Needham, MA. January 4, 2011. Needham. Close to 400 Broadmeadow elementary school will participate in a Chinese Cultural celebration lead by award-winning teacher and professional dancer, Chiao Bin Huang of Carlisle. The dynamic program for kindergarteners up to third graders enriches social studies, geography and physical education through a series of workshops in January. It culminates on February 2 with a hands-on, student-performed Chinese New Year performance.

By engaging students directly in Asian customs, the Chinese Cultural Celebration explores similarities and differences between Asian and other cultures. Huang uses kinesthetic, music, drama, discussion and other mind/body experiences to teach students about the Chinese New Year and common Asian practices.

Hands-On Workshops and Performance Immerse Students in Asian Culture
Through collaboration with Broadmeadow’’s second grade teachers, Huang will conduct four, 30-minute workshops in each of the four second grade classrooms on January 5, 12, 19 and 26 from 12:30 to 2:30pm. One classroom will learn the lion and gold ring dance; a second, traditional ribbon dancing; and a third, martial arts. The fourth classroom will perform a play about the Chinese New Year. All second graders will learn to sing a song in Mandarin.

The lessons taught during the workshops will come together in a 45-minute Chinese New Year Celebration performed by second graders for kindergarteners and first and third graders on February 2 at 1:30pm. The grand finale is an audience sing-along of a Chinese New Year tune sung in Mandarin and using hand gestures.

NEF Grants Support Fine Arts and Cultural Awareness
Funded by a grant from the Needham Education Foundation (NEF), Huang’s fine arts and cultural awareness program complements two previous NEF grants awarded to Broadmeadow. The first, in 2004, funded “diversity book bags” containing multicultural books, games and music. A 2006 grant brought content from China’s Silk Road to fourth graders.

About the Artist, Chiao Bin Huang
Chiao Bin Huang is a professional dancer, choreographer and fine artist with over 20 years of experiences teaching dance, paper arts and Chinese in schools, theaters and professional venues throughout Massachusetts. Her Chinese New Year Celebration for the town of Carlisle earned the Gold Star Project award from the Massachusetts Cultural Council in 2006. She is a graduate of the dance department at the Chinese Cultural University in Taiwan and holds a Masters of Arts in Theater Education from Emerson College. Huang has performed with Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road project residency as a Chinese paper-cutting artist and dancer.

About the Needham Education Foundation
The NEF is an independent, community-based, not-for-profit organization that raises funds for the enrichment of public school children in Needham, Massachusetts. Among its most popular fundraising programs are the annual Spelling Bee, teacher recognition cards and the year-end appeal.

The NEF mission is to encourage innovation and excellence by supporting educational programs that are outside normal public funding. It achieves its mission by managing a permanent fund to implement the programs it supports. For more information about the NEF, please visit www.nefneedham.org.

Contacts:
Broadmeadow School
Marilyn Moy
MMOY@partners.org
Ph: 617-548-1651 (day); 781-449-4717 (evening)

NEF
Karen Dasey
kdasey@comcast.net
Ph: 781-455-8190