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Ten Thoughts About School Visit in Cambodia - From a Kid's Perspective

On the 8th of November we visited a small, poor, local school outside Siem Riep in Cambodia, and these are my thoughts:

1 School

The kids' school was very different from what we have in the west. There were a lot of different aged kids in each class, and from what I saw, they were up to 4 years apart! They also have to go to school on Saturday.

2 Lunch

For lunch, the kids had to go all the way home, eat their food, and go back to school, IN ONE HOUR! some kids lived up to 3 kilometers away from the school, meaning they had to walk or bike about 12 kilometers a day...

3 Patio/Recess

While we were at the school, we saw that they had patio/recess, but it was only 10 minutes! We later found out that they only had two of these 10 minute recesses every day, so that's only 20 minutes recess a day! In my old school we had 45 minutes, so this seems very short

4 Language

When the kids came out of their lessons for patio/recess, we tried talking to them, and surprisingly, (for me at least) a lot of the older kids could actually speak some English! Since it was a small, public school about 20 kilometers outside of Siem Riep, I did not expect them to speak English!

5 Names

When we donated our gifts to the children we were presented their names and birth year, and we found out that a lot of them had names that meant something, like Pearl, and Poorest. This reminded me of the time we went to South Africa because they also had names that meant something

6 Donations

The main reason that we went to the school was so we could donate some school supplies for the 20 poorest kids in the school. As I said earlier, when we gave them a new school bag, we were presented with their names and birth year, and it felt nice to give them something.

7 Campus

The Campus at this Cambodian school was really small compared to all the other schools I have visited. I think it was only about 60 x 60 meters squared, for the building with classrooms, the patio, and for the bathrooms, and it felt a bit compressed.

8 Bikes

I am from Denmark which is a country with a lot of bikes, and a ton of children bike to school, but when they arrive at school, they just leave all their bicycles in messy arrangements. When we went to this school though, there were about 70 bikes all lined up in perfect lines which kind of impressed me.

9 Classrooms

The classrooms at this school were much cleaner and had much more resources than I had expected. There were still very few resources, but more than I had expected. It also looked like they had an amazing janitor because it was really clean in the classrooms.

10 School Uniforms

Even though a lot of the kids were very poor, almost all the school uniforms were spotless, which was another thing that surprised me. I'm sure they did not have washing machines, so they must wash the uniforms by hand and that must be kind of hard.

All in all, I think it was really fun and a good learning experience for me and my brother because we have not really seen this kind of school before.

By: Toby

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