When I was in high school, my school holidays were a time for sleeping in, watching television, and playing computer games. Needless to say, my time away from school was neither exciting nor productive! For the 49 students at Chanleas Dai Junior High School who chose to participate in PEPY’s art workshop, however, their month off consisted of all sorts of creative, fun, and interesting endeavors.
The workshop, which was led by local artist Srey Mao and PEPY teachers Lida and Sarakk, saw students engaging in many activities from calligraphy to making insects out of seed pods, and utilizing natural materials for art. They also participated in team-building exercises, public speaking, and writing and illustrating their own stories. Students told us that they had an amazing time, remarking that they were able to create interesting things, as well as develop their confidence through presentations and performance art.
At the end of the workshop, a graduation ceremony was organized in recognition of the students’ achievement and we were all invited to attend. Pulling up to the junior high school on the morning of the ceremony, we didn’t quite know what to expect. When we arrived, the room was teeming with excited students and proud parents, who had come to support and celebrate their children’s significant achievement. Beautiful and colorful artwork was displayed around the creative learning space, and a movie documenting the month-long workshop was projected onto the wall. The individual certificates were handed out by select student presenters who prepared the presentation in both English and Khmer!
It was an absolute pleasure to be a part of the graduation ceremony, and to see the amazing works of art that the students created. The photos speak for themselves, really. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!