AYJ has participated in biennial cultural exchanges with schools from Suzhou, China (near Shanghai) since 2007. This unique educational experience has provided lasting memories for many AYJ students. The trip to China takes place in the spring while the Chinese students visit Kanata in the fall. The next exchange for Spring 2014 is already being planned. See Ms. Peters or Mr. Thickett for details.
A.Y. Jackson Secondary School Students Dine on Duck Tongues, Celebrate Culture Shock, and Trek Thousands of Steps
April 26, 2010 Ottawa, ON – A.Y. Jackson Secondary School students spent two weeks embracing the culture, the climate, and the cuisine of China. Teacher Sandy Wynne said “a small group of A.Y. Jackson Secondary School students and teachers experienced elements of China’s past and present through exposure to Chinese history, culture, and food.”
Ms. Wynne says almost every new venue resulted in teachable moments that resonated with the students; when they climbed thousands of steps on The Great Wall – they thought about the road to freedom; when they stood in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square the students were overcome by the courage it took to stand up for your beliefs; and when they entered the silk and pearl markets – they were captivated by commerce on the corner.
Teacher Wynne said the “Chinese hospitality allowed students to experience first-hand the Chinese way of life, they practised the smattering of Mandarin they had learned, and mastered (almost) the skill of handling chopsticks.” She added that food was always a show of one-upmanship as the students compared what they had eaten the night before in their billeted homes including turtle, duck tongues, chicken feet, intestines, pig ears, snails, fish skins, and fish head soup! The Chinese families exposed the Kanata students to the many differences in their lives and surprised them with the many similarities.
The students toured four highly respected schools in the Suzhou area: Soochow University High School, Suzhou School #10, and SIP Schools #2 and #3. In contrast to the formal receptions by the schools’ administrators, the informal student interactions were simply fun as songs, stories, magic tricks, games, tokens of friendship, and ultimately email addresses were swapped.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 March 2013 15:24