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Chicago’s De La Salle Institute celebrated Chinese New Year with Cultural Division, TECO in Chicago
Chicago’s De La Salle Institute celebrated Chinese New Year with Cultural Division, TECO in Chicago
Chicago’s De La Salle Institute celebrated Chinese New Year with Cultural Division, TECO in Chicago

 

A Chinese class of 37 students, taught by Mr. Josh Wang, from Chicago’s De La Salle Institute, visited the Cultural Division of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Chicago on February 15th to celebrate Chinese New Year.  They received a warm greeting from the hosts, General Baushuan Ger and Director Kuo Chen Chen.

 
General Ger and Director Chen first welcomed each student, and wished everyone a Happy Year of the Snake, to which the students responded with some newly-learned Chinese New Year greeting phrases. The group discussed Taiwan’s cultural and Chinese New Year customs and responded to the students’ eager and endless questions. Afterwards, they held a trivia contest in which General Ger and Director Chen asked students questions about Taiwan, the Lantern Festival and Chinese New Year. Students vied with one another for who could answer correctly first for an award of small prizes and red envelopes from the hosts. By the end of the game, all the students had a better understanding of Taiwan and Chinese New Year.
 
Afterwards, the Cultural Division put on the vibrant film, “A Night of Magic, the Lantern Festival in Taiwan”, which showed tableaus such as Taiwan’s picturesque Lantern Festival and images of colorful fireworks exploding from the former tallest building in the world, Taipei 101. The film also vividly introduced the origin and history of Chinese New Year, one segment of which depicted the life story of a 100 year old expert craftsman of lanterns. This broadened the students’ knowledge of Taiwan to more than just knowing Chinese New Year customs, to also include a comprehension of Taiwan’s economic transformation to economic prosperity. After students enjoyed light refreshments prepared by the Cultural Division, everyone took a group photo to conclude the visit.
 
Mr. Wang, currently a math and Chinese teacher at De La Salle Institute, expressed that all the students he brought to visit today had already studied Chinese for one to two years and had a strong interest in Chinese culture. He believes that the Chinese language’s position in the world is on the ascendancy; in the U.S., interest in learning Chinese is already on par with other languages. In his opinion, Taiwan’s teaching of Chinese language and culture has a number of unique and special characteristics. It has a special blend of modern and traditional elements, is freely expanding, and has diverse cultural characteristics. This gives Taiwan a potential foothold to take the dominant position on the Chinese language stage. He suggested that Taiwan should grasp this opportunity by establishing with every foreign teaching organization a cultural exchange and cooperative teacher training program. In this way, Taiwan can use Chinese language education as a means to strengthen Taiwan’s status and international visibility.