Bidding Farewell to First Chinese Volunteer Teachers
13 June, 2013
Bidding Farewell to First  Chinese Volunteer Teachers
Last Friday, Chinese Embassy organized the summing-up meeting with the volunteer Chinese teachers who already left Georgia. The new flow will arrive in autumn and it will increase from 10 to 15 teachers. The meeting was attended by Georgian officials from the Ministry of Education, as well as by the directors of public schools, teachers of Confucius Institute, volunteer teachers and journalists.
Deng Hao, Political Counselor to the Ambassador, opened the meeting:”Our aim is to sum up the work of
Chinese volunteer teachers and ensure that in future their work gets more successful.”
Yang Beibei, one of the volunteer teachers, shared her teaching experience: “I think that the teaching has proved to be successful. Almost everybody at the school yard greets me in Chinese. I have very good relations with my pupils who make up around 30 persons – aged from 6 to 18 and all of them are diligent and interested in Chinese culture and language. Some of them even prepare questions before the lesson starts and I see this interest in their inquisitive eyes. I think other volunteer teachers will agree with me that Georgian children have a knack of learning foreign languages and a gift of expressing themselves. We try our best to create a cozy teaching environment for them to assist them learn one more foreign language to be more successful in their life. Though, we have selective courses, which cause certain difficulties to us, teachers, but on the other hand, the pupils have a motivation and interest. Almost all of our lessons are cognitive and creative – about our calligraphy, painting, cutting out papers etc, which enables them to directly get acquainted with our cultural aspects.”
Nino Kvitaishvili, director of Public School # 123, said: “When I was asked: why Chinese? My answer sounded more like the opinion of a historian than that of a director. The role of China in the political as well as cultural sphere is immense and growing. It was a real challenge to have a motivation to accept this proposal and give our pupils a chance to learn Chinese in our modern world of globalization. Our volunteer teacher really proved to be faithful to her work as she was very hard-working and a real professional, bearing features that are so characteristic for the Chinese nation, and has justified the essence of the program itself. “
Lia Gigauri, Head of the Department of Secondary Education Management and Development of Georgian Ministry of Education said:”We also had a volunteer teacher at one of the higher education institutions and there too the program was successful. The interest is bound to needs. Pupils must be aware of what they will use Chinese language for in order to have more interest. I thank all people involved in the program. It was mentioned that some Chinese teachers have learned some Georgian and it should be so, as the program’s name is ‘learn and teach’,” she added with a smile: “This was a pilot program and we will consider all those drawbacks and strong points for the next time.”
Chen Jianfu, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to Georgia thanked everybody and Georgian Ministry of Education in particular. “After listening to you, I have an impression that the program has been a success. Already 350 children have been registered for the second stage of our teaching program, which makes me happy. First and foremost, I hope that this cooperation will become a ground for closer cultural links between Georgian and Chinese peoples. Time changes. Some thirty years ago, in China foreign languages were taught only at institutes. But from 1980s we began to teach languages at schools. Now it begins from early childhood. Parents in China are very strict with children as they know that they will not be successful without learning languages. I think that Georgians should take this example from Chinese parents. We also have Confucius Institute in Tbilisi that is the result of bilateral cooperation in the field of education. I hope that Georgians will learn Chinese together with English and they will be employed at Chinese companies.”
We had a saying - “this is Chinese for me”, implying that it was something unattainable and overcomplicated. But life is full of surprises and one never knows what will happen. Maybe, after years, if the program is a real success, we’ll have quite a number of Georgian nationals who will speak Chinese fluently and, moreover, Georgian tutors will be teaching Chinese.
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