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UCPS Discover China Day has special meaning at MRHS this year

What better way to Discover China than with our Nanjing students from China! The Confucius Institute at Pfeiffer University hosted a Discover China Day at Marvin Ridge High School on Friday, February 13. Students from Mrs. Hu Mueller’s Chinese class as well as Chinese language students from other middle and high schools in UCPS participated in this cultural experience.

Students learned about many traditional Chinese art forms including paper cutting, brewing tea, calligraphy and folk dance; they were able to cut their own paper art designs, drink traditional Chinese tea, draw their own calligraphy work and learn a snippet of the famous Chinese peacock dance, originally performed by Yang Li-Ping.

The first class Mrs. Mueller’s students went to was paper-cutting class. The teachers from the Confucius Institute presented the history of paper-cutting. This delicate form of art was originally a window bloomer. Before glass windows were created, the Chinese used a thin sheet of white paper as a window, and around Chinese New Year, they would put up decorative paper cut outs to celebrate the new year - this is where the name window bloomers came from. Our students cut out three designs - a panda, a Chinese lantern, and the Chinese character ‘喜‘ which means happiness.

Next up was the tea-brewing class. The teachers gave students an account of the process of making tea, the differentiations between different types of teas, and the myth behind the founding of tea. A demonstration of how to properly brew tea from a China tea set and how to serve tea was given. Students were able to taste green tea, black tea, and flower tea. Students showed more of their artistic talents in the calligraphy session. Each student painted their own ink bamboo painting as well as a panda painting. To mark their work, the Nanjing students taught each student how to write their name in Chinese characters. In the last session, students got up on their feet and learned the peacock dance. The peacock dance was a graceful and energetic dance that joyfully brought Discover China day to a great ending.

Each year, the Confucius Institute surprises us with something new to learn about the Chinese culture. IB senior Noah Holzberg said, “Last year, I remember they held a business etiquette class that I thought was really insightful. After going to Nanjing this past summer, I really enjoyed rediscovering China again through all the cultural classes that the institute held.” These cultural classes was truly a way for students to discover China; IB seniors Noah, Jin, and Eric went to Nanjing, China this past summer with the school, and they had said that all the activities - paper cutting, calligraphy, and Chinese folk dancing, were all activities that they had done in China. The students had a wonderful cultural experience of discovering China, especially with the Nanjing students. Thank you to the Confucius Institute for this wonderful experience -谢谢 (xie xie)!

Written by: Laura Kem, Students
Posted: Mar 01, 2015 by Lisa Justice

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