The Cambodian government has invested 2.5% of its GDP in education for the last ten years. Most children have an assigned place in the public school that is closest to their residence.
In the primary school curriculum, at the moment, there is no foreign language, nor is there any development of abilities, values, or habits like oral expression, teamwork, the impotance of education, cooperation, personal hygiene or healthy eating.
Our school is located 20km from the city of Siem Riep. This is why it is important that the children become familiar with English: so they have the opportunity to develop professional careers in the tourism sector.
The latest government statistics confirm that more than half of the district’s population is living in circumstances of extreme poverty. Also, 30% of the children do not go to school—and many of those enrolled do not attend regularly.
So, we’re dealing with two situations:
Children who don’t attend because they have to work with their families / Broken families uninterested in education:What do we do? Work with the families hand-in-hand to raise school attendance.
Children who don’t attend regularly / Children with delayed school entry due to lack of resources: What do we do? Motivate and develop habits and practices through creativity, Reading, sport, social and communication skills: they realize on their own that they are improving.
We’re finishing the construction of a rural school and we currently have 10 groups of students, with a total of 218 children and teenagers.
Five groups currently attend in the morning and 5 in the afternoon, from Monday to Friday. Each group has a required hour of English class. During the second hour we work in the library, learning concepts through creativity, games, conversation, and reading. In addition, we promote various values and habits.
On the last Friday of the month, we have a bilingual English-Cambodian seminar where we discuss subjects like recycling, emotional education, or scientific or artistic topics. Through studying certain historical figures or by clearly explaining scientific concepts or values, it is possible to work on vocabulary and expand the children’s general knowledge.
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