Friday, December 27, 2019

Two Kiwi Volunteers' Language and Cultural Sharing

My students and I had fun learning about Maori culture with hands-on activities, including the haka war dance, hongi greeting, how to put on a scary face, and so on. 

Thanks to Jack and Brad, two volunteers from Down Under, Class 707 and the seventh-grade gifted students put on their mean faces and performed the traditional war dance. Two of my colleagues sat in on this unique class and showed great interest in speaking English and learning about New Zealand. Moreover, I picked up some great ideas to promote Taiwanese aboriginal cultures for next April's educational visit to our Korean sister school as well.      

Other than the interactive tasks, we also learned some fun facts through a vivid presentation. For example, Taiwanese aboriginals, according to research, are genetically connected with the indigenous people of New Zealand, Maori. Following that, the handshake stemmed from a nice gesture to show no intention to harm. Then, we learned some Maori vocab words and phrases, too. 

Either during recess or in the middle of the class, curious students passing by tried to figure out what this foreigner was doing here. Brad was surrounded by a group of students like a superstar. Even though they were too shy to say anything, some of them still plucked up the courage to ask for a selfie. I can't help wondering if and when my school would apply for our own AIESEC volunteer program so that I wouldn't have to BORROW them from others anymore.  

Later that day, Principal Liao of CSJH called a meeting in a vegan restaurant. She invited those who are in charge of international education from multiple junior high schools to discuss future collaborations. Brad and Jack will recruit local college students in New Zealand to have Skype sessions with Taiwanese students for a school year. After that, they'll come to Taiwan and volunteer at those schools to help with English learning and international cultural exchange.

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