By not solely teaching, learning, using, supporting & promoting simplified Chinese characters
not only the Romanized Hanyu Pinyin!
By teaching, learning, using, supporting and promoting traditional Chinese characters
& traditional phonetic Zhuyin/BoPoMo sounding symbols!
Make sure to assert your rights to be educated with the proper and formal Chinese language!
Make sure your money and our public money doesn't go to the support and promotion of the language policies and system that has almost made illiterate entire Chinese population and has almost wiped out 5,000 years of ancient Chinese heritages and civilization!
Language of the Future Sounds like Chinese
Hartford Courant September 8, 2007
Michael Kodas, July 12, 2007
PEI-PEI CHAMPION helps Aryn Hasjim, 3, of Avon, model the shape of a Chinese character while Eve Gorman 5, of Bristol, right, shows how its done. Champion recently held a Chinese language summer camp in Hartford. She is also teaching Chinese at her Champion Chinese Language Institute and many local schools during the school year.
Olivia is kneeling on the classroom floor, her lime-green socks adding a little flair to her red summer dress.
As the 5-year-old and her classmates sing the kids' classic, "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes," she points to the corresponding body parts of the stuffed seal she carries. The scene in Hartford could be any preschool in America. Except the lyrics - "Tóer jienbang xi jiaozhi" - are in Chinese.
At the Champion Chinese Language Institute's summer camp, Eve is among a growing group of children and adults studying Chinese language and culture. In the state's public schools, students studying Chinese language have soared tenfold in three years, reflecting a national trend. In the past two years, U.S.-China trade has soared nearly 50 percent, and Chinaleapfrogged over Mexico to become our second-biggest trade partner behind Canada. China's growing global economic and political influence is fueling increases in teacher and student exchanges in Connecticut schools and driving a statewide push to educate children on all things Chinese.
Beyond that, some educators say, there is a romanticism about China.
"Built into almost all of Western thinking is just this real fascination with the whole civilization of China," said Dan Gregg, social studies consultant for the state Department of Education.
The number of public school students enrolled in Chinese language courses statewide has soared from 300 to nearly 3,000 inthe past three academic years, according to Mary Ann Hansen, world language consultant with the state Department of Education. Nationally, the number has risen from 5,000 seven years ago to between 30,000 and 50,000 , according to the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages.
The College Board in May administered its first advanced placement test in Chinese.
And educational ties between the two nations are growing stronger.
Connecticut-certified Chinese teachers are hard to find, but volunteer teachers are coming from China (paid by Chinagovernment) and getting temporary state certification, Hansen said. They have been coming for the past two years through a nonprofit organization affiliated with the Chinese Ministry of Education.
Connecticut's 3,000 public school students studying Chinese remain just a fraction of the 70,000 who study Spanish, far and away the No. 1 language studied. Yet Chinese has quickly moved up to fifth place behind Spanish, French, Latin and Italian, jumping ahead of Japanese, German, Russian and Portuguese.
Business and world events are driving the change, Hansen says.
"I think Sept. 11 put languages in the fore," she said. "President Bush in 2006 gathered university presidents and said we need to get going with [Kindergarten through college] language programs ... [that are] critical to our national security and economic interest. And Chinese is one of those languages."
Cultural exchanges have also been on the rise.
In the spring of 2004, Gregg began a teacher exchange with Shandong, Connecticut's sister province in China. TwentyConnecticut teachers went to China for 10 days in the first exchange. Gregg has taken four groups so far and is applying for funds to take a fifth. In July, Glastonbury High School teamed with Choate Rosemary Hall, the elite private boarding school in Wallingford, to host Chinese programs for 40 teachers and more than 60 students from across the country. In the government-financed program, students immersed themselves in Chinese while teachers took classes on foreign-language teaching methods.
The growing emphasis on China extends to higher education.
Last fall, Yale University received a $50 million donation - one of the biggest in the school's history - to further its collaborations with China. The number of undergraduates in the university's Chinese classes hovered around 400 from the mid-1990s to the 2003-2004 school year. Last year it leaped to 700.
It is a trend mirrored on campuses across the country, educators say.
In May, 3,260 students nationwide took the College Board's first Chinese Language and Culture advanced-placement exam - including 33 in Connecticut. Colleges sometimes offer credit to students who score high on AP exams. The Chinese exams were administered at 428 schools.
Parents of children in the Choate-Glastonbury program told Marty Abbott, director of education for the foreign-language teaching council, that learning Chinese was an opportunity to get a competitive edge.
Though many say the drive to learn Chinese is fueled in large part by a perceived future economic payoff, some say that's dubious. "The international language of business is English," said John Treat, chairman of Yale's Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures.
Chinese has become the third most popular foreign language, behind Spanish and French, according to Yale's website. But in international business, it won't supplant English anytime soon, Treat said .
"Not in my lifetime. Or not in the lifetime of an 18-year-old who's deciding to undertake what will be a lifelong study of Chinese," he said. Connecticut businesses aren't as concerned with China as people may think, said Laura Jaworski, a trade specialist with the state Department of Economic and Community Development.
China was seventh among buyers of Connecticut exports from January to May this year. It was 11th in calendar year 2006 and eighth in 2005. Canada has been No. 1 every year for the past decade.
While some students study Chinese to get ahead in business, many do it for what Treat calls the "right reasons" - intellectual curiosity, an interest in linguistics or an interest in Chinese poetry or fiction.
In any case, Chinese enrollment at Yale is at the crest of a bubble, he said, citing a slight decline in first-year enrollment last year. China's importance is overstated because of magazines such as Time, Newsweek and The Economist and because of an American fascination with the country, Treat said. "There's something romantic about the image of China in the American imagination, and that's definitely at play here," he says.
Romanticism of a different sort spurred creation of the Champion Institute at 111 Gillett St. in Hartford. Its founder, Pei-Pei Champion, has created the institute to share the long, rich history of traditional Chinese, taught in her native Taiwan. In the mid-1960s, China's government created "simplified Chinese and Romanized or Pinyin Chinese" in a bid to make the language easier to write.
Simplified characters, which are taught more widely in the United States, have fewer strokes, on the surface, making them faster to write but also removing some visual clues to their meaning. That makes them more difficult to learn, Champion said.
She started the institute in September after years of volunteering at local schools. She uses a teaching program she developed.
"You can save the world by learning this language properly," she said.
Champion will start offering programs for schools and corporations this fall. She also offers individual and group lessons for children and adults.
Hansen, the education department consultant, has little doubt there will be a demand.
"The Chinese are coming," she says.
Copyright © 2007, The Hartford Courant
"The Chinese are coming," Hansen said.
However, are we ready? We (Connecticut schools) are using the system created by China’s Communist government duringChina’s “Language Reform” & “Culture Revolution”!
We are using the language system which has almost made illiterate China’s entire population and wiped out five thousand years ancient Chinese civilizeation!
Our future presidents, governors, historians, scientists, and future generations won’t be able to read and understand any Chinese materials written and printed as few as fifty years ago.
They will only be able to read whatever Chinese government wants them to read and understand!!!
"The Chinese are coming,"
But, are we READY?
For more information about Champion Chinese Language Program or Champion Chinese Language Institute, please visit ChampionChinese.com or E-mail Pei-Pei Champion at PeipeiChampion@yhaoo.com
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