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NASA Astronaut visits SMD

Our new school year is off to a great start and we’ve been busy—we’ve had many visitors, club and sports activities, a fire puja, an election, Environment Day, Hostel Night, and more. One of the key highlights was the visit and presentation by American engineer and former NASA astronaut, Sandra Hall Magnus. The kids were riveted by her talk. She especially enjoyed SMD School’s Himalayan Maker’s Guild and Code Club.

Lhakpa Yangchen Sherpa B15a reports, “We just held the inter-house basketball tourney—the daytime uniforms indicate which house the kids are in: Sambhota House is yellow; Sagarmatha House is blue; Srongten House is red. The boys started the first game with Srongten house, defeating Sambhota house 16 to 32. The girls’ game followed with Sambhota house defeating Srongten house 20 to 22.

Our founder Thrangu Rinpoche is renowned for his calligraphy—inspired by this, we held a handwriting competition (in Tibetan, Nepali & English) in early June. Here is one of the little kids who won receiving a prize from our Principal, Wangchuk Tenzin.

Two big boxes of books arrived from Korea in early June for our library—hurray and thank-you Hayoung! Note how beautifully organized our newly renovated library is now—thank you Nancy!

On June 5, we held our own SMD School World Environment Day. Our SMD Eco Club gave presentations at school and went out into the community of Boudha to clean up garbage and raise awareness about the environment. Big thanks to our teachers who made World Environment Day such a success: Ghen Diki Dolma, Tenzin Loden, Mingmar Lama, Rinesh Khamu, Shanti Tamang, Kamala Moktan, Hari Sapkota & Dev Raj. Also, thanks to our VP Ghen Tenzin Norbu and our guest speaker from the US, Chirag.

SMD girls won June’s Futsal tournament (there were 9 teams)! Futsal is somewhat like soccer, played inside on a smaller pitch—so a good game is fast. Star goalie was Lhakpa Yangchen Sherpa B15.a. The coaching was sponsored by our ex-SMDers who are overseas.

Democracy in action! On May 30, we held elections at SMD for Student Council Executive & School Captains. Our academic head, Ms. Munu, was in charge of organizing.

The Tilganga Eye Hospital visited May 26 to do vision tests for SMD students as well as Thrangu Rinpoche’s nuns and monks.

This month was Saka Dawa. Commemorating the birth, enlightenment and parinirvana (death) of Buddha is the most sacred month in the Tibetan calendar, peaking on the full month (May 29th this year). It is taught that all karmic results (positive, arising out of helping or negative, arising out of harming) are vastly multiplied in this month. Buddhists do their best to practice merit worthy activity and minimize harming activity. The morning of May 29, we went to ‘do kora’ – circumambulation of the Great Stupa and praying. It was already crowded with the faithful at 7 am. Following the kora, we came back to school and did prayers together in the shrine hall.

May 12th was Hostel Night 2018—need I say more?! It is always a blast.

Kids love it when sponsors bring gifts they can share with classmates. Look at those smiles! Thank-you Poland!!

Three weeks into the new school year, which we started April 22, we held a fire puja—a prayer ritual—to remove obstacles for the school year ahead.

Our new Vice Principal, Tenzin Norbu Hiran Rai, is a great mentor. Here he is with the Eco club who raised enough money by recycling paper to buy a set of waste bins for each class. Now, sorting paper and other rubbish will be done every day, directly in class. How clever.