Day 6 – School Visit, Silk Factory and Tai Chi

Today we woke up at 6:30, we had to be down at breakfast by 7:00 am. This was our first breakfast at the new hotel and it was really nice! We could even have some chicken feet! We had to leave by 8:00 am to arrive at our sister schools.

Our school which we were going to was Suzhou Industrial Park Xinggang School. This school has over 2000 students and is 4 stories high! Once we finished breakfast we went to meet April, Andrews mum. We all left to go the Xinggang School and met Bob and Andrew as well as some other Chinese students. We went to a classroom and had an address and welcome from the principal and Mr Harvey gave her the gifts from our school.

After this we exchanged gifts with Bob and Andrew and received some lovely handmade gifts from them! After we had finished with the gifts we had an art class with the students. In this class we did tie dye art using tissues and watercolor paint to make some beautiful patterns (Mr Harvey is going to do this when he gets home!).

The next class was a Chinese music class and we did the peacock dance, which is quite famous in China. in the dancing we broke it up into steps which made it a whole lot easier! As for the singing we sang the song properly, like Do Re Mi and in ‘la’ and then learnt the Chinese lyrics to the song. Once we had some this we put the dancing and the singing together! There is a funny video of Mr Harvey doing the dance which he will have to show you!
When we had finished it was time for lunch.
We went as a group down to the cafeteria. The cafeteria is where all the students and staff eat lunch each day. They could fit over 600 people in and we were sitting on a raised area where the staff usually sit. For lunch at the sister school we had pork and rice, beef and tofu, fish soup and some veggies. All students have this meal for lunch as part of school and it was massive and yummy! Once we had finished we needed to make sure all out dishes went away and our area was tidy (just like at school!).Then it was time to say goodbye to our friends until tomorrow.

When we got back to the hotel it was pouring down rain, so instead of doing Tai Chi in the park, we had to do Tai Chi on the bank of the Jing Ji lake undercover. We learnt Tai Chi from a master who took us through the basic steps. These were really hard and we held one pose for so long we almost fell over!

After this we headed by bus to the Number 1 Silk Factory in Suzhou. As we wandered through the silk factory, we learned all about the stages of silk worms and how the Chinese use their silk to make scarves, quilts and clothes! Did you know that in each silk worms cocoon had 1.6km of silk thread in it! All the quilts at the factory and made by hand a take a long time to make!

We went to dinner at a Chinese restaurant in Old Suzhou. This is the ancient part of Suzhou with lovely old buildings and canals! We had so much food and plates just kept coming out. We tried to say we’re “full no more” but at they just kept coming! It was a really nice meal, but we had to run back to the bus in the pouring rain!

We are looking forward to another day at Xinggang Tomorrow!

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