In collaboration with the Chinese program of Department of Languages Literatures and Cultures (DLLC) as well as the China America Association at the University of Delaware (UDCAA), the Confucius Institute at the University of Delaware (UDCI) organized and sponsored the first “Spring Outing” event on April 13, 2019. The event was held as a picnic on the beautiful pond side between 9:30am-3pm at the Lums Pond State park.
Spring break ended a week ago. However, Newark seems to have just woken up after a long winter season this Saturday. The weather was sunny and warm, surprisingly perfect after a night of heavy showers. Regardless of the still slightly damp picnic benches at the picnic area, about 60 students and professors signed up and came to have nature’s refreshment through the day.
UDCI’s new visiting teachers, Ms. Yan Huang and Ms. Hongping Xiao, arrived the park as the first team early in the morning. They set up an outdoor gallery where guests could enjoy the activities in practicing Chinese calligraphies, making kite crafts, using chopsticks, and folding paper origami.
In addition to the traditional Chinese food catered from a local restaurant, student members from UDCAA skillfully lit up the barbecue and added a thick layer of spring vitality to the morning woods.
All professors from the Chinese program of DLLC joined the event and performed the target language use almost 100% of the time with their students. Several students received the prizes according to the excellent participation through the event.
Students enjoyed running, chatting, and flying kites after the lunch and several field games were played. Winning field team members from the field games received UDCI souvenirs from Dr. Jianguo with Chen, the chair of the Confucius Institute.
There’s nothing like Spring Outing. The students and faculties as well as their guests and families came out together and enjoyed the day of the refreshing spring breeze. As with how the event was firstly initiated, it not only elevated the culture awareness but also expanded the community opportunities, especially for the Chinese program students who were excited to meet new friends while practicing the target language and the culture. The event was successful and well appreciated by all the members and guests who came. There was something for everyone. Many people wished the Spring Outing event could be a proud tradition in the future.