With only two months to go until the high school national exam, an expert on Khmer literature has urged students to improve their Khmer writing skills in order to get high score within this subject.
Khat Sothy, a 12th-grade teacher of Khmer at Prek Leap High School, said Khmer and mathematics account for the largest portions of the national exam score, at 125 points each.
Based on his experience, he said, students tend to think of Khmer as an easy subject, as it is their national language.
This is a mistaken belief, however, the teacher warned. Using Khmer to communicate in daily life is not the same as understanding the language at the technical level, he said, adding that learning this is just as complicated as studying any other language.
“They [students] should strengthen their grammar, spelling and essay-writing skills,” Mr. Sothy said, adding that improved writing and reading ability added to their general knowledge.
Hol Chhaily, who received an A grade in the 2014-2015 national exam, said she spent a year studying for her national exam and that her preparations included studying every subject, including Khmer.
“Personally, I prefer taking the time to understand what’s being taught, rather than just memorizing lessons,” she said.
Oung Monyreasey, another A grade recipient and a native of Battambang province, said she spent only a month studying for the exam.
However, she worked very hard every day within that month of preparation. Echoing Ms. Chhaily, she said she studied all subjects and that Khmer was one she tried to focus on.
“My view is that students preparing for the national exam should try to study every day, but they should take a break occasionally, too, if the pressure gets to them,” Ms. Monyreasey said.
The high school national exam is divided to two categories: the social sciences and the hard sciences.