Education Is The Key To Ending Poverty

Male Cambodian child sitting at desk with his pencil and notebook, smiling.

Lesson Time

Time to get serious. This is the entire reason the school exists. With education, these kids might get jobs away from their desolate lives, away from the doldrums of watching their siblings whilst their parents work in the rice fields, from a possible life of begging or worse. With knowledge of Khmer, English and some Math, these kids are well armed to break the poverty cycle.

Female Cambodian Child writes on the blackboard in Khmer

Teacher pointing to Khmer words on the blackboard and teacher cutting out a paper star in front of classroom

Teacher surrounded by four kindergarten children looking at his phone whilst they take a selfie
There are three full time teachers at Sangtawan School who are wholly committed to engaging these children. The children, in return, are eager to impress.

I witnessed the teachers as encompassing a happy combination of caring and fun but with the appropriate amount of firmness.
A young male Cambodian student writing his letters onto a personal blackboard at his desk

Young male Cambodian student listening intently for instructions as he holds his chalk and personal chalkboard

Khmer Written Language
I was struck by the beauty of the written Khmer language. It appears lyrical and romantic tinged with a semblance of ancientness. This is from Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Khmer text example. All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood

English Translation
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

Flower shapes with English words in the middleEnglish Language Room
One of our teams projects for this visit was to create an English Room. A small room apart from the main classrooms where the kids can interact with their daily dose of English. 

We were blessed to have two teachers on the visiting team ensuring this would be one of the best English rooms in Thailand. 

Young Cambodian Kindergarten boy washing his lunch dishes in a bowl of water on the ground before he can playPlaytime

The children are firstly encouraged to wash clean their own lunch boxes and cups. (I wish my kids would do this!)

After chores, the children are indulged with a little time to play around whilst the teachers ready themselves for the next activities.

We watched as they played their local games like jumping over legs adding height with feet and hands after each successful jump. We then taught them some of our own games like Ring-a-Rosy and Frisbee.
 Outside the schoolroom, the children play. This photo shows one boy standing and the others are blurred as they run around him.
Three young boys playing Frisbee outside the school in the yard.
Two girls sit on the ground opposite each other with their feet touching making a hurdle for the other girls to jump over

Next week
Stay tuned for more about our school visit in next week's post. Meet the team and take a look at life around the school.

Previous Posts on Thailand
If you want to catch up on previous posts, they are here:
. Part 1 of our visit to the school - HERE
. A look at life along the Canals in Bagkok - HERE
. Condoms, Hangover & Happiness - HERE

Thanks for stopping by. Feel free to share with your friends. Back to reality now...

About The Author

Photo of Nina Beilby. Sydney Australia. Photographer.
Nina Beilby is a professional photographer and photography educator based in Chatswood, Sydney, Australia. You can see more of her work at

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Thanks for visiting!


Yes you are right that education is the key to ending poverty. Besides study if we train students in some technical parts like clipping path service they can earn money by freelancing beside study. That way they can also remove poverty.

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