A novel that is known all over Cambodia is now being introduced. Kolab Pailin or The Rose of Pailin is a novel written by a really famous author, Nhok Thaem. He has written many other books as well and this is one of the best novel he wrote. This novel is a very educational and could really relate to real life. Other than learning about Kolab Pailin, we also learned the history of Water Festival and Kathina. These are two famous ceremonies that are celebrated in Cambodia. The Water Festival is celebrated to remind us at time when our king defeated the enemy by water way, so we celebrated the ceremonies every year during November by having a boat race. Kathina is a celebration that is only celebrated in the Buddhism religion. We celebrated in the Vossa season, the rainy season. We usually go to pagodas and offer the monks different things, like sugar, tea, candles, clothes for the monks, etc… I find these lesson really helpful, because as a Cambodian citizen, we should know all about the history and what we do on the ceremonies.
As the new round starts, new lessons are being introduced. We mostly focused on area and perimeter of different polygons, like triangles and rectangles. Aside from learning new things, we were also given a lesson on code.org that is related to algebra. I found the lesson really helpful, as we are now introducing to algebra little by little. The code.org lesson is just something we could do outside of class, just for extra practice for algebra. On the last unit of the book, we learned about ratios and did some fun projects relating to budgeting, recipes and number of students and staffs in school. To make sure we understand the content, we did a lot of exercises that includes word problems; word problems are sometimes very tricky, but I really think word problems are the best, because they help me both with the math and the words usage with math. I found this round really interesting and excited and I’m even more excited for the new book, 5B.
As mentioned before, we are still focusing on physical science, but this time we look a little deeper into the periodic table and chemical bonding. We basically learned about who created and rearranged the periodic table, how the periodic table is formatted and we also learned about the elements in the periodic table. We didn’t focus on every single one of the element, but we focus on the important and common ones. Furthermore, we look closer into chemical bonding, which includes covalent bonding, ionic bonding and metallic bonding, which are related to electrons in the element. We study closely on each bonding and give examples on all of them to make sure that we are fully understood. Ck12 is a website, where we learn all of our contents from.
The second round of the year starts off with the study of social and environmental injustice; social injustice is basically about how people are treated unfairly, due to their race, origins, religions, etc… Environmental injustice is quite related to social injustice, as it is about how the environment affect human life. As we are learning, we completed a hyperdoc about minority groups in Connecticut and how the power plants affect them, since most of the power plants in the state are located near the minority groups territory. Besides that we are currently focusing on writing argumentative essays. As a warm up, we did something called Philosophical chair, where a topic or statement is given and students need to choose to agree or disagree and they will debate and give turns respectfully. Before writing the argumentative essay, we also learn tips and skills to write an argumentative essay. That includes devil advocate, writing thesis statement, choosing evidence, integrating source and more.
Learning about Khmer traditional food is something that I’m proud of as a Cambodian child. Our goals in this exploration are to gather people’s story about how Cambodian food has impacts on them and to bring back the forgotten food of Cambodia, as nowadays Cambodians tend to have fast foods rather than Cambodian food. After a few weeks of our exploration, we went on a trip to Siem Reap province to interview chefs, small shop owners and local food sellers to get their life’s story and how Cambodian food have influence them. Before we went on the trip, we were assigned into three teams, Journalism, Video and Photo team. I was part of the journalism team and it was a really great experience working as a journalist and I came to realize that being a journalist is like a storyteller. Journalists tell stories, not reports. They might tell the same story, but in unique ways, that’s what I really love about journalists. They also could bring the readers the incident and cause the readers to feel differently something. Click here to see one of my writing about a Cambodian steam pork bun seller at a local market in Siem Reap province. I am also managing the blog and customize the blog format. This is a new a experience for me; I have my own blog, but managing for the whole team is very new to me, but I really enjoy managing it and there are some mistakes and struggles, but we learn from our mistakes.
Digital storytelling and photography are taught in this round in Multimedia essential. We basically learned about the story structures that could be applied to any types of story/writing. I really think learning about the story structure is very helpful for us, as students, because we will write a lot of stories and this skill will be apply to the writing. Digital storytelling is telling stories through technology. Photography is one of the visual storytelling. There are also different kind of photos, like depth, frame, symmetry, etc… Besides just studying in class, we also did some scavenger hunts, where we go around the school campus and take varieties of photos.
This is the first exploration of my third year, which is called Tos Merl (*Khmer words, meaning,“Let’s watch”) Liger Community Traveling Theater. It is basically about building a community mobile theater. Last year I was in a similar exploration called Set Design, which is about preparing sets for a play, but this is a different kind of experience, since our goal is to make a mobile theater, but we also include the sets in the mobile theater. The reason why we do this is because it is more efficient and it could be used in various ways, meaning we could also use it for classrooms, presentations etc… I was assigned to be one of the two manager of the team, which is a totally new experience for me, since I’ve never been a manager before. After get a taste of it, I really like the job of managing, because this person helps the team a lot, interact with the team a lot, helps keep things organized, on task and keep them excited. Half way through our exploration, we went on a three days and two nights trip to Kampong Cham and Tbong Khmum, province located in the central of Cambodia. The main reason for us to go there is to interview people in the rural areas about their experiences with mobile theater or a play. We also filmed their answer, so that we could make a video and post it in Kickstarter, a website that we use to get donations, to buy the container truck, in order to redesign the truck into a mobile theater. On the other hand, we also performed an educational play to those people without our mobile theater, to introduce them to what is a play and what it looks like. It was a very fun experience for me and my teammates to interact with the villagers and get to know them more. This exploration is probably one of the biggest exploration this year, so we will continue this exploration in round 3 or later. I really enjoy working with my teammates and hope to collaborate with them in the future to finish our mobile theater.
This is our first year learning multimedia and is also our first year learning with our new facilitator, Cindy. Our first week of multimedia, we were introduced to what is multimedia and research skills. It was very helpful that we get to learn about research skills. We could really use this skill to help us do research. We understand what is primary source and what is secondary source, these skills really help us when we are in college or when we write research papers and stuff. The following week, we learned about the adobe softwares, which includes Adobe Indesign, Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. These four adobe softwares are all very helpful for us when we want to edit pictures, create posters, design a book, make a graphic designs, make a flyer and more. Below is the poster I made for the homework I was assigned using Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Indesign. Although, we just studied multimedias for a few weeks, I really think it is very practical and helpful.
This year, we will be focusing on Physical Science, which is a type of science. Physical Science is the study of matter and energy, which includes physics and chemistry. These few weeks, we learned about scientific investigation, how scientists investigates the field the science. Below is a picture of the process of scientific investigation. We also learned about the states of matter and atoms. To really understand more about atoms, our facilitator have us read the atom family, which is very useful to me. We also worked in groups to do research and do a short presentation to the whole class about what is inside an atom, atomic numbers etc…
Currently, we are focusing on studying etymology, which is very helpful and useful for English learners. We have a homework packet every week, in which we learned about the root words. We are only focusing on greek and latin words, also we have three new root words every week. Some of the root words we have learned are graph/gram, dict, scrib/scrip, aqua/aqu, mer/mar, bio, photo, phil etc… I really think studying these root words help me and everyone to know more vocabulary and could figure out the definition easily by just looking at the root words. We also have a little assessment related to the root words every Monday. In this class, we did a lot of discussion and the current one is about Poison. The morals of poison is for us to discriminate anyone, to be grateful, appreciative and not do the same as Harry, one of the character in the story that discriminates the doctor by calling him “ Litte Indian” and “ Dirty Little Hindu Sewer Rat”, which is very rude and disrespectful. This story is very descriptive of what was going on in the story and is very detailed.