Working with children & adults to enhance the understanding of the Chinese language and culture.Confucius Institute, University of Kansas
Standard Chinese (also known as Mandarin) is the standard and most widely spoken dialect of the Chinese language. As such, Chinese is essential for Americans interested in doing business, vacationing, or studying in China. As Chinese business people, tourists, and scholars travel to the United States in growing numbers, Americans are also finding Chinese very useful at home.
The Confucius Institute of the University of Kansas offers several different language and culture classes for all ages. We offer non-credit classes at the KU Edwards Campus. We also provide distance learning Chinese language classes to elementary schools, middle schools, and high schools across Kansas during the academic year. Distance learning Chinese classes have also been extended to schools in Missouri, Ohio, Arkansas, and South Dakota as part of short-term and summer programs.
During the summer, CIKU offers children’s culture and language camps for young children. For the past six years, CIKU has also offered a STARTALK summer program for high school students, funded by the federal government as part of the National Strategic Languages Initiative (NSLI) program. We encourage you to read more about the programs we offer at the links above.
China is a top trading partner of the United States and a rapidly growing export market for American goods and services. China is an important export market for both Kansas and Missouri and a growing number of regional companies are trading with China or creating value with Chinese partners. Businesses engaging with China will need growing numbers of employees with training in business-related fields AND with skills in Chinese language and culture.
For Global Issues
In education, the arts, and other fields, collaboration between experts in the United States and China can stimulate creativity and enrich the cultural landscape for all. Pathogens, pollutants, and criminals do not respect national boundaries. Employers in the public health, environmental pollution, and law enforcement sectors, as well as agriculture, bioscience, and many other fields, will need professionals who can work with counterparts across the globe to find creative solutions for the world's common problems.
For Sense of Achievement
Foreign language study improves cognitive skills such as memory, attention span, problem solving, spatial abilities, and reading. Students with 4 or more years of foreign language study score higher on standardized tests such as the SAT and ACT. Chinese is the most widely spoken first language in the world, and knowledge of Chinese gives young Americans the ability to engage directly with the many Chinese speakers living both in China and around the world.
Foreign language study offers a window into other cultures and provides a bridge of understanding. Learning a foreign language allows us to see the world through a different lens. Language can help us appreciate the subtleties of other cultures and also see our own cultures in a new light.