Wai Kru Day Reading Comprehension

A sweet smell fills the air as I walk through the canteen. Students busily gluing and arranging flowers with a gentle buzz of anticipation. Soon it will be Wai Kru Day so English Teacher Online invites you to enjoy this Wai Kru Day reading comprehension.

In the Thai language, “wai” means to bow and “kru” means teacher. So on a Thursday in June each year, Thai students celebrate Wai Kru day. They show their gratitude and respect by bowing to their teachers in this famous old Thai festival.

Flowers of Wai Kru Day

Four different flowers are used when making the ‘Paan Wai Kru’ a traditional tray with pedestal. Each flower has special symbolic meaning consistent with learning, knowledge and wisdom.

Ixora (called khem in Thai) are flowers which have pointed buds while closed, and is the symbol for sharp wit and common sense.

Bermuda grass (called ya phreak) is a resilient plant that grows quickly. It symbolizes perseverance and the ability to learn.

Popped rice (khao tok) is the foundation flower that covers most of the ‘Paan Wai Kru.’ It is the symbol for discipline.

Eggplant flowers are also used as their heavy fruit bow low to symbolize respect and humility.

Wai Kru Day Ceremony

For generations, Thai students have combined these flowers to make the most beautiful tributes in honour of their beloved teachers.

Class by class (starting with the eldest) the students walk onto the stage on their knees with their heads bowed down until they reach their teachers who are sitting on chairs. The students then bow to their teacher and offer them their flowery bouquets wrapped with incense and candles.

Each teacher receives the flowers and touches the student’s shoulder while offering advice or encouragement. After the ceremony, the teachers take their bouquets to decorate all the staffrooms, offices and classrooms in the school.

Everywhere smells amazing on Wai Kru Day but the best part is, we get the morning off class!

Wai Kru Day Reading Comprehension

Read the questions and answer using full sentences.

1. When is Wai Kru Day celebrated each year?

2. Why is Bermuda grass used and what does it symbolize?

3. Why are eggplant flowers used?

4. What are the bouquets wrapped with?

5. What happens to the flowers after the ceremony?

What’s your favourite part of Wai Kru Day? Please share your best answers in the comment section.

My Long Summer Holiday 2018

Was it the 3-D Interactive Art Gallery, Underwater World, or Siam Frost Park?

Maybe it was lazy days spent around the pool, getting KFC delivered or going out to dinner?

Taking a break from English Teacher Online and spending time with my family in Pattaya was certainly the highlight of my long summer holiday this year.

My mum, dad, sister and nephew had flown over to Thailand for 2 weeks. We’d never rented a villa before, but this one had 3 bedrooms and a private swimming pool. It was all ours for 11 glorious days!

As we settled into our new holiday home, I quickly jumped on the internet and checked out all the tourist attractions in the famous seaside town of Pattaya.

The first thing that caught my eye was Art in Paradise, a 3-D interactive gallery, and the family quickly agreed that it should be our first day out.

As we walked around, inside the gallery, we were amazed at all the beautiful pictures and carefully designed camera points to help us take fantastic photographs.

Shots with T-rex, a magic carpet ride, dancing Gangnam style and holding Thors hammer, are just a few examples of the incredible memories that will stay with us for the rest of our lives.

A few days later we went to Underwater World which boasts a 100 meter long tunnel, the longest in Southeast Asia. My nephew, Josh, fed the golden carp with a baby’s milk bottle at the entrance to the aquarium. He said that it felt weird but was very good fun too!

Inside the tunnel, it seemed as if the fish were following us around as we walked slowly through their incredible habitat. Some of the fish were well camouflaged and very difficult to see. Others were enormous and impossible to miss. My favourite was the manta ray, a flat fish which at one point swam right over my head. Incredible!

For our 8th wedding anniversary, the family went to Frost Magical Ice of Siam. We had to wrap up warm before going inside but it was still really cold. They used lots and lots of industrial sized air-con units to keep the room at freezing temperatures.

As we walked around, Josh spotted an ice slide so we carefully walked up the icy steps.  I sat down at the top of the slide and the ice felt so hard and very cold. I pushed myself off and followed Josh down the slide. I turned around to see Pom sliding down too. We all laughed so much!

Next we went to the ice bar and ordered our free drinks. Fanta arrived in thick solid ice glasses that felt as cold as outer space! My wife had never been to a place so cold but said that it was a really fun and romantic way to spend 30 minutes of our 8th wedding anniversary. That’s all the time we could stand as our noses and toes started to freeze and go numb!

Pattaya had such a variety of food and things to do. One evening we found a restaurant that served traditional English roast dinners which my mum, sister and I ordered. Josh had a pizza and my wife and father ate spicy Thai food.

All good things come to an end and soon it was time for my family to go back to England. We waved good-bye at the airport and promised to do it all again next year!

What did you do this long summer holiday?

Please share your memories in the comments section.

 

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ASEAN for Grade 5

It’s week 17 so English Teacher Online presents the last new topic for semester 1, ASEAN for Grade 5.

What is ASEAN?

ASEAN is an abbreviation for Association of South East Asian Nations, a group of 10 countries that work together for peace and stability in their region. It was founded in 1967 by Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and Thailand. Later, they were joined by Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. The motto of ASEAN is, “One Vision, One Identity, One Community.”

The flag of ASEAN is set upon a blue background with 10 yellow rice stalks drawn in the middle of a red circle with a white circumference. The blue represents peace and stability; red represents courage and dynamism; white represents purity; and yellow represents prosperity.

ASEAN covers a land mass of 4.4 million kilometers, 3% of the total land area of the Earth. The population of ASEAN is approximately 625 million people, 8.8% of the world’s population. In 2014, ASEAN did business worth over $2.6 trillion US Dollars.

The “ASEAN Way” refers to how the 10 member countries use quiet diplomacy to solve their problems without bringing discussions into the public eye. Countries avoid embarrassment (which is very bad in many Asian cultures) that may lead to further conflict. It has been suggested that this “ASEAN Way” should be used to reduce conflict globally.

Students in each of the countries are encouraged to learn about the other members of ASEAN. Usually a presentation includes information such as capital city, population, land mass area, currency, spoken languages, flag colours, important people, key industries, as well as any number of interesting facts about food and culture.

Students learn about similarities with other ASEAN countries as well as their differences. In this way the ASEAN family faces global challenges together from a point of understanding and shared respect.

ASEAN plus 3 also includes China, Japan and South Korea. These 3 countries are seen as important partners who can help ASEAN because they are Asian neighbours with strong economies.

What’s your favourite ASEAN country and why? Please share your ideas in the comment section.