Merry Christmas from the PTG Elves
The PTG Committee Members – pictured, from left to right: Nik, Anja, MJ, Jamie, Ann, Sarah, Tina, Vilai, Axel – would like to wish you all a very merry Christmas. A big shout-out to parent volunteers who come and help at various events and at the Lost & Found. Thank you all for your support of the PTG and of our school community.
Santa’s Visit to Primary School
As is tradition at STA, Santa visits all Primary School students – more than 900 of them this year – complete with a sackful of goodies prepared by the PTG elves. Every year the contents of this sack change. One year it was candy canes, another it was reindeer antlers. The candy canes were often left lying around in a sticky mess after one or two licks; the plastic reindeer antlers were of poor quality and quickly broke – leaving behind a sea of plastic waste and tears of frustration. With Sustainability high on the agenda this year, the elves drew inspiration from ancient traditions for Santa’s gifts this year.
****Attn: Spoiler alert! The following lines reveal what Santa will be distributing to the Primary School students on 11/12 December. ****
Mindful of not creating unnecessary waste in this age of overconsumption, Santa is giving the children a gingerbread cookie and the choice of an apple or orange.
Gingerbread cookies are a Christmas tradition that originated in Germany during the 16th century – often, the cookies were used to form the walls and roof of little gingerbread houses. This tradition spread to the UK and the US and has remained popular: gingerbread cookies and houses are indelibly associated with Christmastime.
And this may come as a surprise, but apples and oranges are two fruits traditionally associated with Christmas – for many reasons! Here are some of them:
In the UK, oranges are often placed in Christmas stockings. In the olden days, oranges were an expensive luxury, and so they became a special treat on Christmas morning. Oranges were said to represent a ball of gold, and to be a symbol of charity and giving - they serve as a reminder to care for those in need.
In Germany, apples and oranges are often placed on plates of Christmas goodies that include cookies and marzipan.
In Belgium and the Netherlands, Sinterklaas, who visits children on 6 December, traditionally hands out sweets and mandarin oranges, as he is said to have come from “exotic” Spain, where these fruits grow.
There is a type of apple called the Christkindl apple, also known as Pomme de Noël, Christmas Apples, or Saint Nicolas’ apple.
Apples have been used to decorate Christmas trees since the start of the 17th century, long before glass baubles where created. It is said that a shortage of apples due to drought actually led to the idea of creating “apples” using blown glass in the mid-19th century.
And in China, people give apples on Christmas Eve, because in Chinese Christmas Eve is called Ping’an Ye (平安夜), meaning peaceful or quiet evening, as translated from the Christmas carol, Silent Night. And the word for apple in Mandarin is pingguo (苹果), which sounds like the word for peace.
Looking for Christmas gifts? Don’t forget to check out the vendors at STA’s Christmas Fairs at Primary (Weds 11 Dec) and High School (Thurs 12 Dec).
Selling and donating second-hand uniforms
At the Christmas Fairs, there will be a stall with second-hand uniforms for sale. All items are 100 baht so come along and grab a bargain. What we love about these sales is that they don’t just save you money – they also promote sustainability by reducing textile waste.
Lost property reclaim
At the HS Christmas Fair on 12 December we will have a Lost Property Reclaim. All items will be laid out on tables in the atrium - please stop by to claim what is yours. Please note that anything left behind will be sold for charity or donated to charity.
PTG Parent activities
Sign-ups for a range of PTG activities for parents to take part in will open in January – you will be informed by email. In the meantime, BASE bootcamp is offering 10% off all BASE packages for STA parents if you wish to continue your training over the holidays (write to: email@example.com).
Parent Satisfaction Survey
We encourage all parents to fill in the 2019/20 Parent Satisfaction Survey sent out by school. Please get in touch if for any reason you did not receive it. The deadline for completion is Friday 31 January 2020.
Dates for your diary
The next PTG meeting open to all parents is scheduled for Wed 15 January 2020, 8:15 am, Jo Adamson Theatre, High School. If there are specific topics you would like to see discussed, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The next Friday Night Drinks session will be held on 7 February 2020, details to follow.
Wishing you all a happy holiday season,
Tina Hirschbuehl (PTG Chair) and the whole PTG Committee, Ann (Secretary), Axel (Treasurer), Anja, Jamie, MJ, Nik, Sarah, Vilai.