From Red Deer to China

They whet their appetites learning the Mandarin language, now 29 Hunting Hills High School students are about to get a taste of Chinese culture as they embark on a 12-day trip to Beijing and beyond.

With Chase Lajeunesse looking on Quinlan Brown counts through his 500 Yuan about $86 Canadian he will be taking with him to China during a Hunting Hills High School trip over Spring Break. The class is also taking along food items to give to people in China.

With Chase Lajeunesse looking on Quinlan Brown counts through his 500 Yuan about $86 Canadian he will be taking with him to China during a Hunting Hills High School trip over Spring Break. The class is also taking along food items to give to people in China.

They whet their appetites learning the Mandarin language, now 29 Hunting Hills High School students are about to get a taste of Chinese culture as they embark on a 12-day trip to Beijing and beyond.

Grade 12 students Emilea Clinton and Devin Ouellette are especially anticipating the March 30 departure, since both hope to start their post-secondary education at Chinese universities next year.

Clinton said she’s been interested in China’s pop culture, music and literature for several years now; “I’m hoping to get a major cultural experience somewhere completely different, where I’ve never been before.”

Ouellette, who spent 11 months as a Rotary Club exchange student in Taiwan last year, wants to compare that adventure to being in mainland China.

“Taiwan is a democracy and China has a communist government, so I’m interested in seeing how that affects people’s lives,” he added.

Ouellette and Clinton, who are applying for Chinese university scholarships, are among a growing number of Red Deer high school students who are becoming fluent in Mandarin through for-credit classes at Hunting Hills.

Since China is becoming the world’s economic powerhouse, vice-principal Rick Ramsfield believes more young people are considering learning the language a good bet for future employment prospects.

Hunting Hills offers Mandarin classes in Grades 9 to 12 and Notre Dame High School is starting to as well.

Ramsfield said some Edmonton schools offer classes in the Chinese language starting from kindergarten, “and we’re looking at that eventually, as it’s growing in popularity.”

The trip is not only a chance for the students to experience Chinese culture firsthand, but to practise the language they’re learning, said Ramsfield.

He noted that one stop will involve visiting a high school in Chongqing, which is being twinned with Hunting Hills.

“Our students will be meeting students their own age.”

The visit will also include visiting a panda sanctuary, a giant Buddha statue and monkey-overrun temple in Chengdu, seeing the world-famous terracotta soldiers and cycling along the walls of the ancient city of Xian, and visiting the Temple of Heaven and the Forbidden Palace in Beijing.

By seeing the wonders of China, Ramsfield hopes his students develop a deeper appreciation of what many Canadians often take for granted.

He noted 20 million people — or the equivalent of nearly half of Canada’s population — compete for space in Beijing. “They’ll see the closeness of people, how they have to live and get along with each other, and hopefully they will appreciate the space we have here in Canada.”

He also hopes the trip will spark a life-long love of travel.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, confirmed eight additional virus-deaths Monday afternoon including one in central zone. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
New record: Red Deer at 236 active COVID cases

One more death in central zone reported

The City of Red Deer is still repaying two loans for the Sorensen Station parkade, which are contributing to a deficit in the parking revenue fund. (Advocate staff)
Dropping parking revenues in Red Deer are creating a deficit

Loan repayments for the cost of the parkade are straining reserves

Red Deer firefighters look for coloured tags on downtown fire hydrants to determine water pressure levels before connecting their hoses to fight blazes, such as this fire at a low-income housing complex last summer. (Advocate file photo.)
Tagged fire hydrants are some of the City of Red Deer’s new innovations

New ideas are being generated to improve services or save money: general-manager

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
‘Fake’ police officers demand money, Red Deer RCMP warn of scam

Red Deer RCMP are warning the public of a concerning incident where… Continue reading

The sit-down area of Red Deer's Tim Hortons at 3020 22nd St. was closed to the public on Monday because of an "evolving health situation." The drive-through was open and remained busy.
Photo by PAUL COWLEY/Advocate staff
Red Deer Tim Hortons restaurant dining room closed due to “evolving health situation”

Drive-through at Tim Hortons in southeast Red Deer remained open

Idyllic winter scenes are part of the atmosphere of the holiday season, and are depicted in many seasonal movies. How much do you know about holiday movies? Put your knowledge to the test. (Pixabay.com)
QUIZ: Test your knowledge of holiday movies and television specials

The festive season is a time for relaxing and enjoying some seasonal favourites

Vancouver Whitecaps forward Fredy Montero celebrates after scoring a goal against the Los Angeles Galaxy during the second half of an MLS soccer match in Portland, Ore., Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020. The Vancouver Whitecaps are hanging on to several of their young players and continuing contract talks with two veterans, including Montero. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Steve Dipaola
Whitecaps exercise options on seven players, ‘continuing discussions’ with Montero

Whitecaps exercise options on seven players, ‘continuing discussions’ with Montero

Toronto FC forward Pablo Piatti (7) cuts past Vancouver Whitecaps defender Ali Adnan (53) during first half MLS Canadian Championship soccer action in Toronto on Friday, August 21, 2020. Barring a new agreement, Toronto FC is parting ways with designated player Pablo Piatti. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Toronto FC looks for new designated player, opts not to pick up Piatti option

Toronto FC looks for new designated player, opts not to pick up Piatti option

Hamilton Forge FC players celebrate their win over CD Olimpia's during Scotiabank CONCACAF League 2019 action in Hamilton, Ont., Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019. After a season that has taken it from Hamilton to Charlottetown, El Salvador and Panama, Forge FC hopes the Dominican Republic is the last stop on the way to the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter Power
Forge FC just one win away from booking ticket to CONCACAF Champions League

Forge FC just one win away from booking ticket to CONCACAF Champions League

A police officer patrols near the Olympic Symbol being transported on a barge in the Odaiba section Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020, in Tokyo. The five Olympic rings are back in Tokyo Bay. They were removed for maintenance four months ago shortly after the Tokyo Olympics were postponed until next year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)
Olympic rings back in Tokyo Bay; a sign of hope in pandemic

Olympic rings back in Tokyo Bay; a sign of hope in pandemic

Ottawa Redblacks player Brad Sinopoli speaks to reporters as the team clears out of the locker room, in Ottawa on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018. Sinopoli fully understands the challenge Kendall Hinton faced Sunday with the Denver Broncos. The Broncos activated Hinton, a receiver, from the practice roster to become the starting quarterback in Sunday's 31-3 loss to the New Orleans Saints. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Former quarterback Brad Sinopoli can appreciate challenges Hinton faced with Broncos

Former quarterback Brad Sinopoli can appreciate challenges Hinton faced with Broncos

Hamilton Forge FC players Giuliano Frano (8) and David Edgar (30) celebrate their team's win over CD Olimpia's during Scotiabank CONCACAF League 2019 action in Hamilton, Ontario on Thursday, August 22, 2019. Edgar, who announced today he is retiring at the end of the year. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter Power
Veteran Canadian centre back David Edgar to retire at end of the year

Veteran Canadian centre back David Edgar to retire at end of the year

Sanctuary volunteer Angie Birch greets Wolfdog Rue as she goes through her daily chores at the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary, Cochrane Alberta on Monday, Nov. 23, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Dave Chidley
‘My heartdog’: Misunderstood wolfdogs get permanent home at sanctuary near Calgary

‘My heartdog’: Misunderstood wolfdogs get permanent home at sanctuary near Calgary

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and Quebec Premier Francois Legault leave a news conference in Ottawa on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. Kenney says Alberta’s largest hospitals are at 91 per cent capacity due to COVID-19 cases and widespread cancellation of more non-urgent surgeries may be necessary. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Alberta premier says hospitals stressed by COVID-19, more surgeries may be cancelled

Alberta premier says hospitals stressed by COVID-19, more surgeries may be cancelled

Most Read