Kicking U.S. butt even when we’re trying to study their language


Who gets the most out of this exchange?

“This country doesn’t value teachers, and that upsets me,” she said. “Teachers don’t earn much, and this country worships making money. In China, teachers don’t earn a lot either, but it’s a very honorable career.”

Ms. Zheng said she spent time clearing up misconceptions about China.

“I want students to know that Chinese people are not crazy,” she said. For instance, one of her students, referring to China’s one-child-per-family population planning policy, asked whether the authorities would kill one of the babies if a Chinese couple were to have twins.

Some students were astonished to learn that Chinese people used cellphones, she said. Others thought Hong Kong was the capital.

Barry Beauchamp, the Lawton superintendent, said he was thrilled to have Ms. Zheng and two other Chinese instructors working in the district. But he said he believed that the guest teachers were learning the most from the cultural exchange.

“Guest Teaching Chinese and Learning America,”  Sam Dillon, New York Times, May 9, 2010, page A14.

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2 Responses to Kicking U.S. butt even when we’re trying to study their language

  1. Josh says:

    Thanks for this post – and even more for telling the truth!

    I teach many ELL students from around the world every day and am amazed at how much more motivated they are. They are eager to learn and work their asses off compared to the American students.

    Soon I will be moving to Taiwan to teach and expect a different environment completely. I will probably have some of the same problems, but it will be refreshing to see how it will change.

    Like

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