The Guqin Course (Guqin: a Chinese musical instrument of the zither family) is a key aspect of the Chinese traditional cultural program in the Secondary School of Shanghai HD Bilingual School, introduced in the spring of 2018. This aims to extending cultural learning, introduce high-quality resources from Chinese society and take advantage of the interdisciplinary teaching methods of HD Schools.
The course is comprised of four sections: cultural lessons, lectures, study tours, and achievement presentations. It lasts six weeks in total with four weeks of cultural lessons and lectures, one week of study tours and another week of achievement presentation.
Cultural lessons are the core of this course. The cultural knowledge on Guqin is interspersed and incorporated into the widely read traditional literature. The concepts embedded in the Guqin are related to topics connected with modern life, encouraging students’ enthusiasm and profound thinking about traditional Chinese culture and the Guqin.
Our school is honored to have Zhu Huipeng, a renowned Guqin player, as our lecturer to give students a vivid learning experience. Our students had their first up-close experience with the Guqin. Lectures are an excellent supplement to cultural lessons and open doors for students to truly appreciate the Guqin.
When the cultural lessons and lectures are finished, the course group and its advisers take the students on a journey through the Guqin’s historical development. The journey starts in the canal towns in southern China which has a rich heritage of Guqin culture and then winds northward to the central plain of China which has long been the cradle of Chinese civilization. In Zhuo Qin (a sophisticated technique adopted for making a Guqin) and Silk String workshops, students learn how a Guqin is made from a chunk of wood and are given an opportunity to appreciat the origin and evolution of Guqin culture.