The De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) Confucius Institute (CI) hosted two summer schools to provide both local schoolchildren and existing DMU students with an experience of Chinese language and culture.
The CI is a vibrant celebration of all things China. It offers our students and the wider community a taste of Chinese life from the DMU campus.
The first of the schools was held in collaboration with #DMUglobal, the university’s pioneering programme which offers students the opportunity for a valuable international experience as part of their studies, was put on to give DMU students the chance to learn a new language and sample a vibrant culture.
PhD in Social Sciences student Sonny Bremner said the CI had provided a ‘marvellous week and a true indulgence of Chinese culture’ and that she was ‘looking forward to putting my knowledge and skills into practice’.
The five-day programme included two hours of Mandarin classes which the students took to brilliantly, developing their basic understanding of the language by the end of the week.
Days also included a variety of sessions in which participating students could have a go at different traditional Chinese art forms. These included Tai Chi, calligraphy, Chinese knot making, dance, a tea ceremony, and there was even an appearance by the CI’s Chinese dragon.
As well as collectively experiencing Chinese, the students shared cultural elements from their own international backgrounds which included Brazil, India, Lithuania, and a number of African countries.
They were disappointed when the Chinese Summer School drew to a close.
Ishan Murali, another student at the School studying the Master of Business Administration (Global) course, said: "I found the summer school to be very stimulating and an enjoyable experience.
“The tutors at the CI were very supportive and encouraging. It was a great chance to experience Mandarin and Chinese culture as well as other cultures from several international students.
“Overall it was an unforgettable experience for me."
The second of the two schools at DMU’s CI was the CI Kids Club.
12 local children aged six or older attended the five day event where they spent time developing their existing knowledge of Mandarin and Chinese culture that they already had from lessons they’d received in their schools, which had also been put on by the CI.
The children also got the opportunity to experience different cultural activities including brush painting and calligraphy, Kung Fu, knot making, paper folding, and they also got the chance to enjoy a traditional Chinese party.
Eight-year-old Ahmed Sarodia said: "I loved learning Chinese, it helped me build upon what I had learned at school.”
Mum Claire of Eva Maltby, eight, and her younger sister Mae, six, said: “The club was a fantastic opportunity for the children to validate what they have been learning at school in an inspiring environment with caring and enthusiastic teachers.
“Eva and Mae came home buzzing after each session and have been sharing what they learnt with friends and family.”
Posted on Friday 7th August 2015