Saturday, 28 March 2009

Proud of PL!

Preston Lodge High School, Prestonpans, East Lothian have a Charity Committee managed by 6th year pupils. Louise Laing spent some time last Summer in Hle Bee School and persuaded PL students to adopt BEST and HLE BEE as one of their 6th year charities. Today, Sheila Laing and Khaing Maung Maung went to PL to collect a cheque for Hle Bee and BEST.

The students has made an amazing £653.66.

This money will give Hle Bee students a richer education experience and probably quite a lot of chicken in their rice dinners over the next year. Thank you, Preston Lodge.

As a PL parent, I felt very moved by the hard work and generousity of the PL students in raising over £5500 for many charities. Mr Galbraith, PL's headteacher, retires next week. He has improved PL so much and must also take great pride in having built the confidence of these 6th year pupils , enabling them to do so much for others.

Scottish Education at its best!

(PS for those of you who follow this blog, you will know that Khaing Maung Maung has been very ill this year. He is living with us now his parents have returned to Burma and despite a few setbacks in his convalescence, he made it to PL today. Keep remembering him. A slow convalescence is hard to bear for a young, bright guy like him.)

Saturday, 21 March 2009

Pirniehall and Say Ta Nar school links

Pirniehall Primary School's link with Say Ta Nar School for Burmese migrant childreni n Mae Sot was celebrated in a joint community art project. You can see images from the project above.
From February to June 2008 in collaboration with artist Lisa Fleming, Pirniehall parents and pupils documented aspects of an average day using digital and disposable cameras. The community produced over 800 photographs, which formed 12 montages reflecting positive words important to the school. When head teacher Mary Ryan Gillespie visited partner school Say Ta Nar, for Burmese refugees in Thailand, she showed these montages to describe life in Pilton. In return, Say Ta Nar pupils created their own photographs of their daily life in Thailand for Mary to share with Pirniehall back in Scotland.
It's great to be linked with Pirniehall in this joint Global Schools Partnership.

Sunday, 15 March 2009

Dr Thein Lwin meets Red Nose Day on Friday 13th!

Well with a weird title like that, the day can only be strange! Today is Thein Lwin's last day with us. After beginning the day with the Maitre Trust, he arrived at school to be greeted with this strange sight...

... because today was Comic Relief day in UK. Forthview children and staff had dressed up in red noses with funny hair and raised about £350 for Comic Relief.

The highlight of the day was when Dr Thein Lwin spoke to Pirniehall and Forthview teachers about his Reading and Writing for Critical Thinking programmes. He also told us about the Environment Education studies on WATER that he had undertaken with Forthview and Hle Bee chilren this year. I hope he will send me some of the work the children shared so I can post it on this blog. This is what our DfID Global Schools Partnership is all about - learning together across countries and cultures. Here you can see Dr Thein Lwin with Pirniehall and Forthview teachers.

Here are the teachers who hope to visit Hle Bee and Dr Thein Lwin's programmes in Summer 2009.

Dr Thein Lwin's visit to Forthview

Today Dr Thein Lwin enjoyed some Scottish Country Dancing with P1, P5 and P6 pupils. He was as good a dancer as the rest of us!

After break, he led P5/6 to present their learning on Water in Scotland. The children were so excited to present their learning, knowing that Dr Thein Lwin was taking it back to Hle Bee School and that they would be presenting it at our assembly that afternoon. Great international learning had taken place, which is always a thrill.

After Assembly Dr Thein Lwin went to spend time with Angus Tulloch from the Maitre Trust, who support Dr Thein Lwin's programmes in Chiang Mai.

Photos to follow....

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Dr Thein Lwin visits Forthview - Wednesday

Today, Dr Thein Lwin visited Pirniehall Primary School because they have a link with Say Ta Nar School for Burmese Migrant Children in Mae Sot. You can read about this link on

Dr Thein Lwin trained Pho Cho, the HT of Say Ta Nar school in Critical Thinking and was delighted to see the great displays of the work Pirniehall have done with Say Ta Nar. He went round the classes greeting the children who were all keen to greet him with Minglaba!

At 11am, Dr Thein Lwin continued to teach P5/6 at Forthview. Today they were investigating and recording what they know about Water in Edinburgh to share with Grade 5 at Hle Bee. They all worked really well in 4 groups of 6.

At 1.15pm, Dr Thein Lwin gave a talk at Edinburgh University Faculty of Education to around 20 - 25 folk - a mixture of students, staff and interested Scottish and Burmese friends on Reading and Writing for Critical Thinking. It was clear that this went well when the audience asked such thoughtful questions and praised Dr Thein Lwin for his initiative and commitment to building the foundations of a strong education system for Burma's future.

Finally, Dr Thein Lwin went with Fiona Vacher, a Forthview teacher who visited Hle Bee in Summer 08, and Khine Maung (who's looking really well and healthy) to see SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE and eat an Indian meal.
Another worthy and exhausting day in the life of a Global Schools Partnership!

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Dr Thein Lwin's busy day...

.... but not as busy as it would have been if Murray was still in Scotland!

Today Dr Thein Lwin showed Forthview P5/6 pupils the work he had been doing with Hle Bee Grade 5 on WATER - an environmental education investigation using critical thinking. Forthview children listened and thought so well. They asked very clever questions and showed that they have already learnt to so much about the Burmese people and they learnt even more today.

Tomorrow Dr Thein Lwin will get P5/6 to think about water use in Scotland and make a presentation about this for Hle Bee students. Dr Thein Lwin will take this back to Hle Bee.

Sadly we forgot to take photos! We'll post them tomorrow.

Next off to the beautiful Newbattle Abbey College for a very creative meeting with the Management Team who are working with Murray Forgie and Stuart Simpson towards delivering and accrediting 20 Burmese students in English in collaboration with the Scottish Qualification Authority. Newbattle are showing great initiative in developing this project. Here you can see Nora Fitzcharles, Depute Prinicipal of Newbattle Abbey College with Dr Thein Lwin. Read about Newbattle at

Finally, Dr Thein Lwin gave a lecture at Edinburgh University to the BA in Childhood Practice students on Critical Thinking for Burmese schools. Again the students listened and asked very searching and insightful questions.

Now Dr Thein Lwin is asleep........ more tomorrow!

PS If Murray was here, Dr Thein Lwin would still be out at meetings. After all, it's only 11pm!

Monday, 9 March 2009

Dr Thein Lwin returns to Edinburgh

Today, Dr Thein Lwin returns to Forthview Primary School. He comes as the exchange teacher for Sheila Laing, who visited Hle Bee School in July 2008. Fiona Vacher and Aung Myo Myint have already exchanged visits between Forthview and Hle Bee. you can read more about Dr Thein Lwin on

Last time Dr Thein Lwin visited in October 2007, he met all the party leaders in the Scottish Parliament, as you can see here.

We are looking forward to welcoming him and to hearing all he has to teach us about our Hle Bee friends and about Critical Thinking. Watch this space....

Khine is now back at University and enjoying his last week with his parents who return to Burma on 15 March 2009.