The class room


Cambodia was an open plain, with endless views on both sides of the road, paddy fields in some places and unplanted water in others.

flat road
[phot]flat road

Even though it was September, the temperature was getting hotter, not cooler.

As I took a break and ate shaved ice for 300 rials (9 yen) at a small shop on the side of the road, a woman who was also resting there spoke to me in English.

She said her name was Monista and she was an English teacher near here.

She said, “If you have time, why don’t you come to school?”

She asked me to come to the school if I had time.

she asked me to come school
[phot]she asked me to come School

I had no reason to rush, so I decided to follow her. The school was not a junior high or high school, but a school that taught English to poor children who could not afford to go to school.

The school is run by an NGO called L-CDI and is located all over Cambodia.

5 teachers and a manager live in the school with 30 students, and the classes are basically English only.

I had the opportunity to observe a class in action.

The teacher is young and writes so strongly that the chalk on the blackboard blows away, and his tone of voice conveys his enthusiasm.

Students were eager to learn from him. They ask questions, and when the teacher asks them, they raise their hands and speak up.

It was the kind of teacher-student interaction that made me think, “I’ve never had such a serious class in all my life.

The class room
[phot]The class room

The students ranged in age from teens to early twenties, with the older students taking care of the younger ones.

The older pupils look after the younger pupils, and the pupils take it in turns to cook their own meals.

The teachers say

“Why don’t you stay here today?”

They asked me if I would stay here today.

 Just before bedtime, They had a meeting to discuss the day’s events, and afterwards They cleared the desks and chairs in the classroom and spread out the mosquito nets to sleep on the floor.

I lay down in the teachers’ room and the teacher and the manager were very young, in their early twenties, because after graduating from this English language school you can become a qualified teacher.

LCDI is an NGO
[phot]LCDI is an NGO

In other words, the graduates of this school will be able to start an English school somewhere else, and this is how LCDI has spread throughout Cambodia.

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The class room