This is a monthly newsletter from Asia Society Center for Global Education dedicated to Chinese language and culture programs in schools.

March 2016

In this Issue
How Chinese Food Became
  Hip in America
CELIN Connection
Online Resources
TEQ Time
News and Opportunities
Happy Spring! This issue of Chinese Language Matters features a lot of exciting content related to the 2016 National Chinese Language Conference, which is less than a month away! Food ambassadors, the launch of CELIN Briefs, the benefits of multilingualism, all of which will be further explored at the #ChineseNCLC16 in Chicago. Enjoy the 'appetizers' for what's to come.

Chop Suey (James/Flickr)
Soup Dumplings. (Liren Chen/Flickr)

How Chinese Food Became Hip in America

Why was Chinese food the first Asian Cuisine to be embraced by Americans, and why is it still the most popular and prominent?

To find out, Asia Society interviewed Andrew Coe, a writer and independent scholar specializing in food history, about the evolution of Chinese food in the United States, the culinary impact of Nixon’s 1972 visit to China after the Chinese live broadcast President Nixon eating Peking Duck in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, and much more.

We are excited to have Andrew Coe join a panel on how food serves as a cultural ambassador at the 2016 National Chinese Language Conference in Chicago, the theme of which is "Ambassadorship in Action."

Join Andrew Coe and other food panelists at the 2016 National Chinese Language Conference in an engaging conversation and discussion on how food has become a connecting force among peoples and nations. Register Now!

CELIN Connection

4th grade Mandarin Immersion class (Portland Public Schools)As spring brings forth new growth, we are delighted to bring CELIN Briefs to you. The Briefs are our response to an urgent need in the field of Chinese early language and immersion education for research-based information, examples of best practices, and resources useful for teachers, educators, and parents. We invited renowned scholars and experts in the field to develop the Briefs, which address critical issues frequently encountered by Chinese language programs for students at all ages, with a particular emphasis on young learners.
Three CELIN Briefs are available in English and Chinese. This month we bring you the English versions on the CELIN Briefs Series page in Resources for Educators. The Chinese versions will be available in April.
  • Designing and Implementing Chinese Language Programs: Preparing Students for the Real World
  • Developing Initial Literacy in Chinese
  • Mapping Chinese Language Learning Outcomes in Grades K-12
Please spread the word and feel free to download and share them with your colleagues and parents in your programs. We will publish more Briefs in the future. We welcome your ideas about what topics would be helpful to you in your work.
Another invaluable resource that we bring to you this month is the profile of the Portland Public Schools Chinese Program, the first K-16 Flagship program in the United States, in collaboration with the University of Oregon. It offers an articulated K-12 Mandarin immersion program in which students in elementary school (starting in kindergarten) spend half of the school day learning in Mandarin Chinese and half learning in English. Students continue learning Mandarin in middle school and high school in classes that use innovative approaches. The district has also been successful in addressing equity and opportunity issues by bringing Mandarin study to Head Start Programs. Read their inspiring description of how they do it.
Many of you have probably heard from our staff requesting that you register your Chinese language program with us or update your information in the CELIN program directory. If you would prefer, you can send us an email at and give us your program name and contact information, and we will follow up with you.

We hope to see many of you at the 2016 National Chinese Language Conference (NCLC) in Chicago, April 28-30! Please come to our CELIN sessions and say hello.

CELIN is the Chinese Early Language and Immersion Network under China Learning Initiatives.

Online Resources

The Extraordinary Benefits of Multilingualism: In his article, The Extraordinary Benefits of Multilingualism, Chris Livaccari, former Director and Senior Advisor of China Learning Initiatives, explores the true meaning of becoming bilingual and multilingual, and how school communities can help students become globally competent adults who have the creativity, adaptability, and flexibility of mind to be successful in any environment.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can make sure you are helping students achieve these goals at your own school, please stop by the session called “Chinese Language Learning in Action for a Global World” at the National Chinese Language Conference where Chris Livaccari and Kate Farmer, Associate Director of School Partnerships for the Asia Society International Studies Schools Network (ISSN), a national initiative that has nurtured globally competent learners in K-12 schools for more than a decade, will offer some thoughts on how to ensure that your Chinese language students are developing the skills necessary to become globally competent.

Asia Society Professional Development and Resources for Chinese Language Teachers
Effective and targeted professional development for Chinese language teachers are crucial to ensure that teachers are able to engage with both their school and student communities successfully. Asia Society continues to play a leading role in the training of Chinese language teachers.

On January 28–30, Asia Society's China Learning Initiatives held the 6th Annual Chinese Language Teachers Institute in Charlotte, North Carolina. This year’s focus was Chinese language assessment and its implementation in the classroom. More than 70 participants from 20 states attended lectures and workshops and visited K–12 Chinese language programs in Union County Public Schools. Watch our video to learn more about this professional development opportunity.

TEQ Time

Instructional Videos for Chinese Language Teachers
Asia Society's year-long Chinese Language Teaching Fellows program selects promising candidates from schools nationwide, provides one-on-one coaching with experts, films real classroom teaching, and makes exemplary instructional videos available online. Part of Asia Society's professional development series for educators, these instructional videos for Chinese language teachers aim to share best practices in the field of Chinese language teaching. Learn more.

This month, we are featuring Zhangyi Shi at Collegiate School in Richmond, Virginia. In the video below, you can see her in action in her classroom. You can also access her accompanying lesson plan.

Zhangyi Shi teaches her high school class.

News and Opportunities from the Field 

In this March issue, you will find opportunities and resources for building partnerships abroad as well as ways to learn far beyond the classroom. 
Looking at a map in BerlinWebinar: How to Find K–12 Partners Abroad: What are some ways to develop international partners for your classroom? Please join us on April 14, 7 pm EDT, for a live discussion and webinar on developing partners that can lead to cross-cultural projects within your classroom and international travel beyond the classroom. Offered in partnership with IIE, we will provide tips for getting started as well as what to look for in a partnership in order to best fit your classroom and student needs. Register today.

Confucius Institute At Texas A&M University's Discovering China Program for High School Students: The Discovering China program is a 12-day initiative of the Confucius Institute (CI) at Texas A&M University to introduce high school students to Chinese history, society, language and culture. The program builds upon the legacy of developing a better understanding of China and creating personal relationships that bridge cultural differences and to help students better understand contemporary Chinese society, and to understand China’s role in the future. The program is offered in partnership with one of China’s top universities, Ocean University of China, in the beautiful coastal city of Qingdao. The program includes introductory Chinese language classes, visits to historic sites, seminars on Chinese culture and society, and opportunities to interact with Chinese students. The program dates are June 4–16. Learn more.

China Institute’s Summer Study in China for High School Students: China Institute’s summer program helps high school students improve their Chinese, and provides an opportunity to "live like a local" in China. This program consists of classroom language learning, activities and excursions, and a homestay experience. Students can choose from a four-week program in Beijing or a four-week program in East China where students will spend time in Beijing, Nanjing, Suzhou and Shanghai. Dates for the program are July 10 to August 7, 2016. An info session is available on Saturday, April 16. Learn more.

A New Publication from Institute of International Education (IIE) examines the What, Why and How of Strategic International Partnerships: Global Perspectives on Strategic International Partnerships: A Guide to Building Sustainable Academic Linkages takes an in-depth look into strategic institutional linkages from a host of vantage points, providing readers with critical case studies, practical advice, theoretical background, and good practices for developing successful partnerships. Authored by practitioners from around the world, this publication pushes the global dialogue surrounding institutional partnerships to focus on what makes a partnership strategic, how long-term partnerships are managed, and what underlying tenets should guide those seeking to initiate or improve their strategic partnerships. Learn more and pre-order the book.

China Learning Initiatives Team
Asia Society
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