Sunday, September 23, 2012

Slowly Ascending

This is how I feel every morning when I take the 

elevator 21 floors down, down...

THE elevator continued its impossibly slow ascent. Or at least I imagined it was ascent. There was no telling for sure: it was so slow that all sense of direction simply vanished. It could have been going down for all I knew, or maybe it wasn’t moving at all. But let’s just assume it was going up. Merely a guess. Maybe I’d gone up twelve stories, then down three. Maybe I’d circled the globe. How would I know?

Murakami, Haruki (2010-11-17). Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World (p. 1). Random House, Inc.. Kindle Edition. 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Love Your Country With Rationality

Note: I assisted my students with their speech for tomorrow’s flag-raising ceremony. Listen to what China's future leaders have to say!

Today, our theme is: Love your country with rationality.

Tomorrow, we are going to welcome a significant day that we Chinese will never forget.

At midnight on September eighteenth, 1931, the Northeastern Army awoke to the blaring sound of bombs. The Japanese Empire bombed railroads near Liuhu in Shenyang province, and accused the Chinese Army.

With this excuse, the Japanese army bombed the barracks of the Nortnheastern Army, capturing the city of Shenyang. Half a year later, Northeastern China was occupied by Japan. That was a great shock to the whole world and a symbol of Japanese aggression, which was called the Incident of Nine Eighteen. The national humiliation was something we Chinese would never forget.

14 years! Bleeding 14 years!

The Northeast, the Central Plain and then the Songhu Area, were captured one by one. This great country was suffering and wailing. A bloody river spread through the mainland. We sacrificed 35 million lives to win the war!

This was a horrifying war. But we weren’t afraid of countless sacrifices; We Chinese got together for the first time to fight aggression. During the most desperate time, the power was building from the bottom of every Chinese citizen’s heart. The power was the desire for a peaceful life and for justice.

The mist of war has been cleaned off, but the alarming memories are still in our hearts.

Peace is not free. At the moment, it’s 81 years later, but still a painfully aching day.

I am sure all of you know about the event of the Diaoyu Island. It’s a question shaped by history. I should begin from the failure of the Qing Empire in the JiaWu naval battle. As a vanquished country, we gave some of our islands to Japan, including Diaoyu Island. After that, Japan was defeated during World War Two, and the United States asked Japan to give the island back to China. All of these countries reached an agreement that said Japan would help manage the Island. Today, how dare you Japan claim that Diaoyu Island as your national island?

How dare you regard China’s sovereignty as nothing!

Premier Wen said:

”The dignity that Chinese people and the government used to struggle for freedom is treasured during tough times; We are strong as steel.” Diaoyu Island belongs to China geographically and historically. So, we won’t take any steps back on the argument about the territory and sovereignty.

What we have to remember is the island is ours according to history. The destiny of a country depends on its people. We should defend our sovereignty positively.

However, impulse and anger won’t show the true heart of the country. Instead, having a responsible heart and a calm mind that can help you judge right or wrong are needed! Students and teachers, let’s change the love to our country into the power of study in order to make a stronger China! We will be pillars of the country both rational and logical.

Incident nine eighteen, we still remember and we will remember for all time. Keep the humiliation in our mind and love our country with rationality and calm.

Speakers: Jason Qian class 1 and Jason Ni class 2

Flag raiser: Mao Yuying class 1

Saturday, September 15, 2012



The students in my literature class are studying the short story “Disguise” by Jean Fong Kwok. In the story, the main character, Mrs. Chen, is an immigrant from China who lives in New York City. Mrs. Chen can’t speak English and gets lost in a dangerous neighborhood. I asked the students in one of my classes to write about a time they have felt confused or misunderstood when speaking a foreign language. Here are several responses from the students to this writing prompt. The kids are reflecting on their first two weeks of school. Their responses serve to remind me that as a teacher, I am also responsible for students' emotional and social well being. The writing is in the students’ own voices.

Kevin, Class 3, 4-B

I land up in a strange city. In there, I don’t feel completely at ease in the strange surroundings. Without any money or friends, everythings make me confused. Nobody knows what I say. Being a lonely man is too bad. I am anxious.


In fact, my English isn’t very good. So in class, I can’t understand some words. So sometimes I don’t know what teacher means. When he asks me questions, I’m nervous. I was worry if I can speak English well.


At this week, we had 4 science classes and I usually didn’t know what’ the meaning of it. Once he taught us a lot of things, and then he asked me to answer his questions, but I really didn’t know what the answer because I didn’t know what he taught me, so I couldn’t answer the question. He told me to pay more attention in class. He thought I can answer the question but I didn’t listen carefully. I felt shamed during that time.


I was sad when I disunderstand the English. When I in class, I feel bore because I can not understand it at all. And I didn’t want to ask others for help because it will disturb others and I didn’t want to ask teacher, too because I don’t know what I should say. I feel lonely and helpless.

About Me

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What do I do? That’s a question with more depth than the deceiving three-word construction would lead us to believe.

I live on planet earth with other folks, and I’m involved in the field of education and learning. I’m a life-long learner with a passion for knowledge and the process of bending bits of ideas into new constructions of beauty.