Obsessed about the damage he and the US military caused for the people of Vietnam, Paul George Harding, 68, was a paratrooper back in 1969 in the Air Force Brigade 173, which participated in the Binh Dinh – Lam Dong battlefield, has returned to Vietnam to teach English, free of charge. At 2pm of weekdays, the veteran starts his free English class in Trung Hoa ward, Cau Giay district, Hanoi. Sharing the reason why he comes to Vietnam, he said in his deep voice that he decided to leave his home and family to come to Vietnam and teach English without charge, in order to offset a portion of his guilt for the past actions of the US military during the war. "I'm very disappointed about my decision when participating in the war in Vietnam. At that time I was too young, 19 years old and I believed in the US government. Arriving in Vietnam, I realized that my decision was wrong. The memories about the war have haunted me all my life, destroying the peace in the depth of my heart. I … [Read more...] about US veteran teaching English free of charge to Vietnamese people
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A boy uses an interactive whiteboard at a pre-school in HCMC Some pre-schools in Ho Chi Minh City have equipped themselves with "interactive whiteboards," prompting mixed opinions from teachers, parents and education experts. When the new school year began early last month, Binh An pre-school in the city's District 2 announced it had bought an interactive board for VND180 million (US$ 8,533), according to Tuoi Tre newspaper. Half the cost of the board was paid for by the government, according to the school, and the rest will come from the pupils' parents via a VND15,000 ($0.71) per-month fee. Of course, some parents are upset they will have to subsidize the cost of a tool the school will have forever but their children may only use for a year or two. Others are questioning the plan for it's feasibility while others say it could help give students a technological leg-up. An interactive whiteboard is a large interactive display that connects to a computer. A … [Read more...] about Teaching Vietnam preschoolers on computers raises concerns
Editor's Note: Cathy Truong is a Vietnamese American who spent two years living in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. She submitted this story to Tuoitrenews from Vancouver, Canada, where she now lives. Truong discusses the issue of expats using sexual services in the southern city based on the personal experiences she amassed during her stay in Vietnam. Within a few months of moving to Ho Chi Minh City, I was surprised to find out about the large number of male expats and travelers alike that pay for commercial sex in the city. When I was in the US, within the Vietnamese community, I would sometimes hear about how men would go back to Vietnam to choi gai, an expression with sexual undertones meaning 'playing with the women.' It wasn't until I came to Saigon that I understood how readily available sex is and how frequently the men like to play. I found out about these rarely spoken of services from many of my male friends, who were willing to trust me enough to open up about their sex … [Read more...] about Why do city expats pay for sexual services?
VietNamNet Bridge - Educators say they cannot understand why the HCM City authorities do not think of recruiting English teachers from the UK, US or Australia, but have decided to employ Filipino teachers. The Hoang Hoa Tham High School in HCM City has been employing an English teacher from the US for the last many years. The teacher gives 16 teaching periods a week at the school and receives 20 dollars for a 45-minute period. … [Read more...] about The English teachers for the poor?
VietNamNet Bridge – Realizing the high demand for learning English for pre-school children, a lot of kindergartens in HCM City have been taught English as extracurricular activities. However, this has not been applauded by educators and psychologists. The problem is that the kindergartens' English teaching programs have been going in a spontaneous way, with different curriculums applied and teachers recruited from different sources. Meanwhile, no one can be sure if it is advisable to teach English to children at the small ages. … [Read more...] about Teaching students at nursery schools: children become guinea-pigs