Eight students and two teachers from Luoyang No. 1 Senior High School in the Henan province of China joined the afternoon orchestra classes at Crosswinds Arts and Science School today, October 16. Crosswinds’ orchestra teacher, Todd Weinhold, greeted the delegation in Mandarin and Crosswinds students bridged language barriers by playing several instrumental pieces for the visitors.
Woodbury Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens welcomed the China delegation on behalf of the city of Woodbury and presented gifts. The Chinese students gave traditional good luck gifts to the city of Woodbury and Crosswinds’ students. Mayor Stephens gave a brief civics lesson and answered questions from the students who were interested in what she studied in college. The Chinese students explained that they live in residence halls and attend school from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The delegation from China spent the day at Crosswinds taking part in art classes where they designed and constructed 3-D models of rooms, took part in orchestra classes, toured the energy award-winning school building and garden and mingled with Crosswinds students and teachers.
Luoyang No. 1 Senior High School is the sister school to Perpich Arts High School, part of Perpich Center for Arts Education, which manages Crosswinds. The purpose of the annual China exchange program is for Minnesota and Chinese students to learn about each others’ cultures and make meaningful and lasting cultural connections. Students from Perpich will visit China in the spring. Plans are under way to include Crosswinds in the Perpich China exchange program, now in its fourth year.
Perpich Center for Arts Education is a state agency serving all schools in Minnesota. Created in 1985 by the Minnesota state legislature, the agency seeks to advance K-12 education throughout the state by teaching in and through the arts. Perpich staff and faculty experts provide outreach, professional development, research, curriculum and standards development. Perpich also is home to a public arts education library and an innovative, two-year, statewide residential high school that serves as a living laboratory for creative development in the arts.