The pictures are going to say it all….I was flicking through some old photos yesterday, in search of another word starting with a letter I haven’t already used and beginning to rue the fact that I’ve chosen a letter method for this month’s slice as soooo many words flitting through my mind, started with ‘d’ or ‘p’ or ‘m’ or other letters which I’ve already done!
These photos are from one of our first annual picnics at the school. We end each school year in December with some team games followed by a picnic. Picnics are a traditional celebration at this time of the year in Meghalaya and kids just love them. A picnic meal is very simple and usually consists of chicken curry, some salad and, you guessed it, heaping amounts of rice! This particular year we finished playing games and went to eat to a friend’s house nearby the local oval. It’s hard to lug huge containers of rice, curry and salad to a picnic location and back then we didn’t have a vehicle. We also had fewer students, but I know you’ll be amazed by how much they eat, in comparison to their tiny frames.
Of course rice is the staple crop in India and most people eat it three times a day. For the poor it helps to keep their stomachs filled and is sold at a cheaper rate if they have a ration card. obtained from the government. It just took a picnic for me to realise that these little ones could eat triple what I would normally eat for lunch and still come back for more!
One of my preferred times to drive into the capital during the year is when the paddy (rice) fields are growing their harvest. The little family plots are divided by neat ditches into rows that radiate an iridescent shade of the brightest green during the months of June and July. Everywhere on both sides of the road, if you aren’t going through a village, you’ll be surrounded by oceans of verdant green…..rice!
The letter ‘r’ has many styles and shapes and is one of my favourite letters to write. It’s usually easy for students to learn to and to write neatly, all between the main lines (we use a four line page book in the early stages of writing). It’s not hard to pronounce at all, as the letter and phonic sound are not that different. The student’s tongue needs to be touching the roof of the mouth and making a soft sound.
It can cause a bit of confusion when it’s linked to some of the vowel dipthongs, like ‘er’, ‘ir’ and ‘ur’ which are all spelt differently but need to be pronounced using with the same ‘er’ sound.
I will probably regret using up my ‘r’ on rice before the end of the month, but anyway, I’m out of ideas for today, so here’s to the lovely letter ‘R’!