National Chinese Language Conference 2019 Held in San Diego, the USA

[Source]    Confucius Institute Headquarters [Time]    2019-05-14 14:31:56 
 

On May 9th, local time, the 12th National Chinese Language Conference was held in San Diego, California, the USA. With the theme of “Towards the Future of Globalization”, this conference was jointly held by the Confucius Institute Headquarters, the College Board, and Asia Society. Over 1,300 Chinese language teachers, educational officials and industry experts from the USA and other eight countries attended the conference, jointly discussed the significance of cultural and language exchanges, and shared the experience and achievements in Chinese language teaching.

In his speech, Ma Jianfei, Deputy Chief Executive of the Confucius Institute Headquarters, Vice President and Secretary-General of the International Society for Chinese Language Teaching, expressed that, from the perspective of the global education, the second language teaching is an across-cultural educational activity and one of the keys to success is to respect, understand and trust different culture. Confucius Institutes are a model of China-foreign cooperative school running and a comprehensive expression of the global educational philosophy. For a dozen years, the number of students registered at the Confucius Institutes in the USA has totaled over 2 million and more than 1,300 scholarships have been provided. More than 22,000 educational workers and students have visited China and made special contributions to the promotion of mutual understanding and people-to-people and cultural exchanges between the two peoples.

He pointed out that teachers from China traveled thousands of miles to the USA and participated and supported the Chinese language education in the local areas, which received the attention and support from schools and colleagues in the USA. At the same time, they brought the new teaching philosophy and methods that they have learnt in the USA back to their posts in China and applied them to the practical teaching, which was a vivid reflection of global educational cooperation. The Confucius Institute Headquarters ensures that the Confucius Institute will continue to stick to the educational aims, conduct its operation in accordance with all countries’ educational tradition and global educational philosophy, and respect partner universities’ autonomy in running schools, so as to achieve openness and transparency as well as legitimacy and compliance. It will also continue to provide citizens in all countries with top-level Chinese language teaching services and make further contributions to the global education.

 

Anthony Jackson, Vice President of Asia Society pointed out that language learning is a path for communicating and understanding the culture and history of other countries. US students are in lack of understanding of the outside world, especially Asia, and thus greater efforts have to be made to enhance the Chinese language teaching in the USA, which is good for the development of US students. He also noted that one of the important jobs of Asia Society is to help more people in the USA fully realize the importance of learning Chinese and make more people benefit from Chinese language learning and the global education.

Jim Montoya, Chief of Membership, Governance, and Global Higher Education and Secretary of the Corporation, expressed in the conference that the new generation of students at the new era break the limitation of nationality and conventional thinking and hope to come into contact with new affairs and new thinking. The global issues require global solutions, which provide development opportunities and driving force for the global education. The outcomes of the global education will become the valuable wealth for the growth of students. Chinese language education plays an increasingly important role in the global education, which is beneficial to nurturing students to create a better future.

Linda Liu, Vice President of International at the College Board, noted in the conference that we should be clearly convinced of the important role and positive significance of education in the course of globalization. The global education should cultivate the new generation of talents that are urgently needed so that these talents can become an important force driving the international cooperation. Only by constantly innovating their educational thinking and models can educational workers meet students’ new demands for learning methods. She pointed out that secondary school students in the USA are becoming increasingly interested in foreign language learning and Chinese language is one of the most popular foreign languages and the growth rate of candidates for Advanced Placement (AP) Chinese language exam reaches 6%.

At the conference, Lean Markworth, a student at the Confucius Classroom at Mission Bay High School, California, performed a section of the Peking opera “The Drunken Beauty”, displaying the teaching outcomes in Chinese culture made by the Confucius Institutes in the USA.

The conference includes three sections, namely “Pathways and Trends for Global Education”, “Student Study Abroad Experience: Impact and Best Practices”, and “The Social Media Path to Chinese”, as well as over 90 breakout sessions concerning teaching evaluation, teaching method innovation, learning and occupational development and other aspects. During the conference, such activities as school visits and Chinese language teaching resource exhibition were also carried out.

Initiated in 2008, the National Chinese Language Conference is held annually. It is the largest Chinese language teaching seminar that is fully recognized by the US educational community, with a total of over 10,000 participants.