So the Foreign Language Institute is officially over. I’ll recap on some of the activities we did in the last week. We had an opportunity to spend time with native Chinese speakers while cooking authentic Chinese food. Zhan Lao Shi brought her friends up to the Spruance house and we spent the day cooking, eating and chatting in Chinese. Many of us learned how to cook fried rice (or 炒饭). We also excelled in our ability to speak about or likes and dislikes and also current events.
The last couple days of class were intense to say the least. We went through an entire chapter of work out of the textbook every other day, which means that every other day we had a 100+ point test. Our final consisted of 3 parts, written, listening and an oral presentation. Our written test was at least 4 pages long and was written entirely in characters. The listening section was a dialogue Zhan Lao Shi read about changing subways and using all forms of public transportation. The oral presentation was done in small groups. We had to come up with a dialogue involving all the things we had learned up until then. The presentation had to be technically sound and yet we were encouraged to make it humorous. These tests all proved to be difficult.
In the end I was able to greatly increase my Chinese language abilities and receive a high grade in the class. For anyone who is interested in taking Chinese as a foreign language I would greatly recommend it. Both Chen Lao Shi and Zhan Lao Shi are excellent teachers who want to see their students succeed. For now,