Updated 11 months 1 week ago
 
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Scroll up or click here to watch the Service Learning video we created. 

 

 

Our service learning partner is Mrs. Yang Xiu Lian. She is almost 70 years old and was born and raised in XiZhou. She is part of the Hui ethnic group and lives alone since she has no children or husband.

 

Because of this experience, we learned an abundance of information about our elder. She was willing to answer any questions we had of her and expressed her views on life. She told us stories from the Great Leap Forward, where she and her dad had to survive on less than 48Kg of grain for a whole year. She also told about her time as a propaganda singer and dancer during the cultural revolution. Most importantly, she shared her outlook on life. Although she was faced with many hardships, she remains happy and carefree. 

 

Our conversations with Mrs.Yang taught us about XiZhou’s past as well. Although the town is small, it holds a large history. The cultural revolution was a very big event for XiZhou, and the effects of this event are still being seen today. The Great Leap forward was also a prominent event in XiZhous history as many people starved and the community suffered great losses. 

 

Talking to Mrs. Yang taught us a significant amount of information about 20th century Chinese History. She taught us not only about the major events like the Cultural Revolution and Great Leap forward, but also smaller and lesser known events in chines history. Some of these events had a very negative impact on her, but she remains happy and joyful.

Our service learning partner is Mrs. Yang Xiu Lian. She is almost 70 years old and was born and raised in XiZhou. She is part of the Hui ethnic group and lives alone since she has no children or husband.

 

Because of this experience, we learned an abundance of information about our elder. She was willing to answer any questions we had of her and expressed her views on life. She told us stories from the Great Leap Forward, where she and her dad had to survive on less than 48Kg of grain for a whole year. She also told about her time as a propaganda singer and dancer during the cultural revolution. Most importantly, she shared her outlook on life. Although she was faced with many hardships, she remains happy and carefree. 

 

Our conversations with Mrs.Yang taught us about XiZhou’s past as well. Although the town is small, it holds a large history. The cultural revolution was a very big event for XiZhou, and the effects of this event are still being seen today. The Great Leap forward was also a prominent event in XiZhous history as many people starved and the community suffered great losses. 

 

Talking to Mrs. Yang taught us a significant amount of information about 20th century Chinese History. She taught us not only about the major events like the Cultural Revolution and Great Leap forward, but also smaller and lesser known events in chines history. Some of these events had a very negative impact on her, but she remains happy and joyful.

 

On the last Wednesday of the trip, we all shared our Service Learning videos with our Service Learning partners and other members of the community. This was a very great experience for all of us because it gave us a chance to show our gratitude to the village for welcoming us and being so kind. After lunch, we walked to our Service Learning partners home to pick them up and any other people they wanted to come. Sadly, our Service Learning partner was not in Xizhou today, so she was unable to come. However we still got to share our video with the other members of the community which was a really great experience. Although our Service Learning partner was not at the sharing event, I am still very glad that we met her. She welcomed us into her home and started talking to us about her life story immediately. Her personality was amazing and she reminded us about the importance of happiness

 

During the sharing ceremony, we all sat in classroom 1 and projected our videos on to the wall. When we were presenting our own Service Learning video, we hat to sit on a bench facing the audience and not the screen. This was because we should be focused in the way the audience views our video instead of the video we have already seen a bunch of times. When our video started and the picture of our Service Learning partner showed up, the members of the community immediately knew who he was and started saying her name and other things I could not understand. This showed how wholesome the community is, because everyone knows everyone. Their expressions showed a new insight on to Mrs. Yang's life and I could tell they were very interested about what we had to share.

 

I have several recommendations for future service learning groups. First, find your persons story. As earnest hemming way once said, “every mans life told truly is a novel in its own.” Every person in the village has something that makes them special, our job is to bring that out in them. Second, ask followup questions. Our service learning partner was a propaganda singer and dancer in the cultural revolution. After we shared this with Mr.T ( which was when our time was up for recording) he explained to us how much better and more influential our video could have been with a clip of her dancing or singing. Third, do not be scared. Do not be scared to go up to people and start talking to them. Do not be scared to ask questions that you do not know if they will answer. The worst you elder could say is that they don't feel comfortable about that, the best that could happen would result in an amazing video.

Comments

Hi everyone, my name is Claire. I am part of the Revival Microcampus group. I am originally from the United States, most recently Dallas,Texas, however this is my forth year living in China. My passions include soccer, volleyball, traveling and photography. Microcampus has been the experience of a lifetime. XiZhou is absolutely beautiful and the people are incredibly kind and welcoming. I loved all 28 days I spent in the village and wish there were so many more. Through my time in XiZhou, I learned so much about Chinese culture, my Inquiry Project topic, and myself. Microcampus was remarkable opportunity and I will cherish it forever.