Thursday, March 09, 2006

Reports on China -- helping hand from our perspective

We've been to China three times in the past two years. Each time, my sons made presentations to their respective classes and even grades at their school. This activity has been rewarding for all involved and there were even a bunch of emails back and forth from Pittsburgh to China when we were there with progress updates.

As is our custom, the reports are put on-line and put into the public domain for others to enjoy. And, they do. This email came recently from a mom and her fifth grade daughter in Des Moines, Iowa.
I was trying to help my fifth grade daughter find information on China for her school report when I came accross this report. I just wanted to say how wonderful the work turned out and how he even helped an adult like me understand China alot more! Super super job! I couldn't begin to praise him enough! The information on China that we have found is just so overwhelming that we didn't know where to begin and this report of his has helped put things into more of a perspective for us. I had to giggle on one part where he mentioned that there was a lot to keep track of with the symbols and beliefs, because that seemed to be true with a number of things about China!

Awsome work! I thank him for putting this all together and sharing it with the rest of us, now it will make our searches for the report a little easier.
Thank you.
Bonnie & Crystal
My wonder in all this is about being -- how do you say -- parochial. When other candidates stand up and say I lived my entire life in this same neighborhood -- I wonder. Is that a plus or a minus? When someone knows these streets around this five-mile corner of the world, does that mean that the experiences of seeing Hong Kong, Chicago or even Vienna are going to be so foreign that the issues won't connect from there to here?

I've coached swimming and coached state record breakers in New England, Ohio, Illinois and Pennsylvania. I know what's offered in suburban districts and what isn't offered in city schools. I've coached and lived in Los Angeles, Texas and Boston. Things work certain ways in certain places -- and often the mindset is unlike that we have here.

Perspectives matter. Ideas matter.

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