Arts-Based Education

In Cambodia, over half of the population is under the age of 25, and only 64% of adult women are able to read and write.

Education plays a vital role in youth development. Skateistan Cambodia provides a safe and supportive environment for Cambodian youth to learn and build self-esteem through self-expression. Our arts-based classes are an excellent forum for youth to express their opinions on the issues that concern them and share their visions for the future. Skateistan students express themselves in educational workshops that explore a variety of themes using creative arts such as photography, film production, sculpture, painting, illustration and more.

Since our students come from a range of backgrounds, Skateistan uses art to “level the playing field.” Arts-based education is accessible to all youth, regardless of education levels.

Ideal Phnom Penh Photo Project

Students have been working hard on a new project at Skateistan Cambodia: Ideal Phnom Penh.

Thanks to an exceptional donor, Skateistan Cambodia received a whole bunch of new media equipment, including a number of digital point and shoot cameras for student use, a new digital SLR camera and a media computer. We immediately put the equipment to good use.

Professional photographers Samual James and Rick Valenzuela volunteered to spend the afternoon doing a photography workshop with all staff, teaching them the basics of light and composition. Everyone had a blast exploring the neighbourhood and learning how to maximize the quality of their photos.

International Women's Day at Skateistan Cambodia

"The people that think of skateboarding as a sport only for boys are wrong. I think the word sport means that girls and boys can play together." -Tin, 20, Skateistan Cambodia Teacher and Youth Leader

Skateistan Cambodia celebrated International Women’s Day this March with 70 youth. Around 55 girls and 15 boys attended the event, which focused on female participation in sports, and provided an opportunity for the small but growing number of girls who skate in Phnom Penh to meet one another to make art, relax, play games and show off their talent at skateboarding.

Continuing Creative Arts in Cambodia

The kids at the guesthouse have been hard at work; both at shredding the park and in our weekly art sessions. Skateistans’ art classes are quickly gaining popularity in the neighborhood, with more and more kids showing up every week. Last week, Tin and Chanthou led a lesson on sgraffito, an art technique that has been used in Cambodia and the rest of the world for centuries. The kids learned all about the technique, which involves applying different mediums in layers and then scratching away at the uppermost layer to reveal the colours underneath. Then came the fun part – Creating their own sgraffiti masterpieces!

Carnival Khmer Style!

Skateistan was thrilled to hit the road this past weekend to take part in Khmarnival 2012 in Sihanoukville!  

Eleven of our students from PSE (Pour un Souire d’Enfant) and 5 staff members crammed their bags, skateboards, safety gear, costumes, props, and smiles into the van for what promised to be a most memorable weekend.  

The whole crew dressed up and participated in the march, skating in the streets promoting “Safety First” – the theme of the Carnival.  

Skate and Create!

In addition to offering skateboard instruction, Skateistan Cambodia aims to establish weekly art instruction as a creative supplement and tool for self-expression, empowerment and community involvement. 

Skateistan’s art classes provide students with an atmosphere of creative exploration, artistic education, and most importantly – fun!  Recently we held a morning art class for our neighborhood skateboarding students.  This time around the art curriculum focused on learning about the different components of a skateboard, from the different mechanical parts to the idea of a skateboard graphic.  The children then designed and drew their very own graphic complete with their name.  The students chose their own color schemes for their boards and wheels, cut and pasted their boards together, all while learning both the Khmer and English vocabulary words along the way.  Their recent skateboard creations, along with future art projects, will visually liven up our Skateistan Cambodia headquarters and will truly make Skateistan Cambodia a community space in which to Skate and Create!