Go Deep into Local School Districts and Promote Chinese Culture Chinese Culture Training Program for Local Primary School Teachers Successful Concludes at the Confucius Institute at George Mason University

[Source]    Confucius Institute at George Mason University [Time]    2010-12-29 09:43:15 

Chinese booth and exhibits

Seeing dozens of US primary school teachers uttering some simple Chinese words, teachers and volunteers from the Confucius Institute at George Mason University smiled happily.

This was a scene that appeared at the lecture hall of Ravensworth Primary School in Fairfax, Virginia on Dec. 6th. On that day, teachers and volunteers from the Confucius Institute at George Mason University conducted a training on basic Chinese language and Chinese culture for 45 teachers from 25 primary schools in Fairfax. The training consisted of 4 parts: a brief introduction to pronunciation of some important dynasties and historical figures in the history of China and simple knowledge about Chinese characters as well as pronunciation practice by the institute teacher Wang Lei; a PPT presentation introducing the life stories of China’s greatest thinker, Confucius, as well as his thoughts and their great influence on all aspects of the society in China by the institute’s volunteer Zhao Wei; a photo showcase displaying various places of interest and natural beauty across China; and an exhibition displaying silk, Chinese paintings etc, which helped the trainees have a taste of the unique charm of Chinese culture.

US primary school teachers trying out Chinese paper-cutting 

The Fairfax County where the Confucius Institute is located boasts the largest school district in the US. Therefore, since its establishment in 2009, the institute has committed itself to promoting Chinese language and culture in the local community. Thanks to cultural activities carried out in the past two years, the institute’s popularity and reputation has been greatly enhanced. When the institute’s Chinese Director Prof. Guo Fenglan learned the fact that local primary schools offered courses on “Ancient Civilized Countries (social study)” which involved basic knowledge about Chinese history, geography and culture but most of the lecturers knew little about China, she discussed with the US head about the possibility of undertaking the task to provide basic training to local primary and secondary school teachers in cooperation with local leading educational institutions. The proposal was agreed to by head of Social Study of the Fairfax County Public Schools system with great enthusiasm. After a survey and investigation, the institute decided to carry out a concentrated training to help the teachers have a fundamental understanding of Chinese history, geography and culture. The following questionnaire indicated that the teachers were satisfied with the training and that they were in urgent need of such trainings. They also expressed their hope that they would have further opportunities offered to them to learn about China.

Visiting various exhibits

The success of the training laid a sound foundation for the Confucius Institute’s and the Fairfax County Public Schools system’s further cooperation. In the coming year, the Confucius Institute will continue to exert its professional advantages and strive to further promote the local influence of Chinese language and culture.