The time has come for us to greet our family, friends, and teachers, “Gong xi fa cai” and “Xin nian kuai le!” Everyone, it seemed, was so busy preparing for the Chinese New Year celebration which is one of the biggest and most awaited events of the year. Both students and teachers of Xavier School Nuvali worked round the clock to prepare for this event. Two teachers from the Beijing Chinese Language and Cultural College, Tan Shuo (Tanya) and Hao Zixia (Summer) came to the XSN campus to help the community prepare.
One of the things that Laoshi Tanya helped the students and teachers with was a Chinese lantern for Colorful Passions: A Chinese New Year Lantern Exhibit, a joint project of Makati Shangri-La Manila, Asian Dragon Magazine, and Chinatown TV. The exhibit features different lanterns made by students from Filipino-Chinese schools in Metro Manila and nearby Laguna. Xavier School Nuvali and Xavier School San Juan both made lanterns for this exhibit, which will run until February 12, 2016 at the Makati Shangri-La Manila hotel.
The lantern prepared by XSN was designed by Laoshi Tanya and teachers Mr. Philip Oning (Art teacher), Ms. Chesca Tinio (Art Club moderator), and assisted by Ms. Christine Cruz, (Computer teacher). Participant Janelle Hung (Gr. 7) says,
“This experience gave me an opportunity to share my talent and skills with other students from different levels. I was able to interact with those who have a passion for art, and we were able to help one another. We spent hours cutting, sketching, and painting to finish the given task. I can say that our hard work paid off because it just looked like the way we expected, and we were able to finish it in less than a week.”
Laoshi Tanya, an art teacher in Beijing, exposed the students to various Chinese art activities like paper-cutting, bead work, and painting. The works of the students are currently displayed in the lobby of the Henry Sy Primary Building in XSN.
While Laoshi Tanya tended to the development of the students art skills, Laoshi Summer took on the task of developing the students’ physical coordination through dance. She taught the students various dances, including two highlights of the Chinese New Year celebration on campus last February 5: the fan dance and the ribbon dance.
Both dances were participated in by high school volunteers. The fan dance opened the celebratory program and was performed by an all-female group while the ribbon dance, participated in by both male and female high school students, was the last dance right before the much-awaited dragon and lion dance. Both fan and ribbon dances elicited gasps of awe and resounding applause from the students, faculty, guests, and parents. In the three weeks that laoshi Summer trained the volunteers, the dancers were able to present lovely, graceful, and at the same time powerful dances that reminded one of the Chinese cultural roots from which the school sprung from.
The departure of the two teachers from Beijing saddened the community, but Laoshi Tanya and Laoshi Summer have both enriched the XSN community’s Chinese cultural side. On top of this, they have made an indelible mark on the lives of the students they taught, as evidenced by the tears shed by the students they closely worked with during their stay on campus.
Xavier School Nuvali welcomes the year of the Fire Monkey with high spirits and a brighter community.