Chinese Folk Arts Summer Camp hosted by Rose Elementary School in South Barrington
Rose School in Barrington in Illinois hosted the 2014 Chinese Folk Arts and Culture Camp, sponsored by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Chicago. It was open to all K-5 students interested in Chinese culture. This is the third year the camp has taken place in the Chicago area, but the first time it has been held at Rose.
Nearly 60 students participated. While most of the students enrolled in the camp were from the Barrington area, one student came over from France to take part! The week-long program teaches students about many aspects of Chinese culture. The students learned about the Chinese language and traditional forms of Chinese folk art through enjoyable hands on activities.
On the last day, family and friends were invited to a cultural exhibition program where the students showed what they had been learning all week. Dances included the Wei Zu Plate dance and an Atayel Dance.
The Atayel are indigenous people based in a northern area of Taiwan. Part of their traditional culture is to create ink-based tattoos. Other arts featured were Chinese Acrobatics with hula-hoops, flags and balancing plates, Lucky Paper Cutting (with help from some of the VIP guests), and a tribute to the Chinese New Year with a twin dragon dance.
The twin dragon dance is not frequently performed due to the complexity of its moves, but the young students did a great job! The teaching assistants and parents also got involved at the end and joined in the dances.
Staff from TECO in Chicago attended the closing ceremony on July 25 and offered their congratulations for a very successful summer camp, for so many interested students in the Barrington 220 area.