I’ve come to learn the camp,
You’ve come to learn the camp,
We’ve all come to learn the English camp,
At Bungkan School we learn.
This past weekend was spent at school for English Camp, and that was one of the songs the children sang. I have a sneaky suspicion that song wasn’t written by a native English speaker….
When we first began our employment with Bangkok Success they informed us that if the school asks you if you would like to help with extra-curricular activities you should almost always say yes, so if course we agreed to help when Ajarn Jiraporn inquired. The camp was a two day weekend extravaganza that included sleeping over at the school (which we, thankfully, did not have to do. You couldn’t pay me enough to stay there overnight and wake up at 5am with the children for some mandatory exercise). There were 10 rotations for the students to go through and we were divided up into pairs with teachers from another school and given the topic for our rotation. As we were volunteering rotation 3 was called and Apple leans in and urgently whispers, “This one! Volunteer for this one it’s very good! Very easy, fun.” I shot my hand up and was awarded the position of Song and Games group with a mystery partner named Pik who wasn’t going to arrive until the next day I owe Apple a huge thank you, that was such a great rotation to be in!
We arrived bright and early for camp registration and last minute activity planning. I find out Pik, my partner, is one of the people leading the camp and he had all our activities set and ready to go. Pik loves the students (which was quite obvious in the way he interacted with them), he loves singing and dancing, and he loves to lead…I literally participated in the games all day and hardly ran/led the activities at all. I tried but he had in mind how he wanted the activities to go and I was perfectly ok with stepping back and letting him take the spotlight. We had 7 rotations on Saturday (which was exhausting) and after a delicious dinner we participated in the late night activities that went on until 10pm. These activities consisted mostly of songs and dances that we foreign teachers had to participate in (much to the delight of the Thais). At about 930pm the director yelled into the mic, “Disco!” and the auditorium turned into one giant flash mob of 300 Thai children letting loose. The kids screamed with delight as he put on music, the lights went out, and they all instantly started dancing and pulling out little flashlights for makeshift strobe lights. Pik, Emma and I sat in the chairs watching and one of the kids came up and tried to get Pik to go dance but he was too tired and his leg hurt from earlier that day so he declined. I went out to hold the “strobe lights” for the kids, and as a popular Thai hip hop song came on I turned around to see Pik up on the stage breaking it down like a Chippendales dancer! I couldn’t stop laughing. We left the raging K Pop party at around 10.
Sunday was a bit more mellow, I think everyone was worn out from the day before, and we only had 3 rotations left and then a wonderful, delicious catered lunch. I love Thai food. Thais like to show their appreciation by giving, and let me just say we foreign teachers are all very well stocked in the snack department! All in all, Id say English Camp was a great success.