Khmer’s Children Literature

Khmer Children’s Literature exploration’s goal is to write six story books for kids, and each one of them represent one of Liger’s Core Value. Those core values are Determination, Integrity, Ingenuity, Appreciation, Optimism, and Stewardship. We’re also aiming to learn about the benefits of reading and being read to at a young age. We also hope to spread the knowledge to Cambodian parents and children. The last goal of the exploration is to get creative with our writing and designing skills. 

Reading and being read to at a young age create such a big impact to babies and kids. It helps to get their interest in literature, expand their imaginations, and develop their creativity. Reading and being read to at a young age also helps the children to understand the language, and the keyword that would benefit them for their further education. Usually, parents are busy, so reading can also be a good way to build and sustain parents and children’s relationship.

My partner and I are working on writing a story that is related to the Integrity Core Value. We are writing for children ages 5 to 7. I can write a story, but I have no talent in art. Fortunately, my partner’s interest is art, and I found out that it is one of his talents. We divided our team into two categories, writer and artist. I don’t want to destroy my partner’s art, so I write, translate the story into khmer, and check everything to make sure that it is a good text. 

I first had the idea of writing a story to educate kids in a scary way, but then my partner and facilitator mentioned, that it is not really okay because we want kids to have fun throughout reading, so I ended up writing a story that is scary, but in a funny way. After finishing everything, including writing, translating and checking through, I felt so useless by the fact that I couldn’t help my partner with anything. He was doing watercolor painting. All I could do was nothing except sitting right there next to him and keep staring at his art and tried to talk a lot to keep him motivated. I also tried drawing, but it was very bad. 

Working with each other at first is never easy. I can say that we were too smart that we had our own good ideas and we were arguing. On the first few days, I didn’t talk much because I was mad of my partner. He would give out ideas and don’t really listen to mine, but then we tried to understand each other, tried to accept each other’s idea and we went along really well. That’s when I thought, No matter how good you are, without collaboration, it’s going to be difficult to succeed

Most of the authors are adults. This fact makes me feel really proud of myself and my classmates because we are writing books at a young age. I am glad that we are going to create an impact. No matter how small or big the impact is, I am proud because it is going to be something good that would change people’s perspective in my country.

Outdoor Leadership

OLE

Our exploration, led by our two lovely facilitators, Teacher Da, and Kieren which is called Outdoor Leadership Exploration. It is an exploration of being a leader in outdoor such as what to do or what should we know if we are out in the wood. Outdoor leaders need to have a specific plan about what they are going to do or where are they going to stay. They should always be a great helper whenever a member of the team needs some help.

 

In this exploration, we learn about the part of the map and how to use the compass. Moreover, we also know what to do if there is no compass to use. We can use or look at the natural resources around us such as moss on the trees or our watches to find out which way is north or south. Example, sometimes, the easiest way to look at the direction is to look at the trees. We want to look at the trees that have moss because they only grow at the north side of the tree (that’s what I know from my facilitator). In every trip, we always have the camping gear. We also learn about that. Example, what are they and what should we take such as the most important one is the tent and first aids. We even learn about what should we do if we don’t have the thing that we need such as lighter or food. After we learn all of the stuff above, we prepare for the first trip.

 

Our first trip is Going to Kirirom which is a very big national park in Kampong Speu province. We only spend a day and a night there. We went to waterfall 1. There is a road for us to drive to get there, but we walked for over two kilometers to get there. When we get there, we ate lunch while enjoying the waterfall. Sadly, we didn’t get a chance to swim. After we finished lunchtime, we wrote our journal about the trip and again, sadly, we have to walk two kilometers back. We plan to camp at the helicopter parking lot that was made a long time ago and there is no more helicopter coming to do parking there, but then, we change our mind to camp near the Sras Srang lake because we can have a very good view in the morning and the landscape is pretty flat. We also cook food by ourself. We cooked pasta, but before the food is ready, there is some problem with the stove. It was errored. So, we have to find something else, but luckily, our friend, Makara find Khmer clay stove that was left by someone. We borrow that stove to make a fire to cook. We also make a campfire. We sat around the campfire to eat our dinner to talk about our Rose, Bud, and Thorn. Rose is something great about the trip. Bud is something that we want to improve on or something bad that had happened to us during the trip. Thorn is something that we expect to see in the other day. In the morning, before we left, we went to another waterfall called O-Trosek. We spend about 10 minutes there. Then, we got on the bus and head back to our school. When we arrive, we cleaned and put back our camping gear in the right place.

 

In exploration time, we continued learning about what we should know. We also learn about how to manage risk. First, we need to identify the risk. What could happen that we don’t expect? What would be some possible outcomes if we made this decision? Then, we need to access the risk. We need to know about how bad is the consequences or what is the risk level. After that, we need to control the risk which means we need to know about What can you do about the risk? How can you manage it effectively? Lastly, we need to reflect on the risk. We need to review the risk and how would we react to it if there is something happen. Also, do we choose the risk or not? We also learn about the CPR(Cardio-pulmonary Resuscitation). We learn those stuff not to just know about it. Yes, we learn to gain more knowledge, then we share the knowledge with other people around us. Also, we learn CPR, in case someone in our team has some problem while we are trekking in our trip. Moreover, we don’t just learn it to copy it down into our book. After we know it, we practice it. While we were practicing, there are three roles, victims, lead rescuers, and rescuer assistants. In order to really understand this topic, we need to act like it is a real situation and the victims really need our help or else they die. The first question that we need to ask before we rescue other is people is “Am I ok?” because if we are not ok, we can’t help the other victim. We need to call out to our friend to help us too. The second question that we are going to ask is “Is everybody ok?” because if everybody is not ok such as they are very panic, we have to calm them down so that they can be our rescuer assistant. Third, we need to ask the victims, Are they Ok even if we can’t see them and if they can’t respond we need to find them fast. If they can respond, the fourth question that we should ask is what had happened to the victim. Then we need to Assess the victim’s situation. While figuring out how to safely get to them, keep talking to them, be positive, keep encouraging them, tell them to lie still, that help is on the way. Then, we need to access the victim situation. Can they stay where they are, or are they in danger and need to be moved? Lastly, we have to look at the victim. How do they look? Are they injure somewhere? If yes, we need to start helping them. This is just Step 1 which is called Stop and look around the scene. Then, we have to continue to Step 2 which is called Primary Patient or the ABCDEF.

A: Awake. We need to make sure that they are awake, just called out and wait to hear the answer from the victims and if they don’t reply, it is time for B.
B: Breathing. We need to make sure that they are breathing and if not, let continue to C.

C: Circulation. We need to know if their heart is still beating or are they bleeding anywhere.
D: Deformity. We need to check. Is any part of the victim broken.
E: Environment. Can the victim stay where he/she is right now? Do she/he need to move?
F: Friends! How is everyone doing?
For Step 3, the big question is how is the patient doing. We need to know, how well they are. What are the injuries? How do they get their injuries? What is our care plan? Step 4 is what is our rescuing plan? Are we staying or going? What is our plan to get help? Who is going to go to get help? What do we do to protect the patient while waiting for help to arrive? What do we do to protect ourselves while waiting for help to arrive? Is the scene safe? After we learn all of this stuff, we prepare yourself for a next, bigger trip which is the last trip.

For the trip, we went to Mondulkiri. On the first day, we spend over 10 hours on the bus. Then, we camped at the headquarter of RDI which is an organization that creates water filters to clean water. After preparing our camping stuff for the night, we cooked food. We even make a campfire. Then, our facilitator bought some yam. We burn the yam in the campfire until it cooked. Then, we share it with each other. On the second day, we went trekking at Leng Truk waterfall. We spend about 15 minutes in the forest until we get to the waterfall. We even cook our own food at the waterfall. We only use fire and bamboo to cook our meal. Our guide cooked new food for us. It is a soup that was cooked in a bamboo. We just need some ingredients from the forest and a bamboo to make a soup. It is really amazing. While we were finishing our lunch. An elephant guide led an elephant to visit us. The elephant is 47 years old and she is very gentle. I fed her some banana and she loves it. After lunch, we spend about 20 minutes to write reflections about the trip. Then, we shared our reflection with each other. After relaxing for a while, we headed back to RDI. On the third day, we went to a waterfall called O-Reang. After we ate lunch and visit a bigger part of the waterfall. We practiced Medical Simulation. Then, our facilitator put us in groups to help each other build a shelter in 20 minutes. After doing all of those fun activity, we headed back to our bus. Overall, on that day, we walked over 10 kilometers. While we were heading back, we stop at a grassy hill and relaxed. We even play hide and seek in the grass. It was really fun. We took lots of pictures. On the fourth day, we came back. We miss our trip so much.

After the trip, we prepare for Sharation. I hope you learn at least something today after reading this.

No Single-Use Plastic at Liger

In 2018, from August to October, I had a seven weeks exploration of trying to stop using plastic in my school, but we realize that we cannot stop in 7 weeks because using plastic products is our habit now. If we definitely stop using plastic, you might have to throw my computer away too, because it is plastic. Yes, I am serious. So, in that seven weeks, we were trying to stop the single-use plastic such as plastic bags, straws, and bottle. I find out that everyone can’t really stop using plastic bags and bottle. Guess what? My favorite drink is packed in the bottle since they are the factories and I can’t drive to the company to tell them to stop it because it is their business. Also, the things about plastic bags. Most of the snack in Cambodia are packed in plastic bags. Some people really do love snack. What should they do? (Stop eating snacks?) Moreover, plastic bags are now very convenience in my country. People are just lazy sometimes. They don’t really use the reusable bags and bring their own food box when they buy their own food. Everyone already knows about the disadvantages of plastic, but why do they still use it? If you don’t believe me, let me ask you a question. Do you still use plastic? If yes, why? If no, forward my question to your friends. I think your answer might be yes.

Let me talk a bit more about plastic. Sometimes, the plastic affects you, but you just can’t really see it. Example, when you buy a hot soup noodle and you pack it back in plastic bag or styrofoam, the chemical of the plastic will release into your noodle and you can’t see it and you eat it at home. Sometimes, plastic doesn’t affect us, but it affects other marine lives such as turtle.

A turtle was pretty famous in a few years ago because of the plastic straw that stuck painfully in his nose. He was bleeding badly in his nose and he yelled a lot. I really pity the turtle. What about you? Some of the turtles don’t get nose stuck, but they confuse between plastic bags and jellyfishes. I think many turtles die because of that reason. Well, it’s also because of plastic trash that was thrown away by us humans.

But, now we are only focusing on our campus then another group will start further with the village near our school. We were searching for the alternatives that can replace plastic and it is good for the environment. We also collaborate with some of the organization. We know them by doing some research on the internet. Before meeting them, we had to send an email to them about our project and why we wanted to meet them. We collaborated with Better U and Only One planet. Better U use grass straw and Only One Planet sell bioplastics such as box for lunch packaging and other reusable product. We went to meet them to talk about their products and order some of them to show at our Sharation Day to show people what we were doing.

We also bought every student and staff a metal straw and a nylon bag because they have their personal stuff and they use them instead of plastic. Also, they can reuse them, so when they go to buy snacks, they can put their stuff inside the bag and they can use the metal straw instead of plastic straws. Our school calls a snack seller to come to sell snack at our school every Saturday, so she brings lots of snack and drinks such as sugarcane that come in with plastic cups, plastic handles, plastic caps, and plastic straws. Now, because of having the plastic exploration, the snack seller stop bring the sugarcane in cups. Instead, she brings a bucket of ice and a lot of plastic bottles that contain sugarcane juice in it. She doesn’t throw away the plastic bottle. Alternatively, she takes back the bottle and she reuses it when she comes to sell them to us again. So, when we buy the sugarcane juice, we need to bring our own bottle. For the snack and drink that come in with plastic wrapper since they were at the factory, we give them an excuse because we love snacks and we cannot stop it.

In week three, we were collecting all of the single-use plastic on our campus every day and see how many do we have. The number of the result is pretty big. In a week we have 2,750 trash. Most of the single-use plastic trash were the plastic bag, snack wrapper, and plastic straw. We have 2,750 single-use plastic trash in a week, so in a month we can have 11,000 and in a year, we can have 132,000 of single-use plastic trash. This is just in Liger campus, so what about the villages provinces and countries.

On 21, 09, 2018, we were doing a small activity on the assembly in our campus. Before getting into the point, we were doing some Q4S which mean questions for sugarcane. We asked them the easy questions, so we could get rid of sugarcane juice and we could get to the point. After they drank the sugarcane that we gave them in the plastic cup with plastic straws, we showed them some pictures. The first picture is the picture of the sugarcane that they are drinking. The second picture showed the reality of the drink that they just had. The picture is very disgusting. You can scroll down a bit to see the pictures. We were getting into the point. We told them why we don’t want them to use the plastic cups, straw, cap, and the handle when they bought sugarcane from the seller. Usually, they keep the straws in the open area, so the dirty and those bacteria might fly around and stuck on to it. Sometimes, when the sellers just change their kid’s diaper, they might not wash their hands yet. Also, about the cup. Sometimes, they hold the mouth of the cups before they hand it to us. It is very disgusting, right?

After we told them about our exploration and why we want to stop the single-use plastic, the single-use plastic in the campus decreases a lot.

To make it a bit worldwide, we created a facebook page to let other Cambodian people know about it. The Facebook page tells people to try to help our environment. To do that, they need to reduce using plastic. We also put some prizes to encourage them to USE the alternative to reduce the single-use plastic. They can post a picture of themselves during using another alternative that is not plastic. We will give them a point for a post. Our team will record the scores and will notify everyone every six weeks.

 

15 points: One keychain / One metal straw / One bamboo straw

25 points: Two keychains

30 points: One medium size fabric bag

50 points: One big size fabric bag

150 points: One small glass cup (300 ml)

200 points: One big glass cup (500 ml)

250 points: One metal box

350 points: One pencil case

400 points: One metal pencils and pens holder

500 points: One water bottle (500 ml)

1000 points: One backpack

 

We also share the Facebook page with our family and relatives and they said that it is a good idea.

So, if you wanna to join our project, you can just use the alternative that can replace plastic and share the idea with people around you and remember that plastic is easy to use, but they are difficult to destroy and it causes a very big problem.

Our Facebook page: facebook.com/noplasticcambodia/