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MEET BARNARD TEACHING INTERN: CHIAO-CHEN (Jane) CHOU

Where are you from? Where did you grow up?

Taiwan!!! I grew up in Tainan City, which is in the south of Taiwan, and there are lots of historical sites and delicious cuisines.

Where did you graduate from college? What was your major?

I graduated from National Taiwan Normal University, and my major is Applied Chinese Language and Culture, which is designed to equip students with

skills to become Mandarin teachers for foreigners and spread Chinese culture.

When did you first come to San Diego? Is this your first time in the U.S.?

This is my first time coming to San Diego and to the U.S. I return to Taiwan at the end of this school year.

What grade do you teach? How long have you been teaching?

I teach transitional kindergarten for 30 minutes every weekday morning except Wednesday, after that I assist in the kindergarten. Besides, I also co-teach

a free, 45-minute Parent Mandarin class every Wednesday morning at 8:00AM at Barnard’s library. 

Tell us more about the free Mandarin class for parents.

I teach this class with Anya (Chia-En Chang) and Anya is the main speaker. We tried to make the framework this year, expecting every topic can

be connected and used together. There are lots of topics we had taught, and most of them are related to daily life such as numbers, family member,

meals and food (breakfast, lunch, dinner), date (months and day), seasons and the day of week, etc.

We also teach Pinyin, which may be hard for parents to learn. However, I am so impressed that after parents are familiar with Pinyin; they can see Pinyin and

say words or sentences on their own!! We use group practice and group talk a lot. At this time, both of us walk around every group to know what is the most

confusing part we need to explain more. For me, it's a great way that teachers and parents make progress by learning from each other. I really enjoy it!!

What are your favorite foods?

Boba tea, fries, chocolate, blueberries.

What are some things that you want to experience in San Diego/U.S?

There are a bunch of things I want to do such as sky diving, go skiing, and visit National Park, and so on. So far, most of things I experienced are pretty awesome!!

What has surprised you most about the U.S.?

At school, the most surprising thing is the teaching strategy in U.S. It’s a little different from Taiwan. For example, carpet teaching is applied in most of the grades.

This strategy brings teachers and students much closer to each other. Also, teachers here reward good behavior to motivate others instead of giving punishment

to those who didn’t follow directions. As for daily life, the divorce rate here surprised me, but I adapt to most of American lifestyle pretty well.

Why did you go into teaching?

For me, my ambition is becoming a teacher. Based on my personality, I am patient, positive, and considerate. And I am keen to help people, it makes me happy.

In addition, I like to see students becoming a little different from me. Both teachers and students make progress by learning from each other.

What is your biggest hope for our students?

I hope all students can learn in a happy environment. What’s more, I would like to see them grow. Already compared with the first time I came to Barnard, I can tell a

difference in every student. They have become more mature.