Sep 02 2007

Ildar’s First Day At School

Category: Friends,Kazakhstan,Personal,PicturesChrisM @ 9:57 pm

Yesterday we went to meet up with Ildar and Mum (Balzhan) to attend his first day at school. Dr Natalya and her daughter Sveta also came. Sveta is still a few years away from going to school, but it looks like she was interested in everything going on at least.
One of the things that really stood out (apart from the fact that Kazakh children appear to start school a year or two later than in Britain) is just how seriously they take the first day at school. There were boys in suits and girls in their Sunday best. (As Kazakhstan is, at least nominally, a Muslim state, perhaps that should be Friday best??). The ceremony lasted a little over an hour, with flags, music blasted out of speakers, the national anthem, lots of kids with flowers, speeches by those about to leave the same school, and plenty of proud relations milling about.
Anyway, on to the photos (I hope to finish editting the videos later and if I get time will post them on here this evening)…

First we have mother and son
Ildar And Balzhan - Son And Proud Mother

This is the better quality of the two group photos…
Balzhan Ildar Dr Natalya Sveta Chris
However, I could not miss this one out, primarily because it has Ildar showing off his milk teeth missing – truly growing up now 🙂
Balzhan Ildar Dr Natalya Sveta Irina

Here we have the children ready lined up to be bored to sleep by the speeches. (I was really impressed how well they all behaved – I got fidgetty enough to sneak off for a cigarette half way through.)
Smartly Dressed For School

Perhaps their good behaviour was attributable to the formidable presence of the headmistress?

The school flag was wheeled out…
School Flag

Finally a quick shot of the school building itself. In times past, it would probably have at least received a quick lick of paint before a ceremony like this, but the sculptures were still pretty impressive.
School Wall

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