Teacher's Day

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What is Wai Kru or Teachers' Day in Thailand and How Do Thai Schools Celebrate? * March 1st, 2010 2:23 pm ET

Kids dressed up for Wai Kru Day in Thailand - copyright C. James At the beginning of every school year in Thailand, (usually in October but some schools do this in January or even June), every Thai student participates in Wai Kru Day or Teacher's Day Even though each school holds Wai Kru Day in different months, one thing is consistent - Wai Kru Day is held on a Thursday, as this is thought to be an auspicious day by Thai Buddhists. Wai Kru Day is the day of the year when Thai students show respect to their teachers by participating in a big school ceremony. At this time, they thank their teachers for the knowledge they have given them, for the gift of learning, and wish them good luck in the future school year and in their future lives. Western kids could learn a lot from Thai kids and Thai culture, when it comes to paying respect on Teachers' Day. On Wai Kru Day in Thailand, students come to school with flowers and gifts for their teachers. Many of them dress in traditional Thai costumers. At many Thai schools, especially the government schools where the children are poorer than at private Thai schools, the students make their own floral arrangements. They use traditional Thai flowers and plants, banana leaves and incense in the larger arrangements, all of which have different meanings (for example, patience, respect and discipline). These are given to the teachers at an elaborate ceremony during which time every child at the school is expected to wai their teachers (hold their hands in the prayer position) and pay them respect. Some schools have small ceremonies within each classroom; other schools have enormous school-wide ceremonies where thousands of kids take part in the same ceremony. Students will make floral garlands out of flower buds, small circular floral rings, made to fit around the wrist of the teacher. For teachers in Thailand, Wai...
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