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Teaching English in remote village

12-05-2011 08:29 BJT

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Children living in some of China's more remote areas often suffer from scarce resources -- including access to an education that rivals the big cities. Specialist teachers are often unwilling to stay in such places for long, and learning a foreign language is often simply not an option. But one small village in Jilin Province has bucked the trend - thanks to a volunteer teaching English, who’s been working with local kids for years.

This house in Dawan Village, Jilin Province is about to be invaded.

Every weekend, children from the village assemble here -- not to play -- but to learn English.

It’s unusual for a village this size and this remote to even have an English teacher -- let alone one who works for free.

But Zhang Shuang, a college student who was born here, is one of a kind.

She began teaching local children during a summer break a few years ago.

Her class became popular -- so popular that a handful of students turned into a crowd -- and one summer break turned into weekly classes.

English student from Dawan village said: "Learning English is hard, so I came here to learn."

Over the years, Zhang Shuang has become a close friend to many of the children.

Her generous contribution is highly valued by the villagers.

Local villager said: "She covers her own expenses. She brings snacks for the kids everytime she comes. They’re so happy to see her, they always ask when she’ll be back."

But coming back each time is not so easy.

Zhang Shuang lives in Changchun. It takes 4 hours, and three different buses to get to the village.

And she has to work within a very tight budget -- 6 Yuan per day is all she spends on food.

Zhang Shuang said: "Sometimes when the weather is very bad, I have second thoughts about coming. But when I imagine the look on the children’s faces, I know I must go."

Zhang Shuang’s story has touched many people.

Her friends in college founded a volunteering club to encourage more people to get involved.

Over 600 students have already registered -- all ready to follow Zhang Shuang’s example of taking English teaching into some of the Province’s remotest villages.

Zhang Shuang never planned to become a professional teacher -- but to the children of Dawan Village, she’s already an inspiration -- as someone who has changed their lives forever.

 

Editor:Zhang Rui |Source: CNTV.CN

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