I want to start by saying that i am not crowing that my kids have been on TV. We feel lucky and blessed.
Over the years on “Kids Day” we mostly go to our local TV station. Thai PBS. To be honest we always watch that station. Its commercial free, paid for mainly by taxes on Drink and cigarettes and for us the programming is less blood and guts and more on a moral level. The kids programs are entertaining, factual and appeal to children in many ways.
By being one of the few non Thais that go i have become recognised by the presenters and producers alike and they often come up and talk to me and the kids.
Last year the presenter of one of the shows that our kids happens to like. Fun Milk Movement, said that she would like the kids to go and sing and dance with her at the display of her program.
To fill in the blanks, “Kids Day” is a national day where special events are held to show the kids what their futures could be and teach them at the same time. At the TV station they have each program set up with the presenters there. each program with have an activity for the kids to do with anything from colouring a picture to doing a screen test for reading the news . the kids normally walk away with a bucket full of free things and things they have gained during the day.
Anyway the kids went to join in the activities of their program. The children could join in and leave as and when they wanted. My 2 went on for 40 minutes and were only 2 of 7 that did that long. I noticed they were asking parents to sign the kids up for the possibility to be on the show. So naturally we did this and kept our fingers crossed.
A couple of weeks later we got a call to ask us to go to the studio. We thought this would be a screen test or something. WRONG! this was a full filming for tv. Not just that but they got paid too! we were not expecting that. Then on the way out after, one of the production team approached us for Lin to do a solo bit one a separate program. I have a simple rule when it comes to activities for the kids, we dont say no.
Lin at front in yellow and Alex by the character in yellow too.
Having seen the first program on tv i chose to thank the program makers and the presenter who i did not know there was also the boss of the program makers. I explained what a good experience it was for the kids and us and how much it was enjoyed once it had been on TV.
A short while later and we got another call from the studio to film again. We felt very blessed to get a call back.
One thing we noticed this time around was how different the parents. some very stuck up and or pushy parents, but we have a simple mantra. Try your best and have fun. what was always funny is that Alex was always at the front of the line when it come to having the make up put on. Strange boy haha
One day i got a message from the Presenter and now a friend too. She said that her friend had invited us to be on another program. This one is called Kids Club and they deal with a different subject every week. We as a family, not just the kids, all of ushad been invited to be on the show about organic farming.
I was rather nervous as for me it was only ever about the children. I could already see them gaining in confidence which was a good thing, and has continued to be a good thing. So here we were about to go on tv and shall we say that if i ever went to the beach, Greenpeace normally turn up and try and drag me back in the water haha.
The whole experience was wonderful. ok so no pay for that one but the free gifts that both kids got was amazing.
On return i penned a thank you and about the whole experience and that if ever again we were needed we would be happy to help.
We were again asked a few more times to be on the first program. The kids bank accounts were getting very healthy. Then one day i posted on their Facebook page how much we enjoyed a program. Having done this i suddenly got a message from the TV station from another program called “Open House”. the British version would be Points of View. a program that want viewers to openly voice their thoughts on different programs. We had to make a video and send it in to say what we like about the programs , but also if we thought they could make changes to make things better. As the station had just cut all kids programs on school days before school i explained that i thought 30 minutes would be good for the kids as 2 and a half hours straight of news was a bit much for kids to deal with. This program was aired a while later and we got good feedback about it.
The presenter of the Fun Milk Movement program had been working with a university in a study about children’s tv. Our children were 2 of the 6 used in a special program made, but never to be shown. When all this had finished we got a call to do another filming, which was to be the last or at least for now. We were given dvds of the special program made and the children got certificates for their part in the study signed by the head of the University and also the head of National TV broadcasting in Thailand.
When we returned to the TV station on “Kids Day” this year, it was more like visiting friends with so many miles, hand shakes and hugs. A wonderful time for us all.
We feel so blessed that this happened and hope at some stage we can do some more. The main thing is the confidence the children have gained is special. before they were quiet and shy, but now out going and confident. Out of all of it this means the most to us and is helping at school.