Category Archives: People

A Dream of Technology in a Cambodian Classroom

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GUEST BLOG POST: SOUN SOTHY, Cambodian Teacher of English

SothyProPicIn December of 2011, I met 20 year old Cambodian Soun Sothy in a workshop I conducted with the Ponheary Ly Foundation. Sothy has a passion for teaching and technology, and dreams of a future where he can harness technology to teach English to his young Cambodian students. In the new year, we will begin to experiment using iPads in his classroom.

In December 2011, I made my first video called Future Dreams and it showed about what I want for the future which is to become a computer teacher. However, now I teach English to grades five and six because I am studying at the English literature in university. It is my dream that I can teach both English and technology by using many aspects of technology Continue reading

‘Citizens Just Like Me’ Video Project

When I was a young girl, my father used to tell me that even the Queen of England had to sit on the toilet. It wasn’t meant to teach me about the bodily needs of the Queen, but rather to impress upon me that regardless of outer appearances, we are all much more similar than we are different. This thinking has remained with me and been a guiding principle as a traveler, and has in part been the emphasis for a new YouTube video collection Continue reading

Proud to be Burmese

While discussing the upcoming ‘Tell Your Own Story‘ workshop with Burmese refugee students at Best Friends School (also known as School 42 Kilometers) near Mae Sot, Thailand, it was suggested that the boys team create a video about Burmese games. We decided to take them through the brainstorming process anyway. And it was these young boys who came up with the idea to make the video “Proud to Be Burmese”. It was a simple, yet beautiful topic. And they moved through the brainstorming and video capturing almost effortlessly. They KNEW their Burmese Pride very well. Watch their video…

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The Byambatogtoh Family

Gers, Camels and Motorbikes…

Mongolia is divided into Aimags (Provinces). Early one morning, I went out to the Dragon Bus Depot to catch a bus to Bulgan Aimag, west of the capital Ulaan Baator.

Click on the image to see the Dragon Bus Depot in 360 degrees.

After a six hour bus ride, I arrived at the ger home of Mr. Byambatogtoh. The Byambatogtoh Family is a nomadic herding family that moves four times per year with the weather. The family owns 40 horses, 10 cows, 3 camels and 400 sheep and goats. When I arrived, I was welcomed traditionally with milk tea, sweets, and biscuits. Lunch was a delicious fresh noodle (I watched it being made!) and more tea. After lunch, I accompanied Mr. BYambatogtoh’s son to herd the camels on motorbike! We then rode the camels 14 kilometers to a Buddhist sacred space.

The next day, I traveled to the home of Mr. Otgonbayar. The family was wonderfully welcoming, and I enjoyed getting to know everyone: I spent the most time with the grandparents and children. While attempting to communicate with the sixty-two year old grandmother with a phrasebook, I shared photos on my iPad. I then showed her Photobooth. She LOVED seeing herself and playing with photobooth.

 

Sadly, after two days in the countryside, I became sick due to a lack of a sanitation system. It was a strong reminder of the importance of continued development work necessary around the globe. Watch the video for the ‘Reinvent the Toilet’ initiative that my good friend Sara is working on with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Currently, universities around the globe are working to develop toilets that can be functional without a water system. That’s Smart People doing Good Work!

School 1329, Moscow, Russia

More from Moscow!

Доброе утро!  (dohb-ruh-ee oo-truh)!

Good Morning!

Red Square (click on the photo to view 360 degrees!)

I have arrived in a new country, so am now able to begin posting some of my Russian Experiences. I am currently work on a video postcard, but in the meantime, who knows the answers to these Trivia Questions?:

1.  It is 8:00 is New York City. What time is it here in Moscow?

2. What is the currency in Moscow? How many ______ do you receive for 1 US dollar?

3. Russia is known for which type of dance? (HINT to the G-Girls of 2009-10: Ms. Gross took ONE class in this type of dance)

4. Shopping in Moscow — What American Fast Food “Restaurant” is popular here in Moscow? HINT: You can see it in this 360 degree photo.

Click on the image to see the Mall

For non-GFS students and teachers, leave your answers in the comments below by Monday, October 10th and be entered to win a Skyping session. Hope to see you soon on Skype!

Ms. Gross, The Traveling Teacher