Dong Thap

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I have been in the Mekong Delta for the past two weeks working at Dong Thap Community College. Dong Thap is the province. Cao Lanh is a small town three hours from Saigon…I mean…Ho Chi Minh City. (…Let’s talk about changing the name a city of 7.5 million people from a name it’s had since the 1860s!!)

Cao Lanh has been both quiet and busy. There are 2500 students at the College and a few pretty nice networking labs. We installed Moodle (twice, actually…an English Server and a Vietnamese server), talked about switches, routers, lifelong learning, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things. I even got to teach Cisco’s Packet Tracer program to forty-five IT students. I was surprised at how easy it was to teach IT even though none of the students spoke English. An IP address is an IP address and a ping is a ping…no English required!

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I arrived one day before the full moon…and that’s important because the pagodas were ready for the Moon Festival…I joined two young volunteers from Italy and Spain to visit the Hoa Long Pagoda.

On the weekend I travelled to Ho Chi Minh City/Saigon and joined a few friends from Hanoi and about a hundred new friends for the 1200th Saigon Hash. My camera decided that the serious rain on Saturday was something I should have protected it from and now it refuses to work.

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Luckily, I had a backup camera, because today we went to the Gao Giong Eco-tourism area. We paddled through beautiful marshes and enjoyed a very traditional lunch…Along with Lotus seeds and morning glories, sour soup with eel, field rat, snake head fish, and snails were all on the menu…(If this sounds a bit fear factor, remember…in Nova Scotia we eat lobster and they aren’t very pretty.)

This evening is a cultural exchange evening for the English class. Spanish dance, Italian games, and Vietnamese songs…I’m looking forward to it!

Some more photos…

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Ideas Worth Spreading in Vietnamese

Ted

I have been a regular viewer of TED talks for years and I have used more than one of these videos in my classes. I was pleasantly surprised when I discovered that over 950 of these talks have been translated to Vietnamese. As a bonus, for those of us who don’t have reliable bandwidth in the classroom or in the office, these talks are downloadable for future viewing. Just make sure you check the “Include subtitles” check box when you download.  Here’s the complete list of translated talks: http://www.ted.com/translate/languages/vi

Want a sample?…English instructors may be interested in Jay Walker’s explanation of why two billion people around the world are trying to learn English in his four minute talk entitled The World’s English Mania….