History, Conservation, and Biodiversity
Last week we finished our annual field trips with Chanleas Dai Junior High School students. Over the weekend 100 seventh graders saw history come alive at the Angkor National Museum, learning in groups about Buddhism, the Angkorian and Pre-Angkorian empires, the construction of Bayon and Angkor Wat, and the ancient Hindu religious symbols that are inscribed in many of the temples of the area. After visiting the museum, our young friends met with current university students and visited a local university to learn about options after high school. For many students, the only models they have of university students are PEPY staff, so we were excited to introduce them to other men and women from all walks of life who are currently studying at university in Siem Reap. They were especially inspired by former PEPY interns Thavry Thun and Sopheak Monkol, who are currently on scholarship in the Czech Republic. Thanks to all who made this an inspiring day!
While 7th graders learned about history, 8th grade students focused on the environment and science, with a trip to ACCB (Angkor Center for the Conervation of Biodiversity) . At ACCB we saw endangered and threatned animals who are have been injured or rescued and are being rehabilitated by ACCB, learned about the importance of biodiversity, and heard about all of the different species of mammals, fish and birds native to Cambodia. For those who are traveling through Siem Reap in the future, make sure to plan a visit to ACCB! After visiting the animals and learning about ACCB’s conservation projects in the area, our group hiked up Kbal Spean, the famous River of A Thousand Lingas. There, Angkor guides shared with us the history of the river carvings and their meanings for the Angkorian people.
Students plan to write short stories about their visits to the museum and ACCB. We hope to share their words and drawings in the future, but for now, check out our pictures from the weekend! We weren’t allowed to shoot inside of the museum, but you can see out our pictures of the 8th grade trip to ACCB and Kbal Spean here.