Pupils’ lessons go on display
Calligraphy, a tea ceremony, tai chi, traditional drumming and dancing are just a few of the activities on display at Confucius Institute Day this Saturday.
The free event, put on by the non-profit organisation, showcases Chinese culture and language with performances and workshops.
Parnell District School is one of the schools involved. Mandarin teacher Stephanie Lin has prepared students for the event for six months.
Students will be performing a play as well as traditional Chinese drumming and some dance items. The school has also been involved in the Chinese Lantern Festival for many years.
Lin was born in Taiwan and came to New Zealand when she was 13.
She is one of two Mandarin teachers at Parnell District School and also takes her own class of year 3 and 4 students. Mandarin isn’t an optional subject but one that all year 4 to 8 students study.
This came about 12 years ago when former principal Gary Pearce decided it would be the most useful language for students to learn.
Lin agrees learning Mandarin is beneficial.
‘‘Studying another language helps you understand your own mother tongue and identity,’’ she says.
Real world application helps reinforce what the students learn. Lin often has children tell her they practise speaking Mandarin in Chinese restaurants or when they travel to China for holidays.
Principal Gary Cain agrees understanding the language is likely to come in handy.
‘‘Many families in the area have international contacts and a lot of our children will work in China or have contact with Chinese people in the future.’’
Go to aucklandcity harbournews.co.nz to watch a video on the Confucius Institute.