In-Service Training Workshop for Confucius Institute Directors opens at East China Normal University

[Source]    Shanghai Education News Network [Time]    2014-09-03 14:00:29 

Group photo of Madam Xu Lin (third from right, first row), Director General of the Office of Chinese Language Council International (Hanban) and Chief Executive of Confucius Institute Headquarters, and foreign directors of Confucius Institutes at the opening ceremony of the In-Service Training Workshop for Confucius Institute Directors on August 19, 2014 (by Liu Xiaojing)

SHANGHAI, August 21 (Shanghai Education News) - On August 19, the In-Service Training Workshop for Confucius Institute Directors held by the Office of Chinese Language Council International (Hanban) was opened at East China Normal University. 32 foreign directors of Confucius Institutes from 24 countries and regions such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Russia, Canada, Germany, Italy, South Korea and Japan gathered together in the Institute of Global Chinese Language Teacher Education at East China Normal University for a 10-day training workshop.

Madam Xu Lin, Director General of Hanban and Chief Executive of Confucius Institute Headquarters, said at the opening ceremony that the constant increase of the international influence of Confucius Institutes put forward a higher requirement for their development and construction. She added that the training workshop, targeted at the foreign directors and focusing on the theme of introducing and experiencing Chinese culture, could deepen their understanding of China, enhance the construction and management capabilities of Confucius Institutes, and take full advantages of the role of Confucius Institutes as bridges and ties between cultures of China and other countries.

It is said that China has begun to set up overseas Confucius Institutes —non-profit educational institutions that aim at teaching Chinese language and spreading Chinese culture since 2004 and so far 450 Confucius Institutes and 660 Confucius Classrooms have been established in 122 countries and regions.

During this workshop, the University will invite many first-class domestic and overseas scholars to discuss the history, culture, economy, and diplomacy of China as well as the construction of Confucius Institutes with foreign directors. Well-known scholars such as Xu Jialu, Qiao Yide, Jiang Haishan, Yang Jiemian, Yan Shiyun, Qian Wenzhong, Zhou Mingwei, and Cao Jingxing will hold a number of lectures on various special topics, including Chinese Confucian classics, diplomacy, economy, politics, traditional Chinese medicine, cultural exchanges between China and Western countries, etc.. Foreign directors will hold a series of seminars on topics such as “Sharing Experience of Planning Key Confucius Institute Projects”, “How to Introduce China to the World”, and “How to Attract Social Organizations and Chinese-funded Institutions to Participate in the Construction of Confucius Institutes”. They will also exchange experience of running Confucius Institutes and promote the communication, cooperation and information sharing among the Confucius Institutes worldwide.

In addition, the University has arranged various activities of cultural experience and field investigation. Foreign directors will visit the South Confucius Temple which is the predecessor of the Confucius Institute and then go to Huangpu River to experience the charm of Shanghai-style culture. They will also visit the Shanghai City History Museum to trace the history of Shanghai, the city of Quzhou to explore the culture of Zhejiang, and Quzhou No.2 High School to investigate the secondary education of contemporary China. Moreover, they will experience in person how to make dumplings and have a face-to-face contact with various forms of traditional Chinese culture such as Sichuan Opera, Kunqu Opera, and Pingtan (storytelling and ballad singing in Suzhou dialect), etc.. Then they will visit the Oriental Pearl Tower, Lujiazui Financial District and Shanghai Volkswagen Co. Ltd. to get a more comprehensive and in-depth understanding of contemporary China’s development status.

It is said that the East China Normal University has co-established eight Confucius Institutes with overseas counterparts. The Institute of Global Chinese Language Teacher Education at the University founded in 2008 is the first domestic institution of Confucius Institute Headquarters ( Hanban ). Its major task is to train local Chinese language teachers from foreign countries. So far it has completed the selection and training of Confucius Institute Chinese directors, government-funded teachers and volunteer Chinese teachers, finished the training of principals, students and teaching materials, and received more than 12,400 people.

by Liu Xiaojing & Tian Bolan