2016 Chinese-Bridge Summer Camp for Arkansas High School Students

2016 Chinese Bridge-Summer Camp

Open to High School Students

July 15th to 31st, 2016  

Get ready for the most awesome summer adventure of your life!


We are looking for 10-20 excellent and deserving students to join us on this amazing two-week trip in Shanghai and other historical/natural sites and learning Chinese language and culture—-for free!


  1. American citizen;
  2. High school students, age between 14 and 18, grades from 9 to 12;
  3. Non-Chinese learning background and less than 3 years of Chinese learning experiences;
  4. Have great interests in Chinese language and culture;
  5. Healthy enough for international travel;
  6. Be willing to participate in all summer camp activities and comply with requirements.


Deadline for registration: March 31st, 2016 (extended to Apr. 11th


Program Fee:

Confucius Institute will be responsible for the cost in China including food, accommodation and group activities. Students and chaperons will be responsible for international travel fees, international insurance, visa application fees and so on. Registration fee will be $50 for each student.


For more information and registration contact us at:

501-852-0063   Ms. Ava Jiang

501-852-5219   Ms. Lucy Lu

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Human and Nature in the Era of Globalization—2016 UCA-ECNU Symposium



The Chinese Immersion Program for Arkansas High School Students Was Successfully Held by UCACI

On the evening of October 30th, loads of exciting voices broke the tranquility of the rainy night of Mount Eagle Retreat Center when 20 high school students from 7 school districts of Arkansas arrived at the Center to start their two-day-long Chinese Immersion camp with the company of Chinese teachers from Confucius Institute at the University of Central Arkansas.

The students had a tight schedule with well-designed activities in the program. In the first night, they had three activities. The first one was the orientation which informed the students of the mission and the requirements of the. The second one was making Chinese dumplings. Because it was their first attempt, the students were excited throughout this activity from picking up the wrapper, filling in the stuffing to folding patterns on the dumplings. Some of them even shared their “products” on their facebook. Lastly, after having their hand-made dumplings, students watched a Chinese movie —“12 Zodiacs”.

The next morning, a series of Chinese activities took place after the students got up. Firstly, ordering their breakfast with the Chinese words on the flash cards. In order to get their food, students had to use those words and put them into the sentence structure of “I want……”, which turned out to be both challenging and motivating. Then an ice-breaking activity was held in order to make the students get to know each other in a relaxing atmosphere. After this they began to learn and practice various words about fruits, profession, sports, body parts and animals. Apart from learning indoors, there were enjoyable Chinese-style outdoor games too, such as kicking shuttlecock and throwing beanbag. Of all the games, treasure hunting turned out to be the most favored one, in which two groups had to design Chinese clues to direct the other group to find the treasure.

When evening came, the students were divided into four groups to make different Chinese dishes under the instruction of Chinese teachers. The dishes were astonishingly delicious. Each group was very satisfied with their performance. Throughout these games, the teachers were marveled by students’ creativities and learning abilities.

On the third day, Dr. Xiaohong Lu, Deputy Director of UCA Confucius Institute, summarized the program, and expressed her wishes that students could maintain their interests in learning Chinese language and participate in programs designed for high school students by UCACI. After the speech, she granted awards and souvenirs to the students. At the end of the program, a video that captured the three-day life of the students in the program was shown. The young and cheerful faces in the video retold their gains of Chinese and joyfulness in the Chinese Immersion program.

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Public Lecture on Poetry and Culture of the Tang Dynasty by Dr. Stephen Owen

On Oct. 21st, 2015, Dr. Stephen Owen from Harvard University gave a lecture on poetry and culture of the Tang Dynasty in Room 111 of College of Business, UCA. This lecture was sponsored by UCA Confucius Institute and the English Department. Dr. Stephen Owen, devoting himself to Tang poetry study, was a famous sinologist and he called himself “the alien in the world of Tang poetry”. This lecture attracted about a hundred students. Most of them were from College of Liberal Arts and some were from College of Business. Some faculty came all the way from Little Rock to attend the lecture.

The lecture began with a question “Tang poetry—Why is it interesting?” Dr. Owen elaborated this question by quoting Wang Wei’s “Mount Pei Di’s Terrace”, “Stopping by the Temple of Incense Massed”, Liu Zongyuan’s “Snow on the River” and Du Mu’s “The Late Autumn in Qian County”. Through these poems and his translation, he showed his understanding of these representative master pieces of different periods of Tang Dynasty. After the lecture, students and faculty asked questions, such as the relationship between Tang poetry and other forms of literature and the influence that Tang poetry exerted on American modern poems.

Dr. Stephen Owen is one of the most respected experts in early Chinese Literature in America. He devotes his life to studying Chinese classic literature. In 1972, he received his doctor degree from the East Asia Department of Yale University. The dissertation was entitled “Poems of Han Yu and Meng Jiao”. After graduation, he gained a teaching position at Yale University. In 1982, he began to teach in the East Asia Department and Comparative Literature Department at Harvard University. Now he is James Bryant Conant University professor.  His master works are “The Poetry of the Early Tang”, “The Great Age of Chinese Poetry: The High Tang”, “The End of the Chinese ‘Middle Ages: Essays in Mid-Tang Literary Culture’”, “An Anthology of Chinese Literature: Beings to 1911”, “The Cambridge History of Chinese Literature”and etc.

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UCACI successfully held 2015 Arkansas Chinese Teachers Workshop

Confucius Institute at the University of Central Arkansas (UCACI) held 2015 Arkansas Chinese Teachers Workshop from Oct. 9th to 10th in Little Rock. Dr. Frank Lixing Tang, professor and foreign language education specialist from New York University was invited as a keynote speaker to give a presentation at the workshop and Ms. Xuan Wang, NYU alumni and local Chinese teacher from Sidwell Friends School, Washington D. C. was also invited to share her teaching experience with Arkansas Chinese teachers. Dr. Guo-ou Zhuang, Director of UCACI, Dr. Lucy Xiaohong Lu, Deputy Director of UCACI, Hanban teachers and local teachers attended the workshop.

On the first day, Prof. Tang gave a lecture on “Becoming Master Teacher and Teacher Leader”. He elaborated on how to develop from an effective teacher to master teacher and to teacher leader with vivid cases and explained what qualifications a master teacher and a teacher leader should have. After this, the local teachers shared their experience in teaching and classroom management.  The lecture and experience sharing inspired Hanban teachers to discuss their success, failure and confusion in Chinese teaching.

On the second day, the guest speaker Ms. Xuan Wang gave a talk on TPRS, Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling. She introduced the definition and procedure of TPRS and demonstrated how she applied TPRS in her classroom.

After the workshop, Prof. Tang commented “The major feature of Chinese teachers in Arkansas is that they are willing to share, to think and to inquire, and these features will ensure that they can go further in their teaching”.

As an old saying goes “As one piece of fuel is consumed, the flame passes to another. The torch of learning is passed on from teachers to students and from generation to generation.” The torch of teaching Chinese has been passed on from experienced teachers to new teachers. Every teacher present hoped to apply what they learned in the workshop in their future teaching.


UCA Community Enjoys Chinese Traditional Music

“A Night of Chinese Music” held at 7:30, October 3rd in Reynolds Performance Hall at the University of Central Arkansas turned out to be a very successful cultural event. This concert was co-sponsored by Confucius Institute Headquarters, UCA Confucius Institute, and Nanjing University Traditional Instruments Orchestra. It was part of the orchestra’s music tour in America. This music feast not only attracted faculty, staff and students from UCA, but also residents from Conway and Little Rock.

The opening ensemble “Jasmine Flower” brought the audience into the world of Chinese music with its beautiful melody. It was followed by a Gu Zheng solo “An Early Spring Morning on a Snowy Mountain”,  Erhu solo “Birdsong Heard in an Empty Mountain”, ensemble “Wonderful Jiangnan” , and “Lantern Bazaar along Qinhuai River”. When the American song “Yankee Doodle” was played on the traditional instruments, the audience pleasantly clapped their hands along with the music. The concert ended with “Blooming Flowers and a Full Moon”. This concert not only entertained the audience with different forms of music playing, but also with other Chinese cultural elements like calligraphy, Chinese painting and Taiji performance.

The orchestra received a long standing ovation at the end of the concert. One of the audiences asked UCA Confucius Institute staff to teach her how to say “Your performance is fabulous” in Chinese so that she could express her appreciation to the orchestra.

Nanjing University Traditional Instruments Orchestra was founded in 1996, and it is composed of undergraduate students and graduate students from various majors at the university. It has been invited to give performance in America, Britain, Germany, Canada, Russia and Japan many times. Performance at UCA was one of seven stops of their American tour, including New Orleans, Dallas, Houston, and Memphis.

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Confucius Institute Day Celebrated at University of Central Arkansas

To join the celebration of Confucius Institute Day worldwide, UCA Confucius Institute held a series of activities from Sep. 25th to Oct. 3rd, 2015.

This year the theme of Confucius Institute Day is Peace and Understanding. The celebration began with Mid-Autumn Festival Gala on Sept.25th. The event was sponsored by UCACI and Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA).

From Sep. 28th on, UCACI held a week long photo exhibition entitled “The Flying Tigers in China” illustrating the Sino-US efforts to fight against Japanese invaders. It was followed by a lecture on “The Flying Tigers and China” given by Dr. Guo-ou Zhuang, director of UCACI. Then a documentary “Why We Fight—Battle of China” was showed on the movie night of Oct. 1st,2015

Oct. 2nd witnessed the highlight of the celebration in front of the Old Main Hall from 9 am to 4pm. Not only UCA community but also high school students from several school districts participated in a series of cultural activities. They were first entertained by Chinese classical music performed by exchange students from East China Normal University. Then a Chinese popular dance “Little Apple” was performed by Chinese learners from Wynne high school students. Conway High School students impressed the participants greatly when they recited in chorus a famous ancient Chinese poem. Chinese cultural activities like appreciating Chinese knots, panda dolls and Peking Opera masks, playing Chinese chess and shuttlecock, writing calligraphy, wearing Chinese traditional clothes, guessing riddles and tasting Chinese food provided an excellent experience for American students. Among all these activities, getting their Chinese name in calligraphy and their portrait in Chinese ink painting were most popular. Students were waiting in long line in order to get the “coolest” gift they have ever received.

On Oct. 3rd, UCACI demonstrated Chinese art and culture in the annual Conway ArtsFest in Simon Park, in downtown Conway. Getting a Chinese name and portrait painting still attracted much attention of local residents.

On the evening of Oct 3rd, “A Night of Chinese Music” held in Reynolds Performance Hall at UCA marked the end of the celebration. The concert turned out to be a very successful cultural event. It was co-sponsored by Confucius Institute Headquarters, UCA Confucius Institute, and Nanjing University Traditional Instruments Orchestra. This music feast not only attracted faculty, staff and students from UCA, but also residents from Conway and Little Rock.

Confucius Institute Day celebration attracted about 1000 people. It was a real feast to attendants and also a bridge between China and America.

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Experience the Art of Chinese Painting, Feel the Charm of Chinese Medicine

On Sep. 15th,  2015, an interesting activity related to Chinese Culture named Experiencing Acupuncture, was held in Torreyson West, UCA by the Confucius Institute.  Ms. Jiang, a CI teacher, was the presenter. She inherited her skillset from Li Xianzhi,  the founder of the northern school of TCM.  She hoped that American students could have personal contact with TCM and come to accept it.

The activity was prefaced by the introduction of the famous movie “Skin-scraping”. This helped students realize the difference between Chinese and American medicinal culture. The purpose of this activity was to eliminate some of the misconceptions about TCM, while demonstrating its profoundness at the same time. First, Ms. Jiang explained some basic theories of TCM. Then, taking a panda doll as a patient, she demonstrated some basic acupuncture skills and taught students some simple but effective ways to release stress and pain using skin-scraping and massage.  When the students were asked who wanted to experience skin-scraping and massage, the students were so excited that they competed to participate. Due to the enthusiasm of the students, the scheduled one-hour activity was extended to almost two hours. Some students still wanted to experience it even after the activity.

All of the students who were attracted by this activity were from different majors. Some of them had learned Chinese before while others were seeing Chinese acupuncture the first time. We were told that they had heard of TCM before but had never seen it in person, and it was an amazing experience. After being massaged and having his skin scraped, a male student was pleasantly shocked to realize that he could not find the proper word to describe the feeling of it. While the feeling was beyond words, it was nonetheless “relaxing and comfortable.”

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This has been the second activity hosted by the Chinese Culture Club. Before this, Ms. Liu, a CI teacher from the Art Department of Xuzhou Normal School, demonstrated Chinese painting. She taught some basic painting skills to students, focusing on how to paint bamboo, which is “one of the three durable plants in winter.” After this activity, students took their own paintings back home.


Other than the Chinese Culture Club activities, Chinese table was launched this week as well. During Chinese Table, students can not only learn Chinese outside of the classroom, but can also learn how to use it by playing games. These activities and games attracted many Chinese learners and involved some non-Chinese learners as well, as it required them to learn their first bits of Chinese for a prize.  Students said they loved this new form of learning Chinese and are now looking forward to further activities.

Chinese Table and Chinese Culture Club are going to bring forth wonderful activities in the coming three months this semester. By doing so, the Chinese Culture Club will ensure that American students will see the Chinese language as a blend of ancient and modern culture, as well as different but not difficult to learn.


UCACI Dr. Xiaohong Lu Gave A Lecture At College Of Business

On Sep. 18th, Dr. Xiaohong Lu gave a lecture on “How to Do Business Successfully in China” at College of Business, UCA. More than one hundred students attended. Dr. Lu firstly talked about Sino-US business relationship and Arkansas-Chinese business relationship; then she used Geert Hofstede’s cultural dimension theory to explain cultural differences between China and America. She focused on two important terms “face” and “connection” in Chinese culture. Following that was differences in management style and business etiquette. The lecture was concluded by teaching the students several common useful Chinese phrases.



UCACI successfully held 2015 Arkansas Chinese Teaching Workshop

Confucius Institute at University of Central Arkansas ( UCACI) held 2015 Arkansas Chinese Teaching Workshop from March 13th to 14th.  Twenty two Chinese teachers including Hanban teachers and local teachers attended the workshop.


Dr. Guo-ou Zhuang, Director of UCACI gave an opening remark at the workshop. He talked about the development of “Teach in Arkansas” program, which is in partnership with Arkansas Education Department and school districts, and its contribution to the Arkansas Chinese teaching and the localization of Chinese teachers. He encouraged teachers to promote Chinese program in school districts and integrate Chinese learning in secondary education into Chinese course in higher education. While emphasizing the importance of Chinese teacher’s culture adaption and teaching improvement, he expected teachers to have a sense of crisis, meeting the challenge and seizing the opportunity in promoting the Chinese program.


The workshop included experience sharing, group discussion and teaching presentation. First, experienced local teachers gave talks about project- based Chinese class, teaching strategies, classroom management, etc. Afterwards, Chinese teachers were divided into two groups and began to have further discussions about their issues in teaching Chinese. The most discussed issues are class management, differentiation of teaching, promotion of Chinese program and efficient communication with students, school administrators and parents. Teachers shared their experience and recommended teaching tools and materials, exchanging ideas and learning from each other.


On the second day workshop, Dr. Jiazhu, from Department of the World Languages, Literatures and Culture at UCA gave a talk on integrating culture teaching into Chinese class. Then, Hanban teachers teaching in school districts share their experience from their classes.


Teachers all find the workshop very helpful through discussing and sharing with each others, from which they learn the effective teaching procedures and course designs and the way to fit their teaching into the Arkansas foreign language framework. They hope there will be more workshops in the future to improve their teaching skill, to be more efficient in promoting the Chinese program and at the same time to get their own personal and professional development


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