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Cultural Education Exchange in Lower School

By Shannon O'Connor, communications coordinator
Our youngest Torreys welcome Cambodian teaching fellow.
Kindergarten students learned how to say hello and write their names in Khmer, the official language of Cambodia, from teaching fellow Chareya Long. LJCDS is hosting Ms. Long through the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative Professional Fellows Program.

Ms. Long engaged the class in a discussion about world languages before distributing each student’s pencil-scripted name. The young Torreys practiced listening and following instructions, honed their fine motor skills as they traced carefully over their name, and expressed creativity with their own inspired marker art on the surrounding page space. Up next, Ms. Long will conduct a show-and-tell of Cambodian currency with a discussion about world currencies and an age-appropriate explanation of the exchange rate to U.S. dollars. 

During her four-week fellowship, Ms. Long will assist in kindergarten and Early Childhood Center classrooms and meet with members of the administration and faculty to learn about different aspects of school operations. She completed a rigorous application process and was selected from an extensive and highly competitive field of applicants for this opportunity. Ms. Long’s fellowship goals include learning about staff retention and professional development, learning about philanthropy to provide financial aid to low-income families, and operations management. 

As the founder and managing director of Khdey Srolanch Kindergarten, Ms. Long provides early childhood education and special needs education services to children between 2–5 years old in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh. She is a mentor to female entrepreneurs through SHE Investments, a culturally tailored incubator and accelerator program in Cambodia. 

The Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative Professional Fellows Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State and is supported in its implementation by the American Councils for International Education and other Institute Partners. Ms. Long's fellowship has been made possible by La Jolla Country Day School's partnership with the San Diego Diplomacy Council.


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