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By Jodi Yim James, Staff Writer
Dr. Martha Bigelow is an Associate Professor at the University of Minnesota in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction of the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD). Bigelow's program, Second Languages and Cultures Education, prepares Mandarin Chinese language teachers to teach in K-12 schools in Minnesota.
The Confucius Institute at the University of Minnesota was named a 2011 Confucius Institute of the Year by the Hanban/Confucius Institute Headquarters. Qijie Li, assistant director, accepted the honor on behalf of the Institute at a ceremony in Beijing, China, on Dec. 12.
The Confucius Institute at the University of Minnesota was one of just four U.S. Confucius Institutes that received the award. Hanban supports nearly 400 Confucius Institutes worldwide and awarded 30 Institute of the Year honors in 2011.
Over the years, the Minnetonka School District and Minnesota have had a relationship and teacher agreement with Hangzhou Foreign language school, located about 108.5 miles southwest of Shanghai, China. On October 27th, a delegation of six education officials from China visited the Minnesota Department of Education to renew the Minnesota-China Teacher Exchange Program Agreement. The success of the Teacher Exchange Program over the last 25+ years provided the foundation for Minnetonka to become the state's leader in Mandarin Chinese Education at the K-12 level.
By Jodi Yim James, Staff Writer
Janice Holter Kittok has recently been the World Languages Specialist at the Minnesota Department of Education. She is currently the Content Lead for World Languages in the Minneapolis Public Schools. Kittok has 30 years of experience as a K-12 teacher, college instructor, dean, and educational leader. She has won many professional honors and awards. She also serves on professional boards. Kittok holds Minnesota K-12 Principal and Spanish Licenses.
By Greg Hugh, Staff Writer
The significance of St. Therese Chinese Catholic School (STCCS) earning a 2011 National Blue Ribbon School Award is that less than 10 years ago, it faced the possibility that it might not survive. As the only Chinese Catholic school in the Midwest, it has encountered many challenges and changes since its founding in 1941.
By Jodi Yim James
In China’s Beijing Olympics opening ceremony the Hanzi character of <span style="font-family: " gothic";="Gothic" ;"="" font-size:="font-size:" 10pt;="10pt;" mso-bidi-font-family:="mso-bidi-font-family:" 'ms="'MS" gothic';="Gothic';" mso-ascii-font-family:="mso-ascii-font-family:" verdana;"="Verdana;" "="">和, “hé”, meaning harmony, was significantly a part of the beautiful eye-candy display. Indeed, harmony is an important value of Chinese culture. This particular character also means “and” so it is one of the first characters that students of the Chinese language learn. When world-renowned Chinese film director designed the 2008 opening ceremonies, surely he intended for <span style="font-family: " gothic";="Gothic" ;"="" font-size:="font-size:" 10pt;="10pt;" mso-bidi-font-family:="mso-bidi-font-family:" 'ms="'MS" gothic';="Gothic';" mso-ascii-font-family:="mso-ascii-font-family:" verdana;"="Verdana;" "="">和 to figure prominently.