© 2023 by Cici Jingyuan Kong

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My Mandarin Language Assistant (MLA) Experience
​                             我的汉语助教经历

I came to Wellington to work through the Confucius Institute's Mandarin Language Assistants (MLAs) programme. The main aim of the MLA programme is to increase opportunities for New Zealand students to learn Chinese and experience Chinese culture. The institute carefully selects, and sends young Chinese graduate to New Zealand schools, to assist and support the efforts of those schools in the teaching of Chinese. I was selected and sent to work for Confucius Institute(CI) at Victoria University of Wellington(VUW) in 2013 and 2014, as a Mandarin Language Assistant.

 

我是通过国家汉办孔子学院的“汉语助教”项目来到惠灵顿工作的。这个项目旨在增加新西兰学生学习汉语,体验中国文化的机会。年轻的中国高校毕业生或在读研究生经过国家汉办孔子学院的严格选拔,被派往新西兰各地的学校,承担学校里的汉语教学工作。2013年至2014年,我在维多利亚大学的孔子学院担任汉语助教。

 

My work included:

  • Worked in the office (newsgathering, translation, artist/musician guests’ reception)

  • Offered Chinese Language classes for students at Victoria University and primary aged children at a community centre

  • Offered music workshops in schools and communities

  • Performed in quality events

  • Offered traditional Chinese music lessons to the local citizens

  • Organized weekly Mandarin Corner at VUW

 

我的工作包括办公室的文职工作(新闻采写,活动摄影,材料翻译,学生答疑,艺术家/音乐家接待,志愿者联络等)、维大中文系的汉语辅导、社区的儿童汉语课、音乐工作坊、音乐表演、音乐教学和每周一次的汉语角。

 

I still remembered my first Chinese teaching experience was an introduction of Chinese music for the students in University, although they cooperate I still feel nervous.  Apart from teaching Chinese for Adults, I also teach Chinese classes for children in a community centre. They are mostly Chinese but can’t write and read. In my last Chinese community class, some of the students looked sad, they kept asking me when do I come back and start teaching Chinese again. I have mixed feelings but much inspired. I can’t say I am a brilliant teacher but a real friend with responsibility, loyalty and love.

 

记的我在维大中文系的第一堂汉语课是给三年级的学生们介绍中国音乐。尽管学生们都很配合,我还是感觉很紧张。除了成人汉语教学,我也在社区开展儿童汉语教学。这个社区的大部分孩子是出生在新西兰的中国人,他们的听说读写能力比较有限。最后一堂社区汉语课,好几个孩子问我什么时候再回来这里教汉语。我虽然很不舍得离开他/她们,却也感受到了他/她们对我的认可。我可能不是他/她们眼中最优秀的老师,但我一定是他/她们真诚可靠的朋友。

 

In the farewell party in 2014, I delivered a speech as an MLA representative. I mentioned that "I want to be a music therapist. I never give up my dream even I am still confronted with some difficulties. Furthermore, my experience made me feel more forcefully as if the voice comes into my body. Music is my passion, I can't live without music, I want to help others with my music. So, I am going to come back to New Zealand again and study music therapy."

 

2014年的汉语助教欢送会,我作为汉语助教的代表之一做了演讲。我提到了:”我想成为一名音乐治疗师,即使路途艰辛,我也不会放弃梦想,而我的经历也让我更加坚定自己的梦想。音乐是我的热情所在,是我生命的养分,我想要用音乐去帮助需要帮助的人。我会再次回到新西兰,学习音乐治疗”。

 

Four years later, my dream comes true and I become a music therapist. I am grateful to have countless support, encouragement, help and inspiration from my family, teachers, colleagues, friends and students. The experience of being an MLA in New Zealand will never fade in my life.

 

四年后,我的梦想实现了。我成为了一名音乐治疗师。我很感激求学和工作的路上为我提供帮助、支持和鼓励的人。他/她们包括我的家人、老师、同事、朋友和学生。而在新西兰这两年的汉语助教经历也成为了我人生中不可多得的财富。