I am Lorelei Peterson, a math, education, and psychology major at Hamline, and wish to be a math teacher when I graduate this May. This trip has been absolutely amazing! Last night we stayed Rimkok Resort which is the most beautiful yet. Kok is the name of the river nearby and rim means edge, so named because the gorgeous Kok River runs through the hotel grounds. I spent the morning on our room’s private balcony, it was perfect.
Today we had a later start, and left the hotel around 10:30. Paul Hancock joined us, he heads a foundation that teaches teachers in local schools Montessori style. The first stop we made was at a Thai government school that Khom Loy, Paul’s foundation, had transformed. We saw two preschool classrooms with about 15 students. They have independent learning time everyday from 8-11, which has proven to improve self-motivation in students. Then we stopped by the office and training center, where they have taught around 40 schools their methods. This program has reached over 900 kids.
Then we went to the Starfish, Chiang Rai location. We ate a very nice lunch here. The building had rooms for girls to live, and they would attend local Thai schools. Here we also saw the handicrafts that Paul and his wife, Patricia, help local hill tribe women sell. Then Paul talked about how he and his wife started their foundation. Then we heard from Koy, the only Akah lawyer in the world. She works for Starfish finding children who need to get out of their homes for safety. She also trains local hill tribe people the law. Today we saw a ceremony where over 10 hill tribe people became paralegals. This program is so valuable to the hill tribe communities because they don’t know the rights they have.
After these talks, we met up with the Starfish children and went to the local KFC. The children have been looking forward to this dinner for a month! Tonight was our last night with Dick. We are so grateful for the experiences he has given us these last couple weeks.
We cannot believe there are only 4 days left!