My group for service learning includes Sarah, Daniel, Apoorva, and Me. All of our information will be kept with Daniel.
Our Service Learning partner was Mrs. Duan, the wife of the former security guard who works at Yang Zhou Ran. She is 71 years old and her full name is段富花. She was born in Wei Guo (魏国) and has lived in Xizhou for 60-70 years. In addition, she has been working as a farmer for her entire life. I learnt that she has one daughter and one son, though her daughter passed away at the age of 43 due to cancer.
Unlike other people, she likes Mao Ze Dong. She thinks that Mao Ze Dong bought happiness and wealth to China. When Mao took the lead, he made the lives of the farmers better and more sustainable. Mrs. Duan never got education and was born to be a farmer. One of her biggest dreams was to receive education and learn about this world There are many regrets in her life, but she believes that all she needs currently is happiness.
I learned that many people in Xizhou couldn’t get an education and follow their dreams because of the chaotic mess. Now a day, teenagers like us should feel very lucky to have an education and to live in such a non-violence world.
Mrs. Duan didn't mention much about the history of Xizhou and China but she knows that life has gotten so much better in the recent years. During the Cultural Revolution, all educated, professional and rich people had been targets. Those that weren’t killed were dispersed across the countryside, laboring on farms or working in labor camps. After the Cultural Revolution, life got so much better and she really enjoys life right now.
Unfortunately, Mrs. Duan left for a vacation to 魏国, so we will not be able to show her our final video. To our group, the most difficult part was the process. Because Mrs. Zhao speaks Bai, Mr. Zhao was the translator. We had to keep reminding Mr.Zhao to ask his wife, cause he was the one answering the questions instead of asking Mrs. Zhao.
As for the next Microcampus group, I have a few tips. First off, NEVER stop looking for partners; you will be very glad that you have backups. People will be more open and let you film if there is some kind of close relationship. Second, don’t wait till the last moment, start the filming before hand or else you will be rushing everything in the end. Make sure you check in everyday to see how the movie is coming along, and what needs to be done. Third is to start with the basic then move onto the Chinese history and other historical events.
Answers to Questions
We have read the articles from That's Shanghai magazine. The people who were in the articles we read were Chen Tingtao and Qian Yaqin.
Some questions that could have been a part of the interview process for the articles would be...
1. When were you born?
2. Do you have any memories of your past?
3. Do you have any memories of Chinese history?
4. What was your occupation?
There were three people we considered for our service learning partner. One, we considered Mr. Zhao the retired security guard at YZR spouse. Her name is Mrs. Duan. We think that she would be a good match because Mr. Zhao has been a service learning partner before for the past microcampus groups. She would have been there when he got interviewed and she would have understand what service learning was. Two, a lady who sold footwear named Mrs. Gui. She would have been a great service learning partner though unfortunately heard that during the next day, she had passed away. She had died of an unknown death. We even saw her funeral go by in the town center of SiFangjie. The last person we considered was Mr. Mao's parents. We then figured out that he was already featured in the past group's service learning video.
We finally decided to go with Mrs. Duan because she was the only other person we could do. She is the wife of Mr. Zhao the security guard at YZR. She once was a farmer but now is a retired one.
We decided to ask all of the questions on the list. We would then edit the unwanted questions after we started editing the video. The questions that were the most important that we asked were mostly the required questions. Some specific required questions that we asked that were important are do you have any regrets in your life, of what are you most proud of in your life, and do you have any memories of specific historical events.