Over spring break, students and faculty chaperones traveled to Shanghai to visit Peddie's sister school, EFZ. Each student will enjoy a homestay experience with a fellow EFZ student, participate in a host of group activities and work on an independent project in conjunction with an EFZ student partner.
While EFZ has provided me with a unique perspective towards high school education in China, the homestay portions of my trip definitely overshadow the EFZ part of it. My project partner, Tina, and my homestay volunteer, James, have been not only extremely friendly and fun to be around, but also have shown me night life in Shanghai and the plethora of different things to do in such a vast city.
James and Tina first took me to areas which would help me with my project centered on fitness and active life in Shanghai. In the park adjacent to People’s Square there were large groups of middle aged women all practicing what was a form of Tai-qi. The whole event was a very public experience with people being encouraged to join and participate in their form of fitness. People’s Square and the neighboring Nanjing road are in my opinion the Times Square and Broadway of Shanghai respectively. They are full of people and boast beautiful lights which truly present Shanghai as a modern city. However, in America, I feel I would never see large groups of people just doing for example push ups in the middle of Times Square. Therefore, seeing this aspect of Chinese culture juxtaposed itself with the American culture which I had become accustomed to.