West High’s Chinese Club

Andrea Ramos

Have you ever wanted to learn more about Chinese culture, participate in fun activities, or eat awesome Chinese snacks? Well then you should head to Chinese club! Chinese club takes place every other Wednesday after school in room 331. They do fun activities such as learning Chinese calligraphy, making Chinese theater masks, and even cooking Chinese food! Snacks are provided during each meeting. It’s a great place to go if you want to learn more about Chinese language, traditions, and culture (or if you just want snacks!). Everyone is welcome no matter what, and all are encouraged to come.

I interviewed West’s Chinese teacher, Mrs. Emmy Luo, to ask her what she wanted people to get from Chinese club. She said, “我要他们 ([I want them] to get to know more about this language and Chinese people and culture).” Sometimes TV, social media, and the news don’t portray things the way they really are. To clear up misconceptions, you have to speak with actual Chinese people. Learning about Chinese culture can help you avoid stereotyping and generalization. Mrs. Luo also said that “我要跟多的人能学中文喜欢我要他们说oh中文有意思,” which translates to, “I want more people to want to learn Chinese and enjoy it. I want them to say, ‘Oh, Chinese is interesting.’”

Chinese club is also a great way to connect with others. Mrs. Luo and Tanya Yu (one of the students who is in charge of the Chinese club) continued to reiterate that it’s supposed to be inclusive.

I’ve visited Chinese club myself, and I found it quite intriguing and enjoyable. They begin every meeting by giving everyone snacks such as jelly sticks, milk candies, green tea candies, or Chinese pretzel sticks. Then we do a group activity. I’ve participated in calligraphy and mask making, both of which were really fun. While we were doing calligraphy, we learned how to write in Chinese and even some new words. We also learned about calligraphy competitions. It was a very educational experience. Then, while making masks, we learned about Chinese opera and the unique ways that it uses masks to convey emotion. We learned the meanings and representations of different colors on the masks. Each meeting, we learn about a different aspect of Chinese culture. It’s very enjoyable and educational.

Chinese club is a great way to learn about Chinese culture and a fun way to make friends. You’ll get to try fun and unique foods each meeting, learn a little bit of a different language, and help bring the West community closer together. Chinese club shines a light on authentic Chinese culture and is welcoming to all. If you want any more information on chinese club or to get updates on what activities they will be having you can go to their instagram @whschinese and you can join the remind for Chinese club by texting @westchina 81010. Hope to see you there!