Macheng Number 1 High School

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September 10th 2010
Published: May 7th 2012EDIT THIS ENTRY

Basketball CourtBasketball CourtBasketball Court

The basketball court underneath my apartment
I arrived in the small town of Macheng in September 2010. This is the second place in China I have lived in. I arrived there by train around 10pm with all my luggage. There was the head of the english department waiting for me on a motorbike. I was confused, where am i suppost to put all my lugguge? He got a taxi so everything was cool.

The next day after a arrived there i got sick. I got a fever. So i wasn't able to teach on the friday they wanted me to begin on. So I started in the Monday. Instantly once a started teaching the students attached themselves to me. They talked to me about there lives and what there going through. I joined in to there PE classes. Playing basketball, running, ping pong and I started a parkour training club at lunch for the students.

I worked there until the end of the first semester. I had to leave the school. It was too depressing. These kids had to be in class by 6:30am every morning. They finished class at 10:00pm. They don't home, they live in dorms behind the school gate. The students are
Basketball CourtBasketball CourtBasketball Court

Another shot of the court.
not allowed to leave the school property unless they have a pass (or there with me :P) Students would have to climb a tree over an 8 foot wall just to get out to use the internet (thats why I started the parkour club).

The most depressing thing of all was I got really close with one student in particular. His name is Qiu Huanling. He had a passion and love for basketball. He had the same fire in his heart for basketball that I had for badminton. I watched as this prison they call high school chained him to a desk. He couldn't do what he loved to do. He had dreams to join the CBA, he only wanted to play basketball.

This is just one example of whats goes on in these schools. My fience is from Guangxi province and her schooling was very similar. She told me before she went to high school she loved to play ping pong. She gave it up when she went to high school.

Working in the this school has opened my eyes. You get so close to the students and you get involved in there lives. It's a
Basketball CourtBasketball CourtBasketball Court

Students playing basketball during PE class.
truely amazing experience. Though it was a very depressing experience , i was also a very positive experience. I am very glad a had the honor to teach in this school.

The last thing a would like to mention is; Once I left this school, i got a call from the head master. He told me one of your students in grade 1 (13 years old) had committed suicide. He had jumped off of one of the teaching buildings. He couldn't take the pressure. Pressure from his parents, teachers, and peers. Sixteen hours a day constantly studying. he had enough, he couldn't do it. so the option for him was to end it all. THIS IS A NORMAL ACCURANCE IN CHINESE HIGH SCHOOLS.

Additional photos below
Photos: 29, Displayed: 24


Teaching BuildingTeaching Building
Teaching Building

This building is for the oldest students. Grade 3 (otherwise known as grade 12).
Grades 1 and 2 Teaching BuildingGrades 1 and 2 Teaching Building
Grades 1 and 2 Teaching Building

This is the teaching building for grade 1 and 2 students. This is where I spent my time teaching.
Football Field and GymnasiumFootball Field and Gymnasium
Football Field and Gymnasium

This is where all the students would gather for morning exercises and outdoor activities. In the gym is where they did there midterm and final examinations. The teachers (not students) where alowed to play basketball, badminton, and ping pong there.
Administration BuildingAdministration Building
Administration Building

This is where all the offices are. The head master and everyone else that works under him.

This garden in located behind the school. The students are not allowed in this area without being accompanied buy a parent or teacher. This garden leads toward all the apartments where all the teachers and teacher's families live.

This garden is behind the football field. Students usaully sit together and read or do homework here. It's very quite and relaxing here.

A statue in the garden behind the school.

These cats are owned by the families behind the school. Everytime I would walk home i would see these cats. I'm not sure what there eating. I think a tongue of some animal.

This is the path to my apartment. The basketball court is on the other side the wall on the right. I usually just jumped over the wall. I never walked all the way around.
Classroom 1Classroom 1
Classroom 1

These are the photos of all the students in class. Each class has around 65 - 80 students. I was responsible for teaching all of grades 1 and 2. I had over 3000 students in total.

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