The Differences between Popular Sports in China and America

IMG_0043[1]Generally, the popular sports that Chinese teens play are different from Americans.

The main sports that Chinese teens play at schools are badminton, table tennis, rope skipping, and basketball. In the U.S.A. teens also play basketball, while also playing football, soccer, volleyball, baseball, kickball, and tennis.

Chinese middle school is from seventh to ninth grade, and the Chinese students take their physical education (P.E.) exams in the ninth grade. This exam is like the FitnessGram here, but they have different items, such as long-distance running, standing long jump, rope skipping, and shot-put. This exam is very important for Chinese middle-schoolers because it is one of the cumulative entrance examinations for the best high schools. If students score poorly on the physical examinations, it will lower their academic grades, and the students are not be able to attend the prestigious high schools, which could affect their livelihood.

My favorite sport is badminton. I used to play it weekly, and I was good at it. But since badminton is not really a popular sport in America, I haven’t practiced for a long time.

I have just learned how to play kickball last week. At first, I did not want to try because the rules sounded complicated, and I was afraid of making mistakes, but Sergeant Poynter told me that I would never learn how to do something unless I tried it. So eventually, I tried. I liked it. I found out kickball was so enjoyable because it is not a serious sport, and it is played for entertainment. So now it is one of my favorite sports.

Are You Ready for Finals?

Finals are coming soon. Are you ready for it? Here is some advice that might help.

  • Have clear plans for what and when you will review.
  • Stay away from distractions: such as cell phones and televisions.
  • Pay attention to your instructors in class, especially in the following review week.
  • Recall the past mistakes you’ve made in your assignments or quizzes.
  • Practice problems more often, so you will be proficient.
  • Figure out what is confusing you by consulting with others.
  • Make sure you have a goodnight sleep to stay energetic.
  • Be confident about yourself.

I hope my suggestions help: Good skills and good luck!


SIB and DMD went to San Diego Zoo last Thursday during SBAC testing.

I saw one of my favorite animals, the koalas. They are from Australia. The zoo has a wonderful exhibit with lots of eucalyptuses for them to eat, climb, and live in. They are gray with big black noses on their sleepy faces and chubby and fluffy bodies, and those features make them look so cute.

It wasn’t the first time I saw koalas. But every time I see them, they are always sleeping. They usually sleep between 18-22 hours a day. I looked up the reason online after I went home. The explanation is that they sleep a lot to conserve energy as their diet requires a lot of energy to digest.

The experience at the zoo was awesome. I hope we have a chance to visit the zoo again.

Teens Dating in China

Teens dating is different in China than in America.

In general, teens in China are not allowed to date until they graduate from high schools. Parents and teachers in China discourage teens from dating because they think dating would distract teens from studying. Especially in high school; dating is rarely tolerated because of China’s college entrance examination is so excruciating deciding what college students will enroll and their possible future.

However, that doesn’t mean all teens don’t date in China. There are a few teens dating secretly. They try not to let their relationships to be known by their parents and teachers so that they would not be persuaded to break up. That’s what makes it so hard to date for Chinese teens. But a lot of their relationships are still sweet and intense anyway.

By the way, today is considered one of the Chinese Valentine’s days, because “May 20th” sounds like “I love you” in Chinese. All shall be well, and Jack shall have Jill.

Chinese Cram Schools

imagesOn weekends, most of teenagers like to hang out with friends, play sports, go shopping, go to the movies, etc. Chinese teenagers also like hanging out with friends and doing various fun activities with their friends, but many of them don’t have time to do so.

Cram school has been a trend in China for many years. Cram schools teach somethings harder than regular schools and certain types of problems that might be on tests. In order to improve children’s grades, many parents force their children to take cram classes every weekend.

I had taken cram classes since I was in first grade. In America, cram classes like SAT and ACT test-preps do not start until high school. Imagine starting in the first grade. I used to spend a whole day at cram schools because I had so many cram classes to take. Usually my cram classes were small, so the instructors really cared about everyone in the classes. But sometimes, it was a lengthy time to concentrate after taking several classes. I felt my eyelids getting heavier… and heavier…and I tried to keep my mind clear as best I could. But somehow once the bell rang and the cram classes were over, I was just not sleepy anymore.

However, it is undeniable that the cram schools did help a lot with my grades.

The Differences Between Chinese And American Homes

mmexport1462901347114-1China’s land mass is right after America’s in the world ranking, but China has a large population of more than thirteen hundred million, which is about four times larger than America’s. Even though China is the fourth country by total area in the world, it has a problem of land-resource shortage.

Almost all of the Chinese residences are high buildings or skyscrapers and with mansions that have more than six stories.

I used to live on the 11th floor in a 24-story building in China, so basically, I had to take the lift to the ground floor everyday. It took a long time to wait for the lifts when it was a weekday because many people had to work or went to schools in the morning, and the capacity of the lift is only 11 people. Sometimes we had no electricity, so the lifts didn’t work. Even though the problem would be dealt with within a few hours, a lot of people who were hurried to go out had to use the stairs and the emergency exit that only had candles for lighting. Some people would use flashlights to help others illuminate the way.

When I came to America, I found that I liked the residences here better because many are usually less than a 3-story building. Now, I only spend a few moments getting out of my residence. I like it more than my old Chinese residence because even though the building was bigger, the square footage of our living area was smaller.

However, I miss my country right now because I haven’t been back there for almost one year.

Linda Vista Multi-Cultural Parade

ParadeThe 31st annual Linda Vista Multi-Cultural Parade was held on Saturday, April 23, from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Its purpose was to promote cultural awareness and understanding within San Diego.

Many Kearny JROTC cadets who attended the parade had come to school by 9:00 a.m. on Saturday. After about 1 hour of marching rehearsal, they started marching down the street. While they were marching, many people on the wayside cheered for them with enthusiasm. During the parade and throughout the day, attendees were able to enjoy a fun and exciting fair.

Amazingly, it took about 2 hours to march there and walk all the way back to Kearny. However, everyone did a great job, and I was really proud of attending the JROTC parade.


Chopsticks are just two small sticks, but some people can use them to eat all kinds of food. Do you think that is incredible? The picture at the top right corner shows you how to use chopsticks.

Most of Chinese people use chopsticks while American people use spoons, forks and knives.

When I was little, I thought chopsticks were hard to use. I used to use spoons until I went to elementary school. My mom said that it was unusual that as a Chinese I could not use chopsticks. So she started making me use chopsticks from then on.

My mom told me that the way to hold chopsticks was basically like the way to hold a pencil. But I could not even use a pencil properly when I was in first grade, not to mention a pair of chopsticks. That meant I had to hold two pencils simultaneously. Traditional Asian food is usually cut into tiny pieces so it would cook faster, but that also makes it hard to clip or grasp those small food pieces using chopsticks.

After a long time of practice, I finally found out how to use chopsticks. It is undeniable that chopsticks are the best eating utensils for most of Asian food like noodles, dumplings, wontons, sushi, sashimi, and even some American foods. Basically you can use chopsticks to eat all kinds of Asian foods, except soup and porridge.

But I have to say that I can hardly use forks and knives at the same time. I feel belabored when I try to cut the food that is too big in size. Fortunately schools here provide spoons for meals. Since I have been using spoons since I was a little kid, I feel comfortable eating with them at school.

I hope I can figure out how to feel comfortable using forks and knives one day. I want to learn to use all these main world eating utensils: Chinese and American. That sounds skillful, doesn’t it?

The Chinese Zodiac Story

The Chinese Zodiac

Chinese Zodiac

The Chinese zodiac, also known as Sheng Xiao, is based on a twelve-year cycle. Each cycle year is represented by an animal. These animals are Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and the Pig.

And there are many myths of these animals.
Here is one. Long-long ago, the Jade Emperor decided to pick from all the animals, and he chose the first twelve animals to appear at his birthday banquet. These first 12 are known as the Chinese Zodiac Animals.

The story goes that the Cat and Rat were best friends at that time. Cat liked sleeping, but it wanted to be picked, so it asked Rat to wake it up early. On the day of the banquet, Rat woke up early in the morning and left for the banquet, but it forgot to wake Cat up. Rat saw Ox on the way. Since Ox was much faster than Rat, Rat jumped on its back secretly. When Ox was almost there, Rat jumped down and got to the terminal point first. So Ox was second. Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig came to the banquet one after one and were the next ten. Cat finally woke up and came, but unfortunately, it was the thirteenth. So Cat couldn’t be included in the Chinese zodiac and thus began the antipathy between cats and rats.

The Difference Between Chinese and American Schools

My Middle School in China

I am an emigrant student from China. I attended schools in China until last year. Schools there are very different from the schools in America.

Chinese high schools last for three years while American ones last for four years. Also, Chinese high school students must lodge on their high school campus on the weekdays, but are allowed to go home on the weekends.

My Chinese middle school started at 7:20 and ended at 5:20 while Kearny starts at 8:40 and ends at 3:30. My classes there, for each period, lasted for 45 minutes while here they last for 90 minutes. The break between classes lasts for ten minutes there. Students in middle school China don’t stay at school during lunch; they go home, eat, and take a nap, then go back to school in the afternoon.

In China, students mostly have all their subjects in the same classroom with the same classmates. However, instead of having same daily scheduled subjects, the same classes every day, they have different schedules for different subjects Monday through Friday.

I still remember the classes I took in eighth grade: Chinese, math, English, physics, political science, geography, biology, PE, computer science, music, and art.

As I reminisce about student life, I see differences in teenage lives.  There are lots of things that Chinese students are not allowed to do until they graduate from high schools. For example, they are not allowed to wear any makeup or jewelry; they are not allowed to wear high heels; they are not allowed to dye or perm their hair, and boys are not allowed to have long hair. In my Chinese middle school, girls were not even allowed to put their hair down.

Also, dating is strongly discouraged among young adults. Generally, teachers and guardians in China think that dating is bad for teens because dating distracts teens from studying, and they are afraid of teens doing something that they can’t take responsibility for.

Anyway, people were so nice and friendly in my Chinese schools, and I cherish the memory of the days there.

The Importance of Sleep

Sleep plays an important role in your physical health. For example, sleep is involved in healing and repair of your heart and blood vessels.  During sleep, important body functions and brain activity occur. Teens need about 8 to 10 hours of sleep each night to function best. Lack of sleep can make it hard to get along with your family and friends, limit your ability to learn, hurt your scores on school exams, on the court or on the field, and you may even forget important information like names, numbers, your homework or a date with a special person in your life. You can look bad, you may feel moody, and you perform poorly.

Kearny starts school at 8:45 in the morning while most of high schools in San Diego start school at approximately 7:30. Kearny’s schedule has been changed to nearly match with a teens’ biological clock in order to help them get a sufficient amount of sleep. It is obvious that teens do better if they start school later; it is easier to listen, learn, concentrate, and solve problems in class, do well on a test, and play sports without stumbling.

If you have trouble sleeping, here’s some advice:

  1. Calming Your Mind
  2. Relaxing Your Body
  3. Eating and Drinking Your Way to Better Sleep