Topics in Focus 'Chinese Fever' Across the Pacific
CNTV reports (January 19th, Topics in Focus): Not long ago, a Confucius Statue was erected in front of the Chinese History Museum at the east side of Tian'anmen Square. As a figure that is representative of traditional Chinese culture, Confucius is also becoming known to a growing number of people across the Pacific. So far, more than 70 Confucius Institutes have been established in the U.S., providing a chance for Americans to gain a better understanding of China. Recently a correspondent from CCTV conducted an interview in a Confucius Institute in Chicago.
Confucius Institutes are established across 44 U.S. States
Entering U.S. Walter Payton College Preparatory High School's teaching building, we can see the Confucius Institute: it is accommodated in the first classroom on our left. This Confucius Institute in Chicago was jointly established by Chicago Public Schools (CPS), Hanban(the Office of Chinese Language Council International) and East China Normal University on May 10th, 2006. It is responsible for the Chinese Language Program in 43 CPS Schools and involves nearly 12,000 students.
During the interview, the correspondent found out that the Chinese language class featured a few children that have visited China through a Sino-American cultural exchange program. They said that they were impressed by China, its interesting culture and its modern cities.
Of course, the majority of the American children here studying Chinese at the Confucius Institute have not yet had a chance to visit China, however, they are all very eager to visit and travel in China. They are very eager to know about China. Their study at the Confucius Classroom has not only provided them with a chance to learn Chinese language, but also allowed for them to learn about Chinese culture.
The intentions of opening the Confucius Institutes were providing formal, authoritative Chinese language textbooks as well as the most formal, primary channel of Chinese language teaching for all global Chinese language learners. Their purposes are also those of promoting Chinese language, Chinese culture and Chinese studies.