Chinese students get Harmony tour

Updated: 2016-02-01 05:48

By MAY ZHOU in Houston(China Daily USA)

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Chinese students get Harmony tour

Students from Beijing Huijia Private School check out dissected animal hearts and learn from students of the Harmony School of Science about the structure and function of the heart on Jan 29 in Houston.MAY ZHOU / CHINA DAILY

A group of students from Beijing Huijia Private School watched students at Harmony School of Science in Houston dissect an animal heart, took a ride on a gyroscope to test their potential for being an astronaut, launched a hot air balloon and toured the school’s farm house all on the morning of Jan 29.

The guest and host students also worked together to create a piece of art work and ended the visit with a friendly basketball match.

The Chinese students had come to Houston through the Kobe Bryant China Fund, a program that collaborates with the China Soong Ching Ling Foundation, according to Jin Dunquan, vice-chairman of the foundation.

“There have been a lot of exchanges between China and the US, but we need to understand each other at a deeper level,” said Jin.

“As the Chinese saying goes: hearing a hundred times is not as good as seeing once,” he added. “We believe this kind of face-to-face meeting will cultivate long lasting friendships among the next generation.”

According to Jin, the students will also go to a Houston Rockets game, and then travel to Los Angeles to meet with basketball star Kobe Bryant and play games with local students there.

Soner Tarim, CEO of Harmony Public Schools, welcomed the visiting students and other guests to the school. According to Tarim, Harmony is the largest charter school system in Texas serving more than 30,000 students in 46 schools.

“This is a STEM school. I know you came to play sports. But if you are good at playing basketball, you must be good at science too,” Tarim joked with the students prior to their tour of the school’s science programs.

Nancy Li, president of US-China Peoples Friendship Association, helped to arrange the tour at Harmony. “I believe that in the future, more concrete collaboration between the Harmony school system and other Chinese middle and high schools is quite likely,” said Li.

Chinese consul in Houston Duan Fenghua, who went on the school tour with the students, said, “We know that sports had played a pioneering role in China-US relations normalization. Sports programs are important to the youth, I am sure the students will learn a lot from this trip.”