of things for Thai Day and she also had some friends who went to Thailand recently and brought back even more things, like orchids. Here you can see Helen, Ebru and Nenita at one of those meetings.

Mam also have had a fantastic support from the Thai Temple in Birmingham who lent us lots of posters and other things for the day. I came with her to collect everything and it was a new experience for me to meet with the people at the Temple. Two Monks also came to school and took part by teaching the children about Thai religion.

The two last weeks before Thai Day was filled with practical preparations for the day, and the last couple of days have just flown by, filled of activities putting everything together for Thai day.

We had five sections: Way of life, Food and celebrations, History and the Royal Family, Language and culture an last but not least Religion.

Mr Williams did an introduction to "the trip around Thailand", showing where Thailand is in comparizon to Great Britain.

Nenita and Marek talked to the children about the Thai way of life, how the Thai people are always smiling, very respectful towards everything living and very polite. Mam personally do not eat pork or beef because pigs and cattle are helpers on their farm. Elephants are very important in Thailand, they have been used for transporting heavy goods and are often portrayed in different ways.

The girls show how to great people politely in Thailand

In the food section Sue and Helen let the children try Thai snacks that are mainly made from fruit and vegetables so they are very healthy. In Thai cooking everything is cut up in nice pieces, no big chunks of anything, which eliminates the need of a knife at the table. You eat the food with spoon and fork. Because there is a long coastline to Thailand they eat lots of seafood. During the year the Thai people have lots of different festivals and celebrations.

Karen and myself looked after the history and the Royal Family. Thailand has a long history. Around 800 AD Thailand was invaded by China and ruled by them for nearly 400 years, when they rebelled and managed to fight the Chinese off and for the last 800 years Thailand has been an independant country. On May 11, 1949, an official proclamation changed the name of the country from Siam to Thailand, "The Land of the Free". The country is ruled by King Bhumibol Adulyadej and he is married to Queen Sirikit. He is much loved and highly respected by his people. In 2002 he will have been the King for 56 years, the longest ever ruling monarch. The King and Queen have one son and three daughters.


Mam and Louise talked about language and culture. Among other things Louise showed some vegetable carvings that she had done and they also showed some Thai dancing where you move your hands very beautifully.

Thailand is one of the most strongly Buddhist countries in the world. The national religion is Theravada Buddhism, a branch of Hinayana Buddhism, practiced by more than 90% of all Thais. The Thai Temple in Birmingham have their own web page. Two monks from the temple, of which one was the head monk, came to school and together with Ebru they told the children about their religion.

We had a special evening for the adults as well, with Thai food, Thai dancing, raffle tickets where the first price was a meal for two at the Beau Thai restaurant in Solihull.

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