“Teachers Who Care” 2006
left: Senior Counselor Mike Hock, IC-ACE; U.S. Consul General Bea Camp,
Walai Chompoorat, The Prince Royal’s College; Sujitra Sattayarak, Yupparaj
Wittayalai School; Suparerk Mahawan, Suanboonyopathum Lamphun School; Amporn
Sangklub, Samakkee Wittayakom School; Sungkhaya Boonma, Navamindarajudis
Phayap School; Pritchayaporn Aphivinitakul , Lampangkalayanee School,
Lampang; Chainam Riddhiraksa, Chak Kham Khanathon School, Lamphun; George
Wilcox, U.S. Embassy-Bangkok.
Consul General Bea Camp (2nd
left), George Wilcox (seated 2nd
right) and Prof. Kathleen Bailey (Monterey Institute of International
Studies, seated right). Standing: members of the First Cohort, “Teachers
Who Care” 2004.
For professional achievements and leadership in the field
of English-language teaching, 7 respected educators were recently honored in
a dignified ceremony
organized by IC-ACE (an EducationUSA Advising Center) at the American
Corner, Chiang Mai University. US Consul General Bea Camp and Regional
English Language Officer George Wilcox of the U.S. Embassy, Bangkok
presented awards to the second cohort of “Teachers Who Care” before a
gathering of peers, administrators, and international guests. Significantly,
the ceremony was broadcast via Digital Video Conferencing technology to
American Corners around Thailand.
Officially known as The Joint Initiative to Recognize
Distinguished Teachers of English, “Teachers Who Care” is an innovative
project to identify these English teachers in northern Thailand.
Co-organizer Mike Hock of IC-ACE said it was a humbling
experience to meet distinguished teachers who have given so much to students
and communities in major northern Thai cities of Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai,
Lamphun, and Lampang.
“Teachers Who Care” have individually demonstrated
their long-term dedication and leadership to advance the teaching of English
and appreciation of US culture and education. While congratulating the
Cohort of 2006, Consul General Bea Camp shared her sentiments, “If they
had had such awards and shown such appreciation when I was teaching English,
I might still be doing so!”
3rd Thai chess student championship at Pantip Plaza
Suwanchaisri-Kittiyaporn Kanjam (Student Trainee MFLU)
Wiwattanadet from Chiang Mai University Demonstration School received the
championship trophy from Suthipong Maiwan, Board Game association president.
The third Thai chess competition was recently held for
elementary and secondary students to promote the game of Thai chess. It was
organized by the Board Game Association jointly with Chiang Mai Thai Chess
club and the Pantip Plaza. The two day tournament was held on February 11th
and 12th, and an enthusiastic
crowd of almost 300 students came along to support their favorites
On February 12, at 9.30 a.m. selected candidates flexed their brain cells
across the board in a knockout competition. Elementary and secondary
students, both boys and girls, participated in the competition loudly
cheered on by their parents. The hotly contested final concluded at 4 p.m.
and all the competitors and champions joined the trophy presentation where
Suthipong Maiwan, the Board Game Association president, presented the Chiang
Mai Governor’s Trophy to the winner.
Art in Japanese tea cups
Suwanchaisri-Kittiyaporn Kanjam (Student Trainee MFLU)
Chamnongsri Hajanerak, reading the poetry related to the exhibition at the
Panchalie Sathirasas’ ceramic art exhibition “The
Quiet Path” was held at Northern Village 3rd
floor Central Airport Plaza, Chiang Mai on February 9. The exhibition was
attended by crowds of Panchalie’s eager fans and art lovers.
There were 33 ceramic Japanese teacups made by the artist
shown in the exhibition; each with a different surface texture imitating
many kinds of tree bark. She had prepared these over a period of two years
and the visitors were encouraged to touch her works.
Panchalie had traveled the world, learning to sculpt from
artists in many countries; which gave her the inspiration to make these
beautiful tea cups. Over the last 10 years she has made tea cups that
reflect the forest, tree bark and stone, achieving great personal peace and
contentment from her work. She said, “When my fingers move it is similar
to dancing, when soil is sifted slowly it feels like flowers blooming.”
Adding, “While I am working it feels like I am floating in the sea,
traveling through the air and walking in an enchanted forest.” Her art
reflects that nature is the ocean of dreams and she hopes that her work
inspires the imagination of children.
Khunying Chamnongsri Hajanerak opened the exhibition along with Prof. ML
Surasawat Sooksawat, the dean of Faculty of Fine Arts, Chiang Mai
Where can I learn to play the piano?
Musical education in Chiangmai (2)
Jan Verwers, Pongsak Rodpothong
Ohm Chanteyoon practicing in the open air at Payap.
There are many schools in Chiangmai, which teach Western
classical music. We visited ‘Acoustic Studio’, located in the old centre
of the city. Behind the entrance lies a beautiful garden with several small
houses that serve as classrooms. “At the moment we have over 200 students
and 19 teachers”, tells us Kruh On. Khun Umawadee Lopetch, as she
is officially known, is both founder and director of the studio. She teaches
piano. “Our students start at the age of five, and often stay with us for
many years. The oldest is 25. We teach them piano, violin, viola, cello or
double bass. Also the theory of music. Favorite composers here are Bach,
Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven.”
Payap guitarist Jaruwat Kittisit prepares for his next lesson, while Bach
looks on approvingly.
The studio offers their students the possibility to
register for examinations supervised by the Royal School of Music, of which
Kruh On is the representative for Chiangmai. On Sundays the students
practice chamber music in small ensembles in one of the bigger classrooms.
“We will invite you to our next student concert,” Kruh On promised us.
An informal and friendly place is ‘Santi’s Studio’,
next to Hotel Pang Suan Kaew. 10 teachers instruct over 60 students to play
piano, guitar, violin, viola and voice. Santi Saengtong (36) started the
studio four years ago. He plays and teaches piano. This instrument is part
of his daily life ever since he was a boy. Also during the time that he was
studying English Language and Linguistics. After which he returned full time
to his music.
Santi Studio attracts many non-Thai students. Ages vary
from 4 to 60 years. They play mostly Western classical music, with Chopin
being the great favorite. There are regular recitals at Santi’s house,
where students perform for parents, family and friends. Once a year there is
the student concert at AUA, where students, teachers and invited guest
musicians perform. Also in this school students are stimulated to take exams
for diplomas from the Royal School of Music. The Studio will also enter good
students in national competitions.
‘Santi’s Studio’ Ajarn Ongard Kanchaisak giving singing lessons.
By far the biggest institute for musical education here
in the North is the Music Department of Payap University, where at the
moment over 100 students study full time, mainly Western classical music.
The department started in 1974 and has now 20 full-time teachers and several
part-time ones. It is housed in the old residence of the founder of the
music department, Caroline King-shill, and in some modern buildings, just
opposite McCormick Hospital. Students prepare themselves for a BA in General
Music. The curriculum includes several theoretical subjects, as well as the
study of one or more musical instruments. Piano is the most popular,
followed by the guitar. In addition there is flute, clarinet, saxophone and
strings. Payap is the only university that offers harp courses.
Students join the Music Department after finishing their
high school at the age of 18. It will take about four years before they can
sit for the final examinations. To give the students more education and
training, an international exchange program was started. Students go abroad
for some time to other musical departments.
Payap is clearly aiming at growth in the future, in
number of students, teachers and specialties. It is presently developing
programs for MA studies. Subjects might be Performance, Jazz, Music
Education and Music Business. “But we have some technical problems,”
complains Ajarn Joe, whose official name is Bringkop Vora-urai. He is the
Dean of this department and is responsible for the development of new plans.
“We need more classrooms, some studios for ensembles and a studio for
studying recording techniques. And we want to play a more prominent role in
the musical scene in Chiang Mai.” I suggest to him that the present
location is ideal for a small concert-hall. Minor adjustments to one of the
existing buildings might be enough. And there is plenty of parking spaces.
Ajarn Joe reacts with approval. “That is one of my fondest wishes,” he
Postscript: Of all the music schools that exist in Chiang-mai, the
authors visited only a few. The selection is to a large extending based upon
a series of coincidences.
Prawate Subongkod rehearses with string students at ‘Acoustic Studio’.
Fancy fish at Koi show worth 30 mio baht
Kittiyaporn Kanjam and
Pinutda Suwanchaisri (Student Trainees MFLU)
Wongwan, chairman of Chiang Mai Nishikigoi Club (left) presented the trophy
to Weerakit Laosuksri who owned the Grand Champion fish.
Chiang Mai Nishikigoi Club (CNC) in cooperation with
Louis Aquarium shop, Koi Fan Club, Thai Nippon Fish Farm, and Classic Pond
organized the Chiang Mai Jumbo Koi Show on February 4 to 5, 2006 at the
outdoor arena, Kad Suan Kaew Department Store. “Koi” is a Japanese word
meaning fancy carp, and this show is thought of as the “Miss Thailand”
This year’s competition, the 2nd
time in Chiang Mai, differed from last year, in that this contest was for
jumbo fancy carp whereas previously it was only for normal size fancy carp.
Over 60 fancy carp from all over Thailand entered the
competition, separated into 21 types by breed including Kohaku,
Taisho-Sanke, Showa-Sanshoku, Shiro, Utsuri, Shiro, and Bekko. The Grand
Champion this year was Weerakit Laosuksri, who also virtually swept the
board, winning more than 11 prizes in the contest.
fancy carp com-petitors in the Jumbo fancy carp contest.
Weerasak Sotethiphankul, the Louis Aquarium shop-owner
said there are many fancy carp lovers in Thailand and almost all the fish
were imported from Japan. In last year alone, about 30-50,000 fancy carp
were imported to Thailand. Normally, the going rate for fancy carp (size
50-60 cm.) is 40,000-120,000 baht per each. In Thailand the heaviest fancy
carp is 14 kilograms; the longest is 1 meter; and the most expensive fish
cost more than 1 million baht. The largest type of fancy carp is Shi Ma Shi
Ba breed and fancy carp in Thailand are second only to Japan, from where the
breed of fish originated.
The standard of this competition is considered to be equivalent to
internationally accepted criteria used in judging the quality of the fancy
carp. This Koi Show attracted an entry of fancy carp worth more than 30
million baht offering a great opportunity for the fish-lovers of Chiang Mai
to see this competition. Unlike the Night Safari, fish and chips was not on
Two Creativity of Time exhibition
Kittiyaporn Kanjam and
Pinutda Suwanchaisri (Student Trainees MFLU)
works of two artists which presents the beauty of nature
The art exhibition of two artists called “Two
Creativity of Time” is showing at Galerie Panisa. This exhibition remain
on show until March 6, 2006.
The exhibition presents the paintings from two different
artists, Mana Kwangsue and Sakorn Boonlhai. The name “Two Creativity of
Time” refers to their works which came from their own different thoughts,
characteristics, and experiences but each artist managed to capture the same
mood of the impressionist, the feeling lifts the heart of the viewer
witnessing the beauty of nature encapsulated in the painting. Their
paintings are also very colorful and lively and express a sense of freedom
by the artists.
Mana Kwangsue has been painting for 10 years and all of
his works demonstrate his fascination with oils. Sakorn Boonlhai has painted
for only a few years but his artistry and craftsmanship are exemplary. His
preferred medium is acrylics and almost all of his works are about nature.
The exhibition was opened by Prof. Tawan Kangwan-wong,
Vice President of Chiang Mai University Council.