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Teaching About Asia - January 2010

USCI's monthly e-newsletter on news and resources for teaching about Asia
January 1, 2010

 Teaching About Asia Newsletter


January 2010


The Little Tokyo Korea Japan Festival, to be held on February 6, will celebrate cultural exchange between neighboring communities.

2010 brings a series of East Asia-focused film and documentary screening events to Los Angeles.  On February 10, USCI will host filmmakers Brent E. Huffman and Xiaoli Zhou as part of our ongoing documentary series and screen their short films on China`s economic role in Africa and the Mosuo matriarchal culture in southwest China. The screening is free and both Huffman and Zhou will be on hand to discuss their work. On February 6, the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center (JACCC) and the Korean Cultural Center, Los Angeles (KCCLA) will co-sponsor the Little Tokyo Korea Japan Festival, which will screen three films: Tina Yanagimoto`s documentary New Beginnings - Cultural Harmony in Little Tokyo, the award-winning Korean film Rough Cut and a recent remake of Akira Kurosawa`s Tsubaki Sanjuro.

Also included are listings of funding and learning opportunities available to K-12 educators. Funding programs include awards for teaching excellence, grants for environmental awareness programs and more.  Learning opportunities include summer programs on Korean history and culture, East Asian literature and the "China century."  Those interested in hosting a Chinese or Arabic language teacher or travel abroad programs specially designed for educators can find additional details below.

Please share this newsletter with your colleagues and encourage them to subscribe by visiting the USCI website`s newsletter subscription page and selecting the "K-12 Education" subscriber category.

In this issue:

Asia in the Classroom - USC campus events
Asia in Los Angeles - Citywide events
Funding Opportunities for Teachers
Learning Opportunities for Teachers
New  Web Resource on Asia
Museum Exhibitions on Asia
Teachers on Asia

♦  Asia in the Classroom - USC campus events

⇒  USCI Documentary Series - Short films: The Colony and The Women`s Kingdom

Date: Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Time: 6:00 to 8:00 pm
Location: USC, Leavey Library Auditorium
Cost: Free

The U.S.-China Institute (USCI) presents a screening of two short films, The Colony and The Women`s Kingdom, as part of its documentary series. Join directors Brent E. Huffman and Xiaoli Zhou for a Q&A following the screening.

The Colony is a short documentary about China’s aggressive economic role in Africa, which many compare to colonization. It is one of the first films to provide a close-up view of the Chinese who are working and living in Africa. Through the personal stories of several Chinese entrepreneurs in Dakar, the capital city of Senegal, The Colony examines the trend of China`s expansion in Africa as well as the relationship between Chinese and African people.

The Women`s Kingdom offers a rare glimpse into a society virtually unheard of ten years ago and that is now often misrepresented in the media. Keepers of one of the last matriarchal societies in the world, Mosuo women in a remote area of southwest China live beyond the strictures of mainstream Chinese culture – enjoying great freedoms and carrying heavy responsibilities.

⇒  USCI Lecture - Local Environmental Politics in China: Explaining Policies Implementation Gap and assessing its implications

Speaker: Ran Ran, USCI Postdoctoral Fellow

Date: Thursday, February 11, 2010
Time: 4:00 to 6:00 pm
Location: USC, University Club, Pub Room
Cost: Free

Environmental deterioration, particularly since the booming economic development in the last 30 years, has generated tremendous social economic, public health, and security problems in China which have had complex political implications not only in domestic but also in the international realm. A paradoxical problem is: on the one side, Chinese authorities show great awareness of environmental problems and provide a high-quality framework for pursuing sustainable development by constructing a comprehensive and modern set of environmental policies. However, on the other side, many of the environmental policies have produced outcomes with little concrete effect.

Ran Ran`s research defines the difference between the central government’s official environmental policies and these policies’ practical outcomes at the local levels as the “environmental policy implementation gap.” Based on fieldwork in three cities in China and documentary analysis, her research seeks to explore the dynamics of the environmental policy implementation gap at local levels in China, and its implication for Party-State legitimacy and “authoritarian resilience."

⇒  Dance Showcase - USC`s Traditional Chinese Dance presents Dance to a New Year

Date: Saturday, February 27, 2010
Time: 7:00 pm
Location: USC, Bovard Auditorium
Cost: Free

"Dance to a New Year" is a Chinese cultural performance showcase portrayed through dances choreographed and participated by the members of the University of Southern California`s Traditional Chinese Dance (TCDance). TCDance is the first and only Chinese dance group at USC, founded in the fall of 2005 by Jennifer Sun to explore, promote, and educate the public about Chinese culture and Chinese traditional and folk dance by performing at events on and off campus in the Los Angeles area. 

♦  Asia in Los Angeles - Citywide events

⇒  KCCLA Weekly Cinema - TV Drama: Reputable Family

Date: Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Time: 7:30 pm
Location: Korean Cultural Center (KCCLA), 5505 Wilshire Blvd, LA, CA 90036, 3rd Floor Ari Hall
Cost: Free, English subtitles provided

KCCLA will screen the first episode of the TV drama Reputable Family. In a time of strong class division, one man begets generosity to the poor that ignites a wave of change. With Korean stars In Pyo Cha and Go Eun Han. 

⇒  Festival - Little Tokyo Korea Japan Festival

Date: Saturday, February 6, 2010
Time: 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Location: Aratani/Japan America Theater, 244 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, CA 90012
Tickets: $20; $15 for JACCC members and Group+10 (handling charge may apply)

Sponsored by the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center (JACCC) with the Korean Cultural Center, Los Angeles (KCCLA), The Japan Foundation, Los Angeles and the Japan Korea Society, the Little Tokyo Korea Japan Festival is a day-long celebration of cultural exchange between neighboring communities.

Showing at the festival will be Tina Yanagimoto`s documentary New Beginnings - Cultural Harmony in Little Tokyo, which chronicles the history of Little Tokyo and how Japanese and Korean residents are building bridges of friendships and harmony. Featured films includes the Korean award-winning 2008 Rough Cut, followed by the 2007 remake of Akira Kurosawa`s Tsubaki Sanjuro.  Live performances and lunch to follow.

Additional details and ticket information can be found here:

⇒  JACCC Film Screening - Harimaya Bridge

Date: Sunday, February 28, 2010
Time: 2:00 pm
Location: Aratani/Japan America Theater, 244 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, CA 90012
Tickets: $12; $10 for JACCC members and Group+10 (handling charge may apply)

Harimaya Bridge is the story of an African-American man who must travel to rural Japan to claim some important items belonging to his late estranged son. While there, he discovers life-altering secrets.  Starring Ben Guillory, Saki Takaoka, Misa Shimizu and Danny Glover.

Additional details and ticket information can be found here:

♦  Funding Opportunities for Teachers

Announcements for teacher funding opportunities are regularly posted in the "Funding opportunities for teachers" section of our "Asia in My Classroom" web forum. To become a registered user (enabling you to post to access and post in the forum), please e-mail us your request along with your name, school, and the grades and subjects you teach.

Below is a sampling of current grant opportunities for K-12 educators:

⇒  Disney Friends for Change Grants

Deadline: January 29, 2010

Disney`s Friends for Change is a program that encourages kids everywhere to take steps together with their friends to help the planet. The Friends for Change Grants will fund kids` projects that help the environment and will look to engage children ages 5-18 as leaders in their communities. Disney, working with YSA, will award 150 $500 grants throughout 2010. Disney`s Friends for Change Grants are open to schools, organizations and individuals planning service projects and will focus on projects implemented by children and youth ages 5-18.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Service-Learning Excellence in Teacher Education Award

Deadline: January 29, 2010

The National Service-Learning Partnership is joining with the State Farm Companies Foundation and the International Center for Service-Learning in Teacher Education (ICSLTE) to honor teacher education programs that make a significant commitment to improving the quality of teaching and learning in preparing teachers and schools leaders to use service-learning as an instructional strategy. Nominations must be received by January 29, 2010. The 2010 honoree will be publicly recognized at the State Farm® Awards Celebration at the 2010 National Service-Learning Conference in San Jose, CA, March 24-27, 2010.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Coming Up Taller Awards

Deadline: January 29, 2010

The President`s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities is inviting nominations for its Coming Up Taller Awards, which recognize and reward excellence in after-school and out-of-school arts and humanities programs. Award recipients receive $10,000 each, an individualized plaque and an invitation to attend the annual Coming Up Taller Leadership Enhancement Conference.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Amgen Award for Science Teaching Excellence (AASTE)

Deadline: February 5, 2010

The Amgen Award for Science Teaching Excellence is an annual awards program that recognizes extraordinary contributions by K-12 educators across the U.S. and Canada who are elevating the level of science literacy through creativity in the classroom and motivation of students. Thirty-four science teachers will be awarded an unrestricted cash grant of $5,000, and their schools will receive a restricted grant of $5,000 to be used to expand or enhance the school’s science program, purchase new science resources, or further the professional development of their science teachers.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Sprint Character Education Grants

Deadline: February 5, 2010

Through the Sprint Character Education Grant Program, the Sprint Foundation will award grants to school districts and individual schools to fund the purchase of resource materials, supplies, equipment and software that facilitates and encourages character education among K-12 students. With a national reach, the program is open to all US public schools (K-12) and US public school districts. The Sprint Character Education Grant program will accept applications for Character Education programs that promote youth leadership, youth volunteerism, school pride and a positive school culture.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Lowe’s Toolbox for Education Grant Program

Deadline: February 12, 2010

Raise up to $5,000 for your school in minutes. It’s almost that easy when you take advantage of Lowe’s Toolbox for Education grant program. Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation knows how hard people work for their kids and community. They are dedicated to helping parent-teacher groups achieve even more for schools. Apply for the Toolbox for Education Grant now and build on your success with a Lowe’s grant.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  AED Distinguished Fulbright Awards in Teaching program

Deadline: February 15, 2010

The Academy for Educational Development (AED) invites applications for the 2010-2011 cycle of the Distinguished Fulbright Awards in Teaching program. The program seeks highly qualified and experienced K-12 teachers from the United States and eight other countries to conduct a variety of professional development activities during a three to six month period. Selected and approved teachers will:

1. Enroll in graduate level classes at a host university
2. Complete a "capstone" project which will be practical in nature and relevant to trends in teaching and learning practices
3. Design and give lectures and/or workshops for host country teachers
4. Observe and assist with classes in host country local schools
5. Engage in other teaching related activities

At the completion of the Fulbright grant, teachers from the United States will be expected to share the knowledge and experience gained in other countries with their students and colleagues at their home schools and communities. Participating countries: Argentina, Finland, India, Israel, Mexico, Singapore, South Africa, and the United Kingdom (U.K.). Applications must be submitted electronically and in hard-copy to the AED office by February 15, 2010.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Learn and Serve America Higher Education Grants

Deadline: March 9, 2010

Subject to the availability of appropriations for fiscal year 2010, the Corporation for National and Community Service (the Corporation) will award an estimated seven to nine individual institutions ranging from approximately $85,000 to $200,000 annually for a project period of up to three years, and an estimated seven to eleven consortia ranging from approximately $200,000 to $500,000 for a project period up to three years. The purpose of the Learn and Serve America Higher Education program is to support institutions of higher education that use innovative service-learning programming to meet the needs of local communities.

Additional information can be found here:

♦  Learning Opportunities for Teachers

Korean Educator Academy - Korean History & Culture and the Korean American Experience Seventh Annual Seminar for K-12 Educators

Deadline: March 1, 2010

Sponsored by the Korea Academy for Educators and the Korean Cultural Center, Los Angeles (KCCLA). This five-day seminar offers a unique opportunity to learn about Korea’s history and rich culture, the Korean-American experience, and provides outstanding resources and lessons. 

Participants also become familiar with the Korean Cultural Center’s extensive library and video collection, its galleries of traditional and modern art, varied programs (including classes in the Korean language), and exceptional cultural performances. Participants become more knowledgeable about Korea and its ancient heritage and more effective in meeting the needs of Korean-American students and their families. They receive materials (many free books, 20 PowerPoint slide lessons, DVDs, Standards-based lessons for K-12 classes, and extensive classroom resources) and information about fellowship opportunities to study and travel in Korea.

There is a $75 refundable deposit for applicants. The application, the required deposit, and the date of receipt will determine acceptance in this program. Four units of credit (quarter system) will be available from UCLA Extension. Fellowships will be available for teachers who live more than 60 miles from Los Angeles and will include airfare, a hotel stay in Koreatown, and $150 to cover additional expenses.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒ University of Colorado Program for Teaching East Asia - 2010 China Summer Institute

Deadline: March 5, 2010

The Program for Teaching East Asia at the University of Colorado invites applications to its 2010 summer institute, a one-week program examining “China’s Century? Global Issues, Classroom Applications.”

Designed primarily for secondary social studies teachers, the institute will run from July 19 to 23, 2010 and will consider China’s role in the world through examination of domestic and international issues. The program offers teachers a unique opportunity to consider these issues with specialists who will share diverse perspectives on a “Chinese Century.”

Up to 20 educators will be selected for the program on a rolling-admission basis from January 20 to March 5, 2010. Application deadline is March 5, 2010. Teachers selected for participation will pay a modest registration fee. All other major costs of the institute are covered by a grant from the Freeman Foundation. This support includes a generous travel stipend, dormitory-meal package, living stipend, and resource materials. Three graduate credits through the University of Colorado will be available at participant expense, pending course approval.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Indiana University East Asian Studies Center - 12th annual Teaching East Asian Literature in the High School Workshop

Deadline: March 8, 2010

The East Asian Studies Center at Indiana University invites applications for its 12th annual Teaching East Asian Literature in the High School Workshop.

The workshop will take place on the campus of Indiana University Bloomington from July 11 to 18, 2010. Each morning Monday through Friday, history professors will lead lectures and discussions on specific facets of China, Japan, and Korea that are pertinent to the literary works covered. Topics discussed will include history, religion, culture, family and gender, and language. Each afternoon literature professors will discuss the short stories, novels, and poetry that participants will have read prior to arrival at the workshop, focusing on universal as well as culture-specific aspects of the works. After the literature discussions, a high school world literature teacher with experience teaching East Asian literature will act as a curriculum consultant, leading strategy sessions on how to teach the works at the high school level.

Participants will receive a set of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean literary works that will be covered in the workshop and be provided with accommodations in the Indiana Memorial Union Biddle Hotel and at least one meal a day. You will also have the option of purchasing three graduate credits from Indiana University at the in-state rate. After the workshop concludes, each participant will submit a complete lesson plan based on one of the literary works covered. On successful submission of the lesson plan, the participant’s school will receive a $300 book-buying grant which can be used to purchase materials for teaching East Asian literature. Participants are responsible for a $60 registration fee, transportation to and from Bloomington, and any food that is not provided by the workshop.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  TCLP - Host a Chinese or Arabic exchange teacher

The Teachers of Critical Languages Program (TCLP), a program of the U.S. Department of State`s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, is designed to expand schools` abilities to teach Chinese and Arabic, placing experienced EFL teachers from China and Egypt in American K-12 schools for an academic year where they teach Mandarin or Arabic language and culture.

Applications for K-12 schools in the U.S. to host a Chinese or Arabic exchange teacher are now available. Applications, due in February 2010, are welcomed from public and private schools of any level from K-12 in the nation. Candidates are encouraged to articulate their visions for their foreign language programs, and TCLP staff welcomes comments and questions.

Additional information can be found here:

⇒  Global Exploration for Educators Organization (GEEO)

Global Exploration for Educators Organization (GEEO) is a 501c3 non-profit organization that helps and encourages educators to travel abroad. GEEO hopes to make America more outward-looking by helping teachers travel and then giving them an effective way to share these experiences in their classrooms. GEEO is now taking reservations for summer travel programs to India, Panama, Peru, Tunisia, Southern Africa (South Africa, Mozambique, Botswana and Zimbabwe) and China.

Educators can earn graduate school credit and professional development credit while seeing the world. Trips are designed for teachers and include activities such as school visits and homestays that give participants authentic exposure to local culture. Trips are also deeply discounted so as to be affordable to teachers. GEEO also helps teachers find funding to subsidize the cost of the trips.

Additional information can be found here:

♦  New Web Resource on Asia

⇒  Asian Art Museum (San Francisco) now on iTunes U

The Asian Art Museum is now on iTunes U.  iTunes U is a portal in Apple’s iTunes Store wherein educational institutions can provide free, high-quality downloadable content for the Mac, PC, iPod or iPhone. Users will need Apple’s iTunes application to access iTunes U. To download a free version of iTunes for Mac or PC, visit:

The Asian Art Museum’s engaging site on iTunes U enables the museum to extend its educational mission by reaching further beyond the museums’ walls. The content featured on the site includes a diverse range of multimedia resources on Asian art and culture such as audio guides and videos on the museum’s acclaimed collection and special exhibitions, public lectures by renowned scholars, educator resource packets and art activities, footage from museum performances, events and demonstrations, short documentaries and more.

To begin exploring the Asian Art Museum’s new iTunes U site, visit:

For an excellent tutorial on how to use iTunes U, see:


♦  Museum Exhibitions on Asia

⇒  Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) - Heroes and Villains: The Battle for Good in India`s Comics

Dates: Through February 7, 2010

Location: 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036; exhibition shown at Japanese Pavilion
Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday 12 to 8 pm; Friday 12 to 9 pm; Wednesday closed
Admission: Adults $12; seniors (62+) and students $8; children 17 and under free
Education coordinator: Alicia Vogl Saenz, 323-857-6512

Examines the legacy of India’s divine heroes and heroines in contemporary South Asian culture through a selection of vintage Indian and American comics, and contemporary pencil-and-ink-drawn character explorations by Indian artists from the Liquid Comics series Ramayan and Devi.

⇒  Bowers Museum - Art of Adornment: Tribal Beauty

Dates: Through February 12, 2010

Location: 2002 North Main St., Santa Ana, CA 92706
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm; open late the fourth Thursday of every month until 8:00 pm
Admission: Adults $12; seniors (62+), students and children (6-17) $9; children under 6 free
Education coordinator: Linda Kahn, 714-567-3679

Features 70 rare and spectacular treasures that focus on the tribal aesthetic of body adornment from indigenous peoples around the world. The primary areas featured in the exhibition include the Pacific Islands, Africa, China, Southeast Asia and the Americas.

⇒  Pacific Asia Museum - Sketches of China: Works on Paper by Hyunsook Cho

Dates: Through February 17, 2010

Location: 46 North Los Robles Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101
Hours: Wednesday to Sunday, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Admission: Adults $7; students/seniors $5; free every 4th Friday of the month
Education coordinator: Amelia Chapman, 626-449-2742, ext.19

Sketches of China presents the artist`s re-interpretation of traditional Chinese ink painting in different media - watercolor, gouache, graphite pencil and dried leaves Cho collected in China.

⇒  JACCC - 12th Annual Shikishi Exhibition

Dates: Through February 28, 2010

Location: Japanese American Cultural and Community Center (JACCC), George J. Doizaki Gallery, 244 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, CA 90012
Hours: Tuesday to Friday, 12:00 to 5:00 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 11:00 am to 4 pm
Admission: Free

The JACCC welcomes the Year of the Tiger with its 12th Annual Shikishi Exhibition, featuring over a hunderd original shikshi designed and transformed by local and international artists, dignitaries and community members.

♦  Teachers on Asia

Teachers of all levels and subjects are invited to join our "Asia in My Classroom" web forum. To become a registered user (enabling you to post to the board), please e-mail us your request along with your name, school, and the grades and subjects you teach. What teachers have been talking about:

⇒  On Asian influence in the Spanish classroom: "[The] Day of the Dead... is celebrated differently throughout Latin America. In some regions of Latin America altars are created for deceased loved ones. My Spanish classes` assignment was to do a sort of altar, more like a memory box for a relative that has passed away. Several of my native Spanish speaker students remembered Asian relatives. One of my Peruvian students honored his Japonese great grandfather and another student of Cuban descent made an altar for her Chinese grandmother. She went on to explain why her grandmother had fled China, which was for political reasons in the start of the 20th century. This was a great link for me to [bring up a lecture I had attended by Lisa See, author of Shanghai Girls.] She discussed her Chinese ancestors` migration to California and their struggles once they were here. I wondered if they were similarly welcomed in Cuba or even in other parts of the United States and Latin America. This would be a good topic to address in my Spanish classes. Her story was fascinating, especially finding out she had Chinese roots when she looks nothing like you would expect an Asian person to look like. Both my students have some Asian features, but Lisa See did not. Makes me wonder where all my ancestors are from. Who`s to say I don`t have any Asian background? hmm..."

- Diana Muñoz, Redondo Beach Union High School

⇒  On discovering the Asian galleries at LACMA: "I recently went to LACMA on a Target Holiday Monday (its free). [Remaining Target Holiday Mondays for 2010: February 15, Presidents Day, May 31, Memorial Day, July 17, Target National Free Arts Day and September 6, Labor Day]  I had never been to the Pavilion for Japanese Art or the Korean Pavillion, which I never knew was there. I really enjoyed both, although they were vastly different. To add to the admosphere there was music on every floor, on these special Target days at the museum. I really enjoyed the minatures on the ground floor. I once took a Chinese painting class in college, and I was amazed at the similarities in those paintings and the ones I studied. The following lines and the sense of low-tone color. In the Korean gallery I enjoyed the religious sculpture and clothes (especially the bridal gown)."

- Darlene Torres, Sierra Vista High School

⇒  On using the film Please Vote for Me: "I have used [Please Vote for Me in my US Government / Comparative Government class] as a case-study introduction to the study of election campaigns, the culture of elections, the democratic process and the role played by the ‘human’ element in a democratic society. You might want to go beyond the obvious election issue here and explore other issues particular to China, such as the `One Child Policy.` ...There are several lesson guides and plans on the web which I have mined for ideas to use with my students. Here are the ones I consider the best:PBS Lesson Guide, Teacher`s Domain Lesson Guide and Video Question Handout."

- Stan Bartosiak, Glendale High School

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