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Tom Connor, director of Leland and Gray’s “Journey East,” announced today that an information session for students interested in participating in the 2014 Asian Studies Academy and month-long performance tour of China will be held in the Music Room at Leland and Gray from 6:30 to 8:00 P.M. on Thursday, January 24. Interested students and their parents are invited and encouraged to attend. A second session, for those unable to attend on the 24th, will be held at the same time and place on Tuesday, the 29th.
The Journey East Program, initially funded by the Freeman Foundation and with major support from the University of Vermont’s award winning Asian Studies Outreach Program, was created at Leland and Gray in 2000. Over 200 students from host Leland and Gray and area schools including Brattleboro, Twin Valley, Burr and Burton, Green Mountain, The Compass School, Bellow Falls and others have participated. Over 40 students from the aforementioned schools have brought their energy and talents to the high school in previous years, enriching the program and their home schools and becoming valued members of the Journey East community.
Twenty-four students and three administrators from China spent a week in an intensive language and culture summer camp at Leland and Gray. The students, ranging in age from 15 to 17, are part of Leland and Gray’s international program with Yuhang and Yunhe, two “sister-schools” in Zhejiang Province, China.
The students stayed with 14 host families in the communities served by Leland and Gray and interacted on a daily basis with as many as 22 Leland and Gray middle and high school students. The program was designed to provide diverse opportunities for the students to spend time with their American peers, visit local cultural and historical sites, and receive daily English instruction with veteran ESL teacher, Bill Conley, of Dummerston, who was assisted by Vermont Teacher of the Year, Ms. Tong Chen, and Winhall artist, Mr. Paul Molinelli.
Townshend, VT May 2012
This show toured throughout China during this past month, and will be presented to the public on Saturday, May 5, in the Dutton Gym at Leland and Gray Union and Middle High School at 7:30 P.M.
The show, created by directors Ron Kelley, long-time music teacher at the school, Jennifer Connor, 21st Century Grant Coordinator in the WCSU, and 18 students from Leland and Gray, Brattleboro Union High School and Green Mountain High School, was enthusiastically received by audiences ranging from kindergarteners and primary school students in special Mongolian schools in Inner Mongolia to middle school, college and university students in Chongqing and Sichuan Province in southwest China and in Shandong Province in eastern China.
The performance, created especially for limited English-speaking audiences, was designed to appeal to young and old alike and features body percussion, juggling, song, dance, gymnastics, silent comedy routines, a Chinese fable with translation by senior Eric Ginter, mime and a lot of action.
The doors will open at 7:00 P.M. and the 7:30 performance will be preceded by a slide show of the group’s activities in China, and a special video of their final instrumental and dance collaborations with Chinese and Mongolian students at the Arts College of Inner Mongolia University.
A Q and A session with program participants will follow the show.
Admission is free!
March 23, 2012 Townshend, VT Since being accepted into the program in February of 2011, 18 high school students from host Leland and Gray and area schools have been gearing up to depart for a month-long performance tour of China as a part of “Journey East: Leland and Gray’s Sino-American Academy and Arts Exchange.” Beginning this past January, the 18 students, ranging in age from 14 to 17, have been enrolled in China-related courses at Leland and Gray in preparation for their month-long performance /study tour of China.
Initiated at Leland and Gray in 2000, the Journey East Program has provided over 200 high school students with the opportunity to study China in depth and to spend an unforgettable month experiencing China firsthand. The program has hosted students from area schools such as Leland and Gray, Brattleboro, Bellows Falls, Green Mountain, The Compass School, Twin Valley and Burr and Burton.
Leland and Gray’s "Journey East: Asian Studies Academy and Sino-American Arts Exchange" is open to students entering grades 9-12 in September of 2011. Students and parents need to be aware of the fact that there is an expense involved in this program, that there are required evening sessions, and that the group spends a month in China touring and performing in such cities as Beijing, Chongqing, Qufu of Shandong Province, and Hohhot, Inner Mongolia. The school day of the Journey East participant may vary widely from that of other high school students. The application, interview, and audition process begins in February of 2011 for the semester-long program that commences in January of 2012. Students will be notified of their acceptance by May 15, 2011. In Journey East, students participate in the following courses.
Chinese Cultural Studies
Social Studies credit
Focus on Chinese history, geography, philosophy, literature and culture. Extensive use is made of feature-length Chinese movies and documentaries on important aspects of China today. Participants are required to read five books, three of which are required and two of their own choice. The required books include The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston, Falling Leaves by Adeline Yen Mah, and Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie.
Students work with teachers to create an original music/theater/movement piece to perform for thousands of Chinese students and teachers during a month-long tour of China. After returning from China in late April, students devote workshop time to conduct individual research on a major project, which they present to the class and invited guests in lieu of a final exam.
Each JE student is required to take Chorus for ½ credit. Many students choose to take Band as well, for which they are awarded an additional ½ credit. See p. 21 for course descriptions.
Each JE student is required to take Chinese Language for 1 full credit.
The Journey East Program was created at Leland and Gray in 2000 and over 200 students from host Leland and Gray and area schools including Brattleboro, Twin Valley, Burr and Burton, Green Mountain, The Compass School, Bellow Falls and others have participated. Nearly 40 students from the aforementioned schools have brought their energy and talents to the high school in previous years, enriching the program and their home schools and becoming valued members of the Journey East community. Seven slots have been reserved in the 2012 program for qualified students from out of the Leland and Gray Union District.
For the duration of a semester in Journey East, participating students in grades 9-12 are engaged in the study of Chinese history, philosophy, geography, politics, literature and film. Additionally, all students are enrolled in classes in Leland and Gray’s AP-certified Chinese language program. All participants are required to take Chorus and many study instrumental music, as well.
Students also work with Journey East teachers in a course entitled “Production Workshop,” in which they create and produce a music/theater/dance/movement piece that is presented to many thousands of Chinese students and teachers during a month-long study/performance tour of China in March and April.
After traveling and studying in Beijing, Chongqing, Sichuan, and Shandong Province, the last several days in China are spent collaborating in music, dance and art workshops with students and teachers at The Arts College of Inner Mongolia University in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia. Working together, these students teach and learn songs and dances from each other’s culture. Those pieces then become part of a final joint performance program.
Once home, students serve as resources in other Vermont schools where they perform and share their experiences and insights into Chinese culture, visiting classrooms throughout Windham County. Each student participant makes presentations to students in the elementary school that he/she attended. Additionally, each student chooses a focus are to study in greater depth and delivers a presentation on that subject to their peers, parents and community members as a final exhibition in June, a capstone project in lieu of a final exam.
Contact Tom Connor at Leland and Gray for more information.