Samoan children grow up with "fa'aaloalo", respect for the family, the "'aiga", the extended family group of blood and marriage, and from an early age they know their place in the world.
Happy and carefree as children the world over, they learn to respect their elders and this may be seen quite clearly when school is out and they board a bus; no matter how full the bus, there is always room made for older passengers climbing on board and it is not unusual to see them quietly moving and sitting on each other's lap; leaving the bus they all drop the fare in the outstretched hand of the driver, who often doesn't even look, it all moves smoothly.
All children go to school and education is provided by the state in tandem with 5 religious missions, all following a common syllabus. The literacy rate is estimated to be 97% in Samoa and children are taught in Samoan in the first four years of primary school and English as well at an early age. Brighter pupils may move to district schools, where the medium of instruction is English, after four years. Their school uniform, especially in the villages, is the traditional "lava lava" and a system is in place to ensure these are clean: for two days all children wear one colour and the following two days another: the one they don't wear should be washed!
Although modernity has come to Samoa, the children don't forget the "fa'a Samoa", its language and culture and the certainty to really belong.