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Communicating in Khmer: Reading and Writing for Beginners (includes CD-ROM)
by Chhany Sak-Humphry
$50.00 + $3.58 (flat rate priority mail; USA ONLY)

Communicating in Khmer 1: An Interactive Intermediate Level Khmer Course (includes CD-ROM)
by Chhany Sak-Humphry
$50.00 + $3.58 (flat rate priority mail; USA ONLY)

Communicating in Khmer 2: An Interactive Intermediate Level Khmer Course (includes CD-ROM)
by Chhany Sak-Humphry
$50.00 + $3.58 (flat rate priority mail; USA ONLY)

To order, or for foreign shipping information, contact the author at
For sample lessons and other information about the Khmer program at the University of Hawai`i, visit:
UH Khmer Language Program website
Website for Khmer Language Classes


Communicating in Khmer: Reading and Writing for Beginners is a fundamental resource for the acquisition of modern Khmer for learners on all levels. The materials, comprising a book and CD, focus on the theoretical and practical aspects of the reading and writing system of modern spoken Khmer. Once the beginner learns the symbols of the system together with the sounds of language, s/he will have mastered the rudiments of reading Khmer. On the practical side, the learner will follow the materials as they have been systematized: s/he learns to read and write by applying herself/himself to texts and activities of progressive sophistication. The learner who completes the material will be well grounded in modern written Khmer. S/he will be well prepared for the challenge of materials of increasing complication, and will have added a new and invaluable dimension to her/his knowledge of language, literature and culture of this admirable people.



Cambodia is a land steeped in the rich traditions of a gentle people. Even before the ancient temples of Angkor Wat, the people of this land have flourished throughout the ages while maintaining the cultural heritage of their beloved country. The soft beauty of the Khmer language echoes the history of days gone by, while adapting to the challenges of the modern world. This series of lessons is a gateway into the rich cultural traditions of the Khmer people, and is a window onto the Khmer language. Designed for intermediate learners, Communicating in Khmer: An interactive Intermediate Level Khmer Course provides the reader with a fascinating tour of the traditions of the country, with video clips and cultural notes throughout. The presentation of the material is engaging, with references to not only the vocabulary, but also the often-overlooked nuances of their translation. Formatted with 2 CD-ROMs and 2 companion student manuals, the language can be seen, heard and experienced firsthand. In each chapter there are activities and exercises that teach the student various ways to formulate sentences, recognize the vocabulary, and truly master the language. The overall effect is a multi-dimensional representation of the beauty of the Cambodian language and its people.


This manual contains 15 lessons representing a second-year Khmer language course taught at the university level. The lessons range in terms of difficulty from intermediate to advanced second-year level. Each lesson focuses on particular Khmer cultural and social themes. The general layout of each lesson is followed by an organized communicative activity as follows:
  • Text in Khmer script- an introduction to a text, which can be used as a reading or listening activity.
  • Picture matching - which can be used as pre- or post-reading activities.
  • True/false - general knowledge concepts.
  • Sequencing - which look for detailed information about the text.
  • Multiple choices - which reinforce the comprehension of the text.
  • Word matching-opposite meaning, same meaning or translation into English.
  • Sentence completion -grammar is expressed in context.
  • Word order - teaching the student the proper order of sentence structure.
  • Writing activity - creating sentences or composing a text on a given theme or topic. This activity can be presented first as an oral or speaking activity before learners write out their work in Khmer.
  • Video-audio clips - show authentic Khmer life (CD-ROM only).
  • Cultural notes - enrich the text with pictures and give the reader an understanding of Khmer social and cultural life (not in CD-ROM).
  • Vocabulary list - Khmer-English. Some words are transcribed phonetically and have audio sound for the learner to practice by him/herself (CD-ROM).
All of these activities may be taken as sample guidelines for the instructor or the self-directed learner. My intention is for those who use the CD-ROM and/or the manual to be creative and devise to put together their own activities to fit their classroom or individual needs. There are many well-publicized classroom strategies and activities that can be used interactively and communicatively with these 15 Khmer texts which teachers can implement in the classroom or in their own curriculum.