Before I arrived in America, I heard varied opinions of American classes and kids. I felt really horrified when I thought that I had to face the challenges. It almost ruined my first ten days before the school started in Gilmore Academy. Anyhow things happened as they should happen.

The first class seemed not as bad as I had imagined many times before. Maybe they were curious about the new appearance from China. This is the third year for my Eighth Graders to learn Chinese. I tried to add something current happening in China besides the requested curriculum. The things which I couldn’t stand were that they can freely go to the bathroom, drink water, see the nurse and whatever. Actually I didn’t like to be interrupted while teaching, but it’s allowed in American classes. I had no choice but to adapt to it.

Here inside Gilmore Academy, what impressed me most was the Heritage Festival on October 24th. Actually it started on the night of October 23rd. It is said that more than four hundred parents, teachers and students gathered in the school cafeteria. As they tasted the real, international foods provided by school, they could also appreciate the posters presenting various food cultures from different countries. It’s a pity I was not present that night.

The next day, I was asked to help one of my homeroom teachers. I accompanied over ten students to walk around the second floor. On the door of each classroom, the signs showed the themes of their project through which to explore different cultures. Inside each classroom, you could see different posters, in front of each poster, there were two or more students ready to explain their posters. They were about different countries, fictional stories from all over the world, games from different countries, inventions, sports and music. The school schedule gave each group a certain time in each classroom, so you could spend time learning about their projects. I learnt a lot from what the kids had researched.

One girl told me about her picture, the ribbon indicated connection, link together, she hoped we would live in a global world; She drew doves to wish peaceful life; the cross she drew is because of her religion, she wishes the friends to be loyal, faithful to each other.

After that, some Chinese University students on an exchange program from Bridgewater State College came to see what’s going on in Gilmore Academy. The superintendent, Dr. Nembirkow, gave us a short speech. We were surprised to hear his colorful experiences and his broad view of the world. He told us the purpose of teaching nowadays is to educate the global citizens. That’s why Gilmore Academy held the Heritage Festival. They wanted the kids to know about the world. At last, he wished us a fruitful school year.

I do believe everybody learns a lot from the Heritage Festival, it influences us from different aspects. It promoted and celebrated international-mindedness. I look forward to experience more fresh things here.

U.S.-China Teachers Exchange Program

U.S.-China Teachers Exchange Program

Between 1996 and 2014, the U.S.-China Teachers Exchange Program, established with funding from the Freeman Foundation, sent American K-12 teachers to China and brought Chinese secondary school teachers to the United States. Since the program began, 116 American teachers taught in Chinese secondary schools, and 332 Chinese teachers taught in American elementary, middle, and high schools. The Chinese teachers typically spent a school year teaching Chinese language and culture or English as a second language in American schools across the country.

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