How can one develop an effective Chinese-American telecollaborative learning program with WeChat or Skype? How can teachers prepare students for the AP Chinese Exam from the readers' perspectives? Experienced teachers presented and discussed these critical issues at the K-12 Chinese-Language Teachers Roundtable on November 11th at Seton Hall University. In this meeting, Dr. Han Luo from Lafayette College shared her research about using WeChat and Skype to build bridges among Chinese learners in the US and college students in China. Many American students feel frustrated when they cannot find native speakers to talk to when learning Chinese, but Dr. Luo's program provided an amazing chance for students of different areas to communicate or practice what they have learned.
In the following session, Ms. Liping Meng, an experienced Chinese teacher at Montville Township High School, presented her ideas about why and how to prepare students for the AP Chinese Exam. Ms. Meng impressed the participants with the quality of her students' excellent work and guidelines she developed.
From their perspectives of exam readers, Ms. Mali Ou, Chinese teacher from Watchung Hills Regional High School; Ms. Peisong Xu, senior Chinese lector of Yale University; and Ms. Jennifer Wu, Chinese lecturer from Rutgers University, also shared their invaluable experience about grading various sections of the AP Chinese Exam. By analyzing the scoring guidelines and showing authentic examples, these presenters demonstrated how the AP Chinese Exam readers evaluate students and provided helpful advice for both teachers and their students.
All the speakers, except Dr. Luo, are alumni of the Asian Studies program at Seton Hall. In conjunction with the New Jersey Chinese Cultural Studies Foundation, Seton Hall's Chinese Program has co-organized the event for the past several years. This year's roundtable is also part of the 2017 University International Month Celebration. The annual conference has become one of the most important opportunities for Chinese teachers in New Jersey and New York to share their experiences, exchange ideas, and build up networks of professional contacts. A good number of Asian Studies alumni and current graduate students in the Teaching Track attended the event.