Today in Guangzhou it is 15C and clear
Teaching Western Culture sounds easier that it is. Yesterday I tried to throw together a powerPoint on Christmas and quickly realized I could spend more time preparing the lesson on Christmas than some people spend celebrating it.
As any good teacher will tell you, it is not what you put into your lesson but what you leave out that makes it great. Give them enough information to pique their curiosity without boring them to death.
Christmas is really about loving your fellow man. Families get together, putting aside their differences, to celebrate a meal together and have a good time. Often we see certain people only at Christmas and we get reacquainted with their lives. The black sheeps of the family are there and embraced. People that are forgotten most of the year are invited to celebrate and can feel loved for at least one day of the year.
What better way to show the true meaning of Christmas than by showing pictures of my own Christmas’s. The students get to laugh at weight gains, hair loss and old fashions while seeing Christmas trees, food and gifts.
This year has many first’s for me. My first time living in a country where I have absolutely no understanding of the language or customs. My first time being a visible minority albeit a respected one. My first taste of a chicken foot.
It will also be my first Christmas away from home. It will be the first time in almost 30 years that I will not see uncle Rodrigue sing “Cantique de Noël”. I never miss his powerful rendition of this classic French Christmas song, as his singing it is one of the highlights of Christmas for me. At over 70 years old, he can still belt it out.
I showed the video below to my Chinese students and for the first time, the class went silent. (My brother Jean is on the piano).
I have already watched this video several times and it will certainly be played in my home on Christmas day. I even brought in an external sound system to school, as the computer speakers just don’t do uncle Rod justice.
Thank you uncle Rod for being a wonderful part of my Christmas celebrations.