Zhentao Xu
Voluntary Teaching in Daxi Primary School, Yunnan Province
During my second year in SJTU, I went to Daxi Primary School to provide voluntary education support. The school was built in the mountains of the remote area in Yunnan Province. And the students were all Yi people, which is one of the 55 racial minority groups in China. Most students would go back home after finishing the primary school study, and start working to support their families financially, except for only one or two students who would further attend middle school. During the one-month stay and communication with students, I realized the main reason preventing them from continuing the education was not only their families heavy economic burden, but more importantly, the unawareness about the significance of education. Therefore, apart from teaching academic knowledge, I also inspired them the importance of education by telling stories of well-known scientists and showing pictures of world-famous universities such as UC Berkeley. I aspire to increase the participation of a diverse population in higher education and improve their ways of life using technologie
Photo Selections

I asked the kids a mathematical question “how to divide a cake into seven parts with only three cuts”, they are enthusiastic in trying new things and eventually all kids went to the rostrum to try out their ideas.

I printed some paper with pattern on it before leaving from Shanghai to Yunnan. These patterns can be used to make paper artwork. They really enjoyed doing these artworks, since probably they have never played with these artwork in their life before that seems so common to me when I was a child.

This photo was taken before the voluntary-teaching group left the Daxi Primary School. (I was responsible for teaching the second-grade students in Daxi Primary School, and there was only 11 students in the second-grade class.) Due to the poor transportation and busy schedule, I haven't had a chance to go back and see these kids since then, but I really miss them and really hope to go back one day in the future.

Daxi Town, Yuxi City, Yunnan is a very beautiful place, but kids must start working at a very young age to support their family financially, but they still hold a very optimistic attitude towards life.