Confucius Institute in Sofia Held a Language Practice and Chinese Food Culture Experience Field Trip
On June 26, Mr. FEI Libin, a Chinese teacher at the Confucius Institute in Sofia, organized an offline field trip about Chinese food etiquette and culture for the students at his Chinese language class.
Since the beginning of the language class last year, all the lessons have been taught online, and some students even could not find opportunities to communicate face-to-face with the teacher and the other students. After more than a year of study, the students’ proficiency of Chinese language and the knowledge of Chinese culture have significantly improved, and they are eager to put the knowledge they have learned into practice and demonstrate the results in real life. In order to enhance the friendship between the teacher and the students and to promote Chinese culture as well, Mr. FEI put some effort into organizing an informal discussion on Chinese language and a small Chinese food etiquette and cultural experience field trip in a local Chinese restaurant.
At about 8 o'clock that evening, the students arrived as scheduled. Arakel Pehlivanyan, a student who has been to China several times, has done a lot of research on Chinese food. He said: "Chinese food is so rich, and each dish has its own character." He showed everyone pictures of the Chinese food he has ever eaten in China - hot pot, mutton skewers, braised sea cucumbers, etc. Biliana Isaeva and Vanya Slavova showed unbelievable amazement when they saw the photos of braised sea cucumbers. Arakel explained that sea cucumbers are not only delicious, but also very healthful and nutritious. Chinese people are very particular about nutrient-rich food and supplementing one form with another. After what Arakel shared, Biliana and Vanya, who have never been to China, said that they would study hard hoping to have the opportunity to go to China in the near future and experience more of Chinese culture.
During the field trip, Mr. FEI told the students about the eight major Chinese cuisines, the basic etiquette of Chinese food culture, the culture of chopsticks as well as the rules of paying bills. The students were in high spirits, which helped to make their level of exchange and interaction high and intense. Mr. FEI made full use of the opportunity by giving the students practical tasks on the spot: he asked the students to talk to the owner of the Chinese restaurant and learn how to make scrambled eggs with tomatoes and homemade tofu. Biliana and Vanya tried to communicate with the owner in Chinese with a slight Bulgarian accent, and through words and body language, they learned the basics of making these two home-cooked dishes. The students learned about the main ingredients, the seasonings and the preparation methods for Chinese homemade dishes. Mr. FEI seized the opportunity once again and further assigned the students a task of coking themselves at home: making a video clip of cooking, which should include the procedures like preparations, cooking, completion and so on. They are of course asked to explain in Chinese what and how they are doing with a purpose to practice their speaking skills.
Finally, the students waved goodbye to each other. This language practice and Chinese food culture experience field trip benefited the students very much and they are looking forward to next one.