Chinese Embassy in Belarus held a film reception to assist local students with learning Chinese

On April 13, Chinese Embassy in Belarus organised a special fim reception for the local primary and secondary school students who are learning Chinese. About 80 attendees were invited, including Chinese volunteers from Confucius Institute and the teacher and student representatives from schools running Confucius classrooms and Chinese language courses. They watched together the Chinese movie “Flying Swords of Dragon Gate”.

Chinese Embassy in Belarus assist students with learning Chinese

Mr. Qiming Cui, Chinese Ambassador in Belarus, made a speech at first. He warmly welcomed the guests and said that with the relations between Belarus and China developping rapidly in recent years and the bilateral cooperation continuously deepened in various fields, Byelorussian and Chinese young people’s interest in learning the other country’s language and culture is increasing. More and more primary and secondary school students opt for Chinese courses in Belarus. Relevant activities would be carried out in the Embassy to help them understand better Chinese language and China.


Chinese Ambassador in Belarus made speech about learning Chinese

Byelorussian teachers and students watched the Chinese movie with strong interest, afterwards, Mr. Cui, the Ambassador, communicated actively with the students and answered their questions about Chinese history. At the end of the reception, the students showed the great pleasure to have such an opportunity to participate in, saying that the activity had offered them the medium of learning Chinese culture and enhanced their motivation to learn Chinese language and culture.

Filipino-Chinese students join Mandarin summer camp in Quanzhou

On 18 April, 104 Filipino-Chinese students from Chinese language Summer Camp 2016, with their 5 leading teachers, reached Quanzhou Normal University and started their Chinese learning journey for a period of 55 days.

Filipino-Chinese students from Chinese language Summer Camp 2016

During their stay, Quanzhou Normal University will offer several basic courses such as Chinese intensive reading, listening and speaking, reading, writing and so, as well as some skill courses such as folk customs, music, dance, Chinese film appreciation. In addition, trainings and sightseeing activities specialised in Chinese tradition are provided to the studnets, for instance, Southern Fujian culture presentation, calligraphy and Chinese Kung Fu, Quanzhou Culture tour, inter-college fellowship activity and natural local scenery tour. Through learning and cultural exchange in the camp, the students will gain a better understanding of Quanzhou city and the profound Chinese culture, which will strengthen the affection on their ancestral home. Filipino-Chinese students from Chinese language Summer Camp 2016

It is reported that the Chinese language summer camp for Filipino-Chinese students is hosted by China Overseas Exchange Association and COEA of Fujian province, sponsored by Mr. Yongcai Chan, famous overseas Chinese leader and honorary chairman of Quanzhou Normal University. The camp has been held 15 times since 2001, benefitting over millions of students. For Quanzhou Normal University this is the 6th succesfully organised summer camp in the campus.

paper cutting in Chinese Summer Camp

Craze of northern France in Chinese study

Confucius Institute in Artois University (Université d’Artois) was founded in France in 2008. The establishment of the organization is to create a cross-cultural communication platform and is open to all sections of society. In February 2015, the 1st session of China Arts Festival (Arts Chine) will soon be open here. Chinese opera, cultural exhibitions, as well as a series of cultural lectures will be displayed to the students with the support of their vice-president Stephen Rowley.

Craze in Chinese study in northern France

Aims to popularize Chinese culture

Stephen Rowley said, “To teach Chinese language, to organize Chinese language proficiency test and to train the Chinese teachers in France are the main goal of Confucius Institute. We will also hold someseminars, related courses and practice activities. Students can participate in the activities such as
Chinese calligraphy, music, Tai Chi, oriental cooking and Chinese drama. China plays a very important role
in the strategic layout of the university. We offer enlightenment courses of Chinese culture for the extracurricular activities. So far in France, Arras is the only city that Chinese courses are offered from primary schools to doctoral courses.” According to the vice-president of Artois University, more than 200 students there are learning Chinese and many others are already studying in China. Some of them are doing internships in China and some already settled down. In addition, the university plans to organize one summer camp, “We will invite Chinese students to stay for one month in Artois University. They will live together with French students here and get exposed to local French culture.”


Why would French people be interested in Chinese?

English language is still in the dominant position by far, but we have already seen a new force coming from Chinese language, which is the positive impact from the world’s largest economy and at the same time has attracted the attention of many French students. French students like Chinese life, some of them do business and settle down in China. Artois University will introduce a new Master degree of Chinese language (le chinois, langue étrangère) in September 2015.

Malaysian Consul-General: Learning Chinese is not only for work

The rise of China has made the country play an important role in the global stage and the inter-regional communication is increasing sharply. More and more foreigners are trying to master Chinese language with the emergence of “Mandarin fever”. Mr. Nasri Rahman, Consul-General of Malaysia in Kunming, is one of the learners. As a diplomat in China, he thinks that he can do a better job after mastering Chinese; in his personal point of view, the bilateral economic and trading relations between Malaysia and China have developed rapidly; the craze of learning Chinese is rising in all parts of the country. Regardless of politics and business, mastering Chinese language is undoubtedly a huge benefit for Malaysians.

Malaysian Consul-General: Learning Chinese is not only for work

My family members are all learning the language

“Chinese language is very important to me, not only for work but also for the frequent communication with local friends.” said Mr. Rahman in the meeting room of Consulate General of Malaysia in Kunming. In his opinion, with the close relation between Malaysia and China and the frequent communication, mastering Chinese language can better understand each other. Currently, the staff in the Consulate General and even his family members are all learning the language.

He told that he came to Kunming two years ago and started learning Chinese shortly after taking office. The Consulate General has built the cooperation with Yunnan Nationalities University; the university will specifically send one teacher majoring in Malay for giving classes twice a week and one textbook – Happy Chinese·Malay version.

“I feel that learning Chinese is very interesting. First of all, Chinese language is a very unique language. In Malaysia there are also a lot of Chinese schools and many people are learning the language. Learning Chinese can lead us to understand the Chinese culture. Through this language, we can enhance social connections and it plays a very crucial role in the economic and trading. Secondly, nowadays more and more foreigners come to China and learn Chinese in the universities, colleges or even private training institutes. So learning Chinese not only eases Malaysians to do business or to settle in China, but also is beneficial beyond the work.”

Speaking of his family members about learning Chinese, Mr. Rahman happily said that his wife is more diligent and she speaks Chinese better than him.11.16_Malaysia Consul-General_02

“She often goes to market to buy grocery, fruit and some other household items; she frequently uses Chinese, and she can bargain with the sellers in Chinese now.”

So far, Rahman is still learning elementary Chinese. Chinese writing is quite difficult for him. He “regrets” quite a bit that he didn’t learn Chinese before taking office. However, he didn’t have such condition at that time. He was not dispatched to Kunming from Malaysia but transferred from Consulate of Malaysia in Jordan.

According to Mr. Rahman, currently, in addition to the Consulate General in Kunming, Chinese language learning activities are carried out in many Consulate-General of Malaysia in other parts of China.

“Many of my friends, including Consul General of Malaysia in Shanghai and Guangzhou, speak Chinese very well. I believe that the projects or activities we are promoting will attract more Malaysians to come and learn Chinese now or in the future.”

So far, Malaysia has established one official cooperation project with Beijing Foreign Studies University in Beijing, sending exchange students mutually. He is also promoting aggressively the similar cooperation between China and Malaysia.

Malaysian government supports the development of Chinese schools

Speaking of the Chinese language education in Malaysia, Mr. Rahman said that Malaysian government treats equally to Chinese schools and other schools and offers same support on the school development.

According to the information fro11.16_Malaysia Consul-General_03m Xinhua News Agency, Malaysia is a multiracial country, where there are more than 500 million Chinese people, accounting for about 25% of the national population. The first Chinese school in Malaysia – Wu Fu Shu Yuan, was founded in 1819 in Penang. There are more than 1280 Chinese primary schools in Malaysia with about 63 million students; 60 Chinese secondary schools with 60,000 students; 3 Chinese colleges with about 5,000 students; and one newly established Chinese language education – based university.

“As we all know, Malaysia is a multicultural country. There are Chinese, Malay, Hindi and Arabic language schools to choose from. Currently Chinese language education is developing well in Malaysia and the government gives great support by offering the same treatment as other local schools. Inside the country people do have a very good learning environment and many can speak Chinese.”

He said that Malaysia and China have maintained a long-term friendly cooperative relations and the relation is still further improved. They send students to China to learn Chinese; the aim is not only to learn the language but also to promote the exchange and cooperation in political, economic and cultural fields between the two countries.

Speaking of the teaching method, Mr. Rahman said, since there are a lot of Chinese in Malaysia and Chinese schools as well, the environment to learn Chinese is very good, so what to learn is almost the same; everyone is learning the language with an integrated system.

Teaching them young: Tots learn to say ‘ni hao’ to Mandarin

Hong se, huang se, lu se… (red, yellow, green),” two-and-a-half-year old Sriana rattles off the colours of the rainbow in Mandarin when her mother points to a picture at their Powai residence in Mumbai. Another Mumbai toddler, three-year-old Rishaan, can sing Zhuni shengri kuai le (Happy birthday to you) in Mandarin with ease. Kolkata boy Ved, 6, insists that his parents call him ‘Da Ji’—a Chinese name he fancies.

Around the time they are learning to prattle in their mother tongue, quite a few urban tots are being enrolled in Mandarin classes. “These lessons are a gift to my daughter for her future,” says Sriana’s mother Chetna Kumar. The international business lawyer hired a tutor to teach Sriana the “language of the world’s fastest growing economy” when she was just 19 months old.

When Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg wooed China with a 30-minute interview in Mandarin last week, Kumar felt vindicated. Apart from spending Rs 700 per session on the tutor, she has also filled their home with books and puzzles with Chinese characters. She even wishes she had Chinese children in the neighbourhood for Sriana to play with.

In Mumbai, around 200 kids under 16—90 of them between 3 and 6 years old—are attending after-school Mandarin classes conducted by ‘Yeh China’ institute at eight schools. Founded by Usha Sahoo in 2010, Yeh China offers a special ‘Fun and Learn Chinese for Preschoolers’ programme that introduces tots to Mandarin through singing, stories and craft.

Eighty students have already enrolled at JBCN International, which tied up with Sahoo just last month to introduce a Mandarin class at their schools in Parel and Oshiwara. “At least 20 of them are just four- or five-year-olds,” says managing trustee Fatema Agarkar.

Apart from evening classes, Da Vinci Montessori School, which has centres at Babulnath and Marine Drive, and Shining Stars playschool in Andheri have also included Yeh China’s Mandarin course in their regular curriculum. “The worth of learning French and German is diminishing. Most parents were thrilled when we included a weekly Mandarin class because it will enhance their children’s future CVs,” says founder Ashani Hirway.

While Yeh China is the only institute that teaches toddlers, many others cater to children aged four and above. Han You Institute in Delhi’s Hauz Khas area is currently teaching 18 children aged 6-8 years. Inchin Closer in Mumbai is training 40 children aged between 5 and 12 years under the Young Chinese Learner’s Test programme. Around 20 children of the same age have signed up for the winter batch at the Chennai Chinese Institute and eight are enrolled at The School of Chinese Language in Kolkata.

“Three to four years ago, there was not a single child in our classrooms. Only adults and that too mostly those with business interests in China wanted to learn Mandarin,” says Charisma Saraff, vice-principal of the Kolkata school.

Today, Shiv Shankar Nayak, business development head at the Chennai institute, says he has had to turn down requests for classes from parents of younger children—some as young as 18 months—due to lack of infrastructure. “Several play schools have asked us to train their teachers so they can in turn teach Mandarin,” he says.

This year, the CBSE board introduced Mandarin as an optional subject in Class VI but parents consider it wiser to start younger. After all, the language is notoriously tough to pick up—one needs to know at least 5,000 characters to be proficient. “My husband and I had tried to learn Mandarin but we found it too difficult,” says Dinky Shah, whose son Rishaan attends the Mandarin class at Da Vinci.

Several studies by neuroscientists and linguists have indicated that children are capable of learning multiple languages in the first five years. Enrolling toddlers for foreign language training has therefore become a norm in the US and UK. But Nazia Vasi, founder of Inchin Closer, believes the same trend should not be “blindly followed” in India. “Unlike American children who speak only English, our children already grow up speaking English, Hindi and their mother tongue so adding another language to the list can put undue pressure on them,” she says. Inchin Closer does not teach children under five.

Kumar, however, says there is no question of burden as there are no set goals. “We let Sriana set the pace of her class. If she is bored, the lesson ends.”

Sahoo says her module attempts to make children fall in love with the language. Walk into her session at the Da Vinci Montessori and you will see tots trying to eat noodles with chopsticks. Ask them about their favourite food and they scream in unison, “miantiao” (noodles). A Chinese puppet called Papa Miantiao — he has noodle-like orange locks — is a regular feature in their class.

Article source:


The 7th Chinese Bridge – Chinese Proficiency Competition for foreign college students came to the end

On November 1st, the 7th Chinese Proficiency Competition for college students in the world – Chinese Bridge – came to a close in Yunnan Normal University. The competition “Chinese Bridge” has been held in Yunnan for three consecutive years.

7th Chinese Bridge - Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students

The competition was hosted by the headquarter of Confucius Institute, National Hanban and Yunnan provincial government; it was organized by Education Department of Yunnan Province, Yunnan Normal University and Yunnan Broadcasting Station; and it was on the theme of “Learn Chinese Double Your World”. A total of 390 teachers and students from 76 countries participated in the competition, with more participating countries and contestants than all the previous competitions. During the 11 days, the contestants took part in the written test of Chinese language and culture, Chinese speaking competition, Chinese talent competition, group intercontinental tournament and group finals. They also joined in Yunnan ethnic cultural activities, Chinese and foreigner students’ get-together, family cultural activities and overseas Chinese language education forum.

The group finals is divided into four aspects: Q&A, Lightning Round, Friendly Match and Keynote Speech on “I want to be the champion”, which test the Chinese proficiency level and the strain capacity. After four fierce competitions with five teams – South Africa team, USA 3 team, Mongolia team, Germany team and Australia 1 team, Germany team finally gained the championship.

On the finals, all the contestants performed together a dance – Dancing Continents, a sitcom – Journey of Tea Leaves and a musical drama – Colorful Yunnan, which won warm applause from the audience.

United Nations show love of Chinese calligraphy

On August 1st, He Yong, head of United Nations Chinese group said in Wuhan that Chinese calligraphy is becoming popular in UN and currently more than 300 people are learning calligraphy. However, on the contrary, many Chinese often forget how to write the characters while lifting the pen. Ge Changyong, vice chairman of Hubei Calligraphy Association said it is worth an introspection in China.

United Nations' love of Chinese calligraphy      United Nations' love of Chinese calligraphy

At the same day, an art exhibition of UN officials’ calligraphy work was held in Qintai Grand Theatre, displaying more than 60 pieces of calligraphy work by UN officials, of which UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s calligraphy work “Qu Ze Quan” was exhibited for the first time in Wuhan and the second time in China.

UN official Terence is getting obsessed about Chinese calligraphy. He said that every Chinese character interprets thousands of years history and profound Chinese culture, “this is the treasure of the world”. He Yong said that currently a calligraphy class is given in UN every week, more than 300 people are eager to attend. Many UN officials showed their calligraphy skills at the exhibition.

Mr. Ge was deeply moved by the foreign friends’ passion on the calligraphy. With the popularity of computers, many Chinese often forget the character while writing in pen, not to mention practicing calligraphy. “Calligraphy is the key to Chinese traditional culture. In comparison to the UN officials’ love of calligraphy, the inheritance of Chinese calligraphy to Chinese people is apparently far not enough.”

Chinese language becomes a great advantage in Brazilian job market

Recently, Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Brazil and attended the BRICS Summit held in Fortaleza. Fang Ji, Vice president of the Brazilian Chinese Association and China head of Brazilian Elite Entrepreneurs Association, took part in the related activities during the visit of President Xi. A few days ago, Fang Ji introduced to the reporter the related activities details and relation between China and Brazil in her eyes.

7.22_ ChinaBrazil_12

China Youth Daily: During President Xi’s visit in Brazil, what activities did you participate in?

Fang Ji: I attended the President Xi’s 3-day activities in the Brazilian capital – Brasilia: President Xi’s speech at Brazilian National Congress on July 16th; the military parade, Chinese and Brazilian artists’ performance, which President Xi and Brazilian President Rousseff watched together on 17th; President Xi’s meeting with overseas Chinese in Brazil, the employee representatives from Chinese-funded enterprises and consulate personnel on 18th.

What impressed me most was that on July 18th, after President Xi took photos with us, he was standing less than 2 meters away from me and communicating amiably with us. I still remember that President Xi told us that it was his third time to visit Brazil. The first time was in 1996 when he came as deputy secretary of Fujian province and secretary of Fuzhou to Fortaleza, where he signed a memorandum on the establishment of sister province between Fujian province and Fortaleza state; the second time was in 2009 when he visited Brazil as vice president, during that visit he attended 80 meetings and signed more than 50 projects.

China Youth Daily: This year is the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Brazil. It has been 27 years since your first arrival in 1987, how do you think of the development of bilateral relations between two countries during 27 years?

Fang Ji: Let me take things around me as the example. When I first came to Brazil, there were quite many small Chinese local traders, but their influence in Brazil is very limited and Brazilians were not much aware of China.

In recent years, with the development of China’s economy, the popularity of Chinese culture is greatly boosted in Brazil. One of the most obvious examples is the boom of learning Chinese language. In Sao Paulo State University, only 3 students enrolled in Chinese classes 8 years ago. But these years, the Chinese classes there are mostly fully enrolled and more classes are often added to meet the needs. Nowadays in Brazil, knowing Chinese is a very big advantage of employment. One can usually be recruited in priority and get a relatively higher salary. Therefore, there are especially many Chinese language classes in Brazil. The Brazilian Chinese Economic and Trade Exchange Center where I am working in is also promoting the Chinese education and study to the students.

China Youth Daily: What is China like in your Brazilian friends’ eyes?

Fang Ji: In the eyes of most Brazilians, like its high-speed rail, China is in the stage of rapid development. Brazilians are fascinated by Chinese culture and Chinese goods with high price performance ratio are favored by them as well. In Brazil, “Canton Fair” is well-known and Chinese cuisine is especially popular.

China Youth Daily: You have been working for many years in Chinese and Brazilian economic and trade exchange. How do you think of the development of the economic and trade relations between China and Brazil?

Fang Ji: The economic and trade relations between China and Brazil have absolute complementarity. In 2009, China has surpassed the U.S., becoming Brazil’s largest trading partner, largest export destination and largest source of import; in 2011, instead of China and Russia, China and Brazil are becoming the two countries that created the largest bilateral trade volume among BRICS; in the last two years, Brazil has also listed Top 10 of China’s largest trading partners.