You are here

Activity 1: Life of a Young Cambodian

To introduce the unit on Cambodia, I read the short story, "Who Belongs Here?", by Margy Burns Knight (available at the Belle Sherman Elementary School Library), to the whole class. The book tells a story about a young boy who survived the war in Cambodia and came to America. Several issues are discussed about life during the war, as well as life for a young Cambodian in America.

After reading "Who Belongs Here?":

1. Show maps of Cambodia and review surrounding countries.

2. Review the climate of Cambodia.

3. As a whole group, discuss life in a refugee camp (What is a refugee camp, where were refugee camps located and how did the people get to the camps).

4. Briefly discuss how life in America is different from life in Cambodia -culture, government, religion. (Draw all responses from the students to gain an understanding about what they know).

5. Find out what students know about the war in Cambodia and address any questions they have.

6. Discuss how Americans can help make the transition to America easier for Cambodians.