Chinese teachers bring martial arts to US students

LOS ANGELES (Xinhua) – A group of 30 Chinese physical education (PE) teachers visited four primary schools in the United States in a week, bringing martial arts education to local students.

They visited West Tualatin Valley Elementary and Woodstock Elementary in Portland in the northwest US state of Oregon and taught local students the Five Ancestors Fist, a southern Chinese martial art that consists of principles and techniques from five styles.

Earlier in the week, the Chinese teachers talked with Chad Fenwick, the advisor of physical education at Los Angeles Unified School District about America’s PE education in the recent decade before visiting Harry Bridges Span School and Utah Elementary in Los Angeles in southern California.

The teachers participated in PE classes together with local teachers and students.

“This is the first time for me to visit the US and talk with teachers and students here,” said Lin Meizhen, a PE teacher from southeast China’s Fujian Province. “The most important thing I learnt is that we should always encourage our students to help to develop their interests in sports.” Zhang Peiying, a teacher from east China’s Shandong Province, demonstrated Tai Chi and Kungfu in Utah Elementary which impressed both local students and teachers.

The 30 PE teachers are the winners of Nike’s 2018 Active Schools Innovation Awards held in Beijing this July.

In 2013, Nike joined hands with China’s Ministry of Education to launch and promote the Active Schools initiative in an effort to encourage the development of physical education in schools, according to Xu Lin from Nike’s Global Community Impact department.

The innovation awards under the Active Schools programme has honoured 100 teachers this year from nearly 1,500 applicants for showcasing excellent practices in elementary school physical education.

So far, over 3,800 primary schools and one million school students from China’s 25 provinces have benefitted from the programme.