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Utah's 2017 Chinese Immersion Camp Comes to a Close

On August 4th, the University of Utah’s Confucius Institute and Youth Education Center concluded their 2017 Chinese Immersion summer camp. The camp was held at five campuses in the Salt Lake area, including the University of Utah, University of Utah Sandy Campus, Cascade Elementary, Foothill Elementary, and North Davis Junior High. At these locations, 232 students ranging from 2nd grade to 9th grade attended camp activities.

The camp’s subjects differed according to grade level, but all classes adopted an immersion method of teaching. That means that all subjects, from language to culture to crafting and classroom activities, were taught in Chinese. This allows the students to learn through playing, as well as providing them with a good example of native Chinese-speaking environments. As for curriculum, the subjects are tailored to each grade’s characteristics and abilities; the 2nd grade curriculum revolves around animals and colors, while the 3rd grade focuses on family and friends, 4th grade on vacation plans, 5th and 6th grades on travelling, and 7th through 9th grades on environmental protection.

 

 

students sit on the ground while a teacher writes on the board2nd grade language class at the North Davis Junior High site

 

students practice writing characters on a whiteboard while their teacher looks on3rd graders at the North Davis Junior High site practice writing characters

 

students sit in their desks while a teacher presents a powerpoint 5th and 6th graders practice speaking at the North Davis Junior High site

 

a student stands with his arm raised infront of a stage while his class looks on 5th and 6th grade language class at the Foothill Elementary site

 

 

students sit in their desks while a teacher gives a powerpoint 7th through 9th graders in language class at the Cascade Elementary site

 

Because the students have a full week of camp activities, they can be exposed not only to the Chinese language, but to Chinese culture as well. Some cultural activities included making shadow puppets, kites, blown-ink paintings, dragon paintings, and traditional opera masks. Additionally, students got to try a bamboo dance, Chinese jump rope, and the popular “Little Apple” dance. At the end of the week, the students used Chinese put on a final performance for family members, earning enthusiastic applause.

 

two students work on their ink-blown paintings of trees 2nd graders at the Foothill Elementary site try blown-ink paintings

 

a teacher kneels to blow ink across paper while her students circle around to watch 2nd graders at the Cascade Elementary site watch their teacher demonstrate blown-ink painting

 

student's ink blown paintings are displayed infront of a white board decorated with a tree and Chinese characters Blown-ink paintings on display at the Cascade Elementary site

 

students wear masks colored to look like Beijing opera makeup 4th graders at the North Davis Junior High site color traditional opera masks

 

colorful shadow puppets in the shape of dragons, emperors, and warriors Shadow puppets made by 3rd graders at the Cascade Elementary site

 

students sit around a desk and  play with their shadow puppets 3rd graders at the Cascade Elementary site practice with their shadow puppets

 

a shadow of an emperor and a shadow of a dragon appear on a curtain A shadow puppet show at the Cascade Elementary site

 

students use a blow dryer to practice paper making 7th through 9th graders experience paper making at the Cascade Elementary site

 

students sit outside while a teacher demonstrates how to make a solar oven out of a pizza box 3rd graders at the Cascade Elementary site learn about solar power

 

colorful student-made posters written in Chinese characters 7th through 9th graders present on environmental protection at the Cascade Elementary site

 

students sit in their desks while a teacher explains how to make ice cream in a plastic bag Students make ice cream at the North Davis Junior High site

 

a teacher helps students design cardboard suitcases 5th through 6th graders make luggage at the North Davis Junior High site

 

line up to act out an aiport security checkpoint

Students at the North Davis Junior High site act out an airport security check

 a parent and student hold hands and jump over blue poles on the ground held by students

2nd graders at Cascade Elementary site try the bamboo dance with their parents

 

The yearly Chinese dual language immersion summer camp is an important reflection of Confucius Institute at the University of Utah’s strong support for local Chinese immersion programs. In one week of Chinese immersion study, students not only get to review Chinese and learn new material, but also experience Chinese culture. The camp activities have earned parent’s positive reviews and enthusiastic support.

 

You can find the original Chinese version of this article here.

 

Last Updated: 11/2/17