As with any great sporting event, this one had been much anticipated and long prepared for: Kindergarten Sports Day. The tents were up, the balloons were filled and each class was assigned their team color to sport as they ‘went for the gold.’
What no one had planned on was a nationwide downpour that began the night before the event.
I arrived at school wondering whether the games would be cancelled only to see the kindergarten Thai teachers working with Fantasia-like precision to clean up the area that doubles as the cafeteria and the kindergarten assembly area. This is where we would host the 2011 Kindergarten Sports Day.
To my surprise, it all worked out splendidly.
After the opening speech, the three K1 classes proceeded downstairs to take part in the running of the Olympic torch. Freddy, an attention-loving 3-year-old from K1 Strawberry, did the honors and ran as fast as his chubby little legs could go. The crowd went wild.
When the K1 classes returned upstairs, they competed in the 20-meter dash (one of my little boys placed third overall!). Afterward, we went back downstairs to let the kids compete in two relay races.
Team Yellow (my K1 Watermelon class) won the last event and while the kids enjoyed the games, all of the noise/parents/pressure was too much and a few of them got weepy. Some of them, however, were just too busy being champs.
After a few parent/child piggyback races, a testosterone-fueled 20-meter sprint by the kindergarten dads and a tug-o-war between the moms and the female teachers which left my colleagues and I with sore hands and a little less pride, the closing speech was made and everyone seemed to make their way home satisfied.
…And this dance performed by our K1 kids made it all worth it.