The Mid-Autumn Festival 中秋节，also known as the Mooncake Festival falls on 1 October 2020, which is also happens to be the National Day of China this year. It is one of the most important Chinese festivals of the year. The typical food for the Mooncake Festival is Mooncake which is round and symbolises family, moon, reunion.
Watch this YouTube video to learn more about the festival:
Chinese Bridge Speech Competition 2020
The 13th "Chinese Bridge" Speech Contest for Foreign Secondary School Students in New Zealand Concludes Successfully
On 2nd August in Wellington, the New Zealand final of the 13th Chinese Bridge Speech Contest for World Secondary School Students ended successfully at the Confucius Institute (CI) at Victoria University of Wellington(VUW). The competition which is run internationally by the Centre for Language Education and Cooperation (CLEC) was supported by the Science and Education Section of the Chinese Embassy, and hosted by the Confucius Institute at Victoria University of Wellington this year. While New Zealand had no community transmission of Covid-19 at the time of this competition, a decision was made to run it in an online format, divided into two parts: speech and talent.
Contestants submitted videos of their talent performance in advance and the winners were announced during the competition. Genelle Ventura of Marist College in Auckland and Jaskiran Rahi of Queen Margaret College in Wellington won the Best Talent Awards for Senior and Junior categories.
Three Confucius Institutes in New Zealand selected 35 contestants from 25 schools in New Zealand's North and South Islands to participate in the competition.
The competition is divided into Junior and Senior categories.
Reina Jones from Whanganui High School won First Place in the Junior group, and Jake Doyle of ACG Parnell College in Auckland won First Place in the Senior group. The top four students in the high school group will represent New Zealand in the finals of the Chinese Bridge Chinese Speech Contest for World Middle School Students.
Tony Browne, chairman of CI at VUW, in his opening remarks to students said “You have qualified for this final because of the skill and the effort you have shown, and because of the achievements you’ve made in studying the Chinese language.
There are over 6,000 secondary school students studying Chinese in New Zealand. From those 6000, only 18 have made it to take part in this senior competition today. You are already winners, you are at the very top of studying Chinese in New Zealand secondary schools.
For many of you, I hope, this will be the beginning of an involvement with Chinese that will take you in directions you don’t yet know. For me, I started my Chinese studies 47 years ago. It has been part of my life ever since. I spent years in China representing the NZ government, eventually as ambassador. But I could been there representing NZ business. I could have been there as a part of our University exchanges. I could been there on a scholarship. I might have been there as a scholar of China. Those are some of the options I hope and expect many of you to take up. You don’t know what direction your career will take you, but I hope China will be part of it. ”
The contestants spoke on the theme of "Fly High with Chinese", or expressed the impact of learning Chinese on them, or sharing their views on the importance of learning Chinese.
Adele Bryant, Director of the Confucius Institute at Victoria University of Wellington, said: “It has been exciting to see how students and teachers have responded to the new online format and we think that this could make it easier for more students to participate in the future. We are pleased to see entrants from areas of New Zealand outside of the main centres and to know that interest in learning Chinese and about China remains strong. The Bridge speech competitions are a great way of bringing these students together and supporting teachers in secondary schools”.
Article supplied by Confucius Institute, Victoria University of Wellington
Chinese Bridge Speech Competition
The annual Chinese Bridge Speech Competition was held online this year. Mission Heights Junior College students actively participated in this event regardless of the difficulties of competing online. Two out of four participating students managed to progress to the final stage of the competition and win third prize in their categories.
It was a great achievement for those students since they had only completed about one term of weekly Chinese lessons. Throughout this competition, students became more confident in speaking Chinese and realized that anything is achievable as long as they put hard work into it. The two students who won third prize were Anmoldeep Kaur and Rasika Walia.
Photos 1 (Left): Anmoldeep Kaur and Photo 2 (Right): Rasika Walia
Article by Juliet Gao, Teacher of Mandarin and Global Studies, Mission Heights Junior College