Our Service learning partner is Ms. Yang. She is 65 years old and she owns an embroidery stand at Si Fang Jie.
Ms. Yang, our service learning partner, is 65 years old. She has lived her whole life in XiZhou. She has a husband she lives with, and one son that lives outside of XiZhou.
Through the Service Learning project, I learned that Ms. Yang lived through the peak of the Cultural Revolution. Because of this, she is very thankful to her living conditions now, but thinks young people today are too careless.
As she talked about her life when she was our age, she mentioned that almost all houses around XiZhou those days were fragile and ruined. If it rained, she said, that several houses would break down. But she also said that now all the houses are new and rebuilt, and life is good.
When we asked her what games she played when she was a kid, she told us that she did not have any time. After she school was finished, she always went to work. At school, she only learned about Chairman Mao's sayings and thoughts all day. She also mentioned that she was the part of the youth group, and they would hold up Chairman Mao's portraits in fields.
When we shared our service lerning project, unfrotunately, Ms. Yang, our partner, was not here. Joanne and Shannon went out beforehand to pick her up, but according to them, she said she will come at her own time. When other groups were presenting their videos, Shannon stood out to check for her, but it was no use.
But this does not mean at all that our efforts were wasted. When Ms.Yang's face came up on the screen the first time, Yang nai nai and Mr. Yang, the other groups' partners, (Yes, they were all Yang) made a remark that they knew her. It was interesting to watch them look at their friend's video. The way they laughed with her laughs was pleasant and happy to see. After we were done, we recieved a loud applause and some candy that Mr. Yang brought.
For future microcampus student that are going to be doing this project, I have four recommendations. First is to be enthusiastic and willing when asking questions to the partner. If the group members look passive about the question, he or she would not want to open their hearts and share their deepest memories with the group. Second is to find as many people as possible that could be the group's service learning partner, because they might leave the town or get sick all of a sudden. Third is to check first if they have been a service learning partner before, because if they have been one, the group can not have him or her as the partner. It would not be fun to find that he or she has been a service learning partner when the group is 80% done with the project. The fourth is to record conversation with the partner in a quiet place, because traffic and cars beeping tend to eliminate the partner's voices.