Having studied Mandarin for almost half a term, all our Year 7 pupils had the opportunity to experience some different aspects of Mandarin Culture on field day. Their morning focused on three activities: fan dancing, traditional drumming and bean bag sewing with a cultural twist.
Chinese fan dance has been a part of China’s heritage for over two thousand years. It is used to help tell stories and maintain the traditions of Chinese culture as well offering entertainment. By watching the demonstration and having a go themselves, pupils were able to understand that fans are not only functional and decorative, but also play a critical part in passing down Chinese culture.
Just as with fan dance, drumming can be traced back thousands of years in China. First used in battle, drums are now seen as musical instruments, and are very often used at celebratory occasions. Each with their own individual drum, our Year 7s were able to appreciate the instruments at a close range and, more importantly, to play rhythms according to instruction.
The challenges and new learning continued with the bean bags; sewing a cube-shaped bean bag out of square cloths seemed to be a first for many pupils! However, all took the task to heart and tried their very best.