The Consul General of China invited 30 Convent & Stuart Hall students and faculty for a lively cultural exchange and tour, reinforcing the school's relationship with the consulate's Sunshine School.
In early March, a group of 30 students and faculty from Convent & Stuart Hall had a rare chance to meet the Consul General of China in his offices in San Francisco. The visit was part of a cultural exchange with the Sunshine School, run by Consul General Luo Liquan's wife, Madame Qiao Li, for children of Chinese diplomats.
"From the time we stepped off the bus to when we left the consulate, we were treated like VIPs," says Jason Yee, assistant director of auxiliary programs, who organized the trip for After School Program participants. "Their school mascot welcomed our students and ushered us to our location. You could tell the students were just trying to absorb everything that was going on."
After extending a warm welcome, Consul General Luo encouraged students to learn Chinese as a link to better understanding Chinese culture. He then introduced Sunshine School children who performed a long program of traditional songs and dances. Feeling inspired to share their own work, Convent & Stuart Hall students in grades K-6 impressed the audience with an impromptu song in Mandarin.
Next, the students from both schools mingled while moving between activity stations. Having witnessed a spellbinding mask-changing performance just last month, students were excited to make masks of their own. Other activities included intricate paper cutting, calligraphy and a creative chopstick game.
The day concluded with a speech from President Ann Marie Krejcarek, who expressed her appreciation for the opportunity to continue growing the relationship between the schools. Madame Qiao Li visited Convent & Stuart Hall in February for a special New Year performance sponsored by the Chinese Consulate, and Sunshine School children were on campus for a similar exchange last year.
"We are grateful that our school has been invited to participate in this event," Jason says, "and we hope this encourages students to enhance their understanding of Chinese culture."