早坂有生のYALE

2016年にYale(イェール、エール)大学に学部生として入学した日本人、早坂有生のブログです。大学での出来事やアメリカ大学出願のことなどについて書いていきます。

中国農村での五日間Part1

北京での2ヶ月の語学学習プログラム終了後、新幹線で5時間くらいの農村地帯にある高校で開かれたサマースクールに、教える側として参加してきました。Building Bridgesというこのサマースクールは、今年で10年目で、毎年Yaleと中国の大学の団体が合同で中国の農村地帯に行って教えています。僕は一年生の春学期からYale内のBuilding Bridgesという学生団体の一幹部として所属していて、このサマースクールの準備を手伝っていました。また、ちょうどHBAの直後にあるということもあり、今回参加しました。個人的には、貧しく教育格差の影響を受けている生徒をYale生として助けたい!ではなく、北京という大都市に2ヶ月いて色々学ぶことができたので、中国の農村の現状についても学びたい!という目的でした。中国の都市部の発展は凄まじいが、農村部はまだまだで生活環境はかなり悪い、よくそう聞きます。実際はどうなのでしょうか。
↓高校から見える景色。想像していたような、どこまでも畑が広がるような場所ではありませんでした。
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HBA Week9 Epilogue

After HBA has finished, I participated in a summer camp called Building Bridges at a rural area of China. That one week was the great opportunity for me to realize how much my Chinese has improved during the HBA and how suited the HBA was for me to learn how to make friends in China.

Building Bridges is a 10-year-old program in which students of Yale and famous Chinese universities go to a school in rural areas of China and teach students there. Since all of the university and high school students except me were Chinese or Chinese American, I needed to use Chinese to communicate and teach most of the time.

I was surprised to find myself talking almost anything from daily conversation to anthropological discussion in Chinese without almost any problem. Using Chinese everyday every time for the past two months and taking classes on discussion of social problems in China at the HBA made me possible to discuss anything in Chinese. I not only had enough language skill to communicate in Chinese, but also enough knowledge about China to make friends. I think this improvement shows the great features of the HBA.

↓The school I went to participate in Building Bridges.
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HBA Week8 Who is suited to join HBA

9 weeks of only studying Chinese in Beijing is pretty long. Some of my friends are already missing home and lives in their home countries. I think there are certain conditions for students to enjoy the environment here and make the most of HBA.

If you are only interested in studying Chinese language, or getting extra language credits, HBA is not the right choice. Getting a good grade at HBA is not difficult; you do not have to study much. This situation means that you have a lot of free time. If you do not have much interest in learning about Chinese culture and visiting various tourist sites, you'd be bored. You could go to bars everynight if you want, but what's the point of going to places where only foreigners go and drinking like American college students in Beijing?

If you haven't been in an environment in which you always have to use your second/third language, HBA could be a hard experience. I think most of the students often use English when teachers are not around now. Still, many are tired of using Chinese. I had a similar experience when I was at Yale with English, but there was almost no way I could use Japanese in my daily life. Thus, I have no problem with only using Chinese here (I often use Japanese to talk with other Japanese students though).

↓三里屯: Most of the students go to bars there. You can enjoy shopping in a daytime.
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中国のカラオケ(KTV)

中国でカラオケはKTV(Karaoke TV)と呼ばれ大人気で、いたるところにあります。僕の泊まっているホテルにもあり、また近くの駅の周辺にも複数あり、さらにスーパーやデパートにはミニのものもあります(プリクラ機サイズで、中に二人分の椅子とカラオケ機があり歌える。カーテンがついていて閉められるが多くの人は閉めずに、人の目を気にせず歌っている)。性産業が法律によりかなり制限されている中国では、カラオケ店という名の下に性的サービスを行う、KTVという業種もあるらしいのですが、そちらは行ったことないので、ここでは所謂カラオケとしてのKTVについて書きたいと思います。
↓少し前に流行った中国で最も有名な歌の一つ『小苹果(小さなリンゴ)』。♪你是我的小呀小苹果~
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HBA Week7 What you need to do before HBA

You can learn a lot about China at HBA, but I think there are things you can preview before participating in the program. I did not do much preparation before HBA, and am regretting about that now. So I would like to write what I think should be done before attending HBA.

You should study about Chinese history. Beijing has a lot of historical places and historically important goods. If you know Chinese history, you can understand the meaning of these things and the importance of them. However, if you do not know about history, you do not really understand why they are important. For instance, when I went to a museum about China-Japan War, many exhibits emotionally hit me since I knew about the history of that war. However, when I went to National Museum and saw exhibits about ancient China, I could not understand the importance of them.

Knowledge of Chinese songs makes your life in China happier. I started to listen to Chinese songs several weeks after HBA began, but if I had started before HBA, I would have been able to talk about these songs with teachers from the beginning, or to sing these songs at karaoke.

↓National Museum
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HBA Week6 Homestay(中国家庭) program

HBA has a homestay program. Students do not actually homestay at Chinese families, but each two students are matched with one local family if they want. Since both students and Chinese families are busy on weekdays, they usually meet on Sunday. What they do together and how often they meet are completely up to the local family and could vary a lot. In my case, my Chinese parents have a seven-year-son and we meet almost every Sunday except the week of social study. We went to some historical places, to see Chinese son's activities, and to eat Beijing local foods.

The best part of this program is that I learned a lot about local life. We went to places a guide book doesn't have, restaurants only locals know about, and talked a lot about a life in China and at Beijing. Since a lot of our host families have young children, it is especially interesting to learn about their views on education, health, economics, and other topics related to child raising and also related to what I learned in Chinese class. If you are interested not only in learning Chinese language but also in learning about China, this homestay program is one of the best opportunities to achieve your goal.

↓We went to watch a traditional play together
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盧溝橋ー愛国教育の中心地ー

日中戦争は、北京郊外にある盧溝橋付近での、演習中の日本軍と中国軍間の戦闘により勃発しました。盧溝橋はもともと北京の最遠部で、他地方に向かう旅人が別れを惜しむ場所であったとともに、観月の名所としても知られていました。現在は、盧溝橋が現存するとともに、付近に愛国教育の中心地とされる抗日戦争記念館があります。先日そこに行ってきました。

↓盧溝橋。獅子の石像がたくさん並んでいて可愛いです。日の加減によって綺麗になります。盧溝橋事件は盧溝橋の上で起きたわけではありません。
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↓抗日戦争記念館。小学生、高校生、家族連れなど、多くの人で賑わっていました。
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