Why learn about China? What does the word ‘China’ mean to you? Does it instantly conjure up images of rice, chop sticks and lanterns, or do you think of more complex high-brow matters such as communism, trade and population growth?
The China Education project’s aims are to:
- compare and contrast the diverse lifestyles of children in Scotland with the diversity experienced by children in China;
- investigate how events in the past have shaped children’s lives in today’s China;
- raise awareness of humanitarian and conservation issues in China;
- prepare children for and involve them in Enterprising Global Citizenship.
China supports the largest population in the world, yet to the majority of people living outside it, relatively little is known or understood about the place or the people. Although an ancient civilisation, responsible for countless achievements throughout history, the rate of growth and development experienced at the moment is unprecedented and has taken the world by surprise.
In terms of trade, industry and tourism, China has become a major player in the world market. In 2008, all eyes were on China for the Olympics held in Beijing. This has been a huge step forward in terms of accessibility to a country which has often avoided world attention.
Accessibility is set to grow and flourish, therefore children in primary school today; the traders, tourists and business people of tomorrow, must be equipped with the skills, knowledge and understanding, which will allow entry into China with ease.
The importance of Chinese language has already been recognised as a necessary addition to the curriculum. Courses are now in the process of being prepared for secondary schools.
This project will be a firm foundation to build the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding, by providing a context to explore the fascinating history, geography, culture, society and belief systems which shape life today in China.