joined our projects in Zhuoyue English College
Please you us about some of your most enjoyable moments of the trip?
I really loved being on the trip with so many international students. I would never had met any of these amazing people without this program. I loved getting to know my teaching assistants and I think I will be keeping in touch with them for a long time. I also enjoyed teaching the Chinese students that would be coming to America as exchange students. I loved sharing my culture with them and hearing their thoughts on it. They also taught me so much about their culture through the comparison of the two. I loved exploring Yangshuo as well.
Which were the highlights of the lessons, cultural excursions and outdoor activities?
One of my favorite cultural experiences was the chinese cooking experience. We were able to make traditional chinese dishes and then enjoy them together! I also enjoyed doing taichi with my American exchange students. I got very close to them throughout my time teaching them and engaging in cultural experiences together brought us even closer together.
How would you say the overall experience has benefited you?
I have been studying Chinese for two years now and this experience gave me the opportunity to practice the language with native speakers. I learned that I was actually able to survive in China with the language I have learned and I came back feeling confident and ready for my next year of studies. I also want to work in foreign relations with China after I graduate. This trip gave me the opportunity to see the culture first hand, which is such a rare and amazing opportunity.
What was the best thing about your experience in China?
There were so many incredible experiences while I was there. Being able to interact with the people and learn from them firsthand about China, their language, and their culture was something I will never forget. I enjoyed getting to know the children and knowing that I was able to help ease their nerves about going to the United States.
Would you recommend participating to a friend and if so why?
Yes I would! But I would highly recommend that they try to get placed at a different school. While I loved my experience and enjoyed teaching, I felt like Zhuoyue was quite unorganized. I spent the first two weeks teaching exchange students headed to America. I thought this was such an incredible experience. However, the three weeks after were dedicated to teaching the summer camp children. The school utilized drama and plays as a way to teach English, but it was very very unorganized and it did not feel like I was having a huge impact on these children.