Curriculum & Dharma
SMD School is one of the high-performing schools in Nepal; our students place high in the national board exams, and several SMDers win scholarships yearly to finish grades 11 and 12 at top independent schools worldwide, including United World Colleges. We are unique in Nepal because we enrich the Nepali government curriculum by also including the teachings of the Buddha.
Rinpoche’s chief aim is to keep the Buddhist way of life of the Himalayas alive. As a Buddhist school, we teach tenets of Tibetan Buddhism, both theory and practice. Our boarders do prayer and meditation (Chenrezig, Medicine Buddha and White Tara) every day in rotation. Rinpoche kindly arranged for a monk to give instructions every Monday evening on the meaning of sadhana, how to chant the liturgy and how to do the visualization. Grades three and up are learning what Buddha taught and what it means for them in their daily life. They are even taking part in debate and shrine keeping.
Sometimes the kids go down to “do kora” (circumambulate and say prayers) at the Great Boudhanath Stupa. We teach Dharma as the children’s lives unfold moment by moment, trying to lead their understanding into their conduct…so they will act like little Buddhas until they become Buddhas.
Our school year starts according to the Nepali school year of April/May to April of the following year. There are two long holidays every year; the most important one for us is Losar (Tibetan New Year) in February. During holidays, our boarding students go home if they can—for many it is not possible as their villages are too far away and heavy snow conditions, rains or mudslides make many high mountain trails impassable or too dangerous to travel on.