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What was trending a thousand years ago during the Song Dynasty

01 Dec 2021


"Chinese culture evolved through thousands of years and reached its peak during the Song Dynasty.

by Tschen Yin Koh

an eminent Chinese scholar"





It was early winter when the 2nd The Song Dynasty Exhibition opened at Huili School Hangzhou, a chance for our grade 7 pupils to demonstrate what they learned at their Chinese Social Studies lessons. Not only did they follow the glorious tradition of the exhibition last year by restoring fancy restaurants, small inns, Chinese traditional medicine shops, and Zhao Taicheng’s Clinic, they also added musical elements such as Pipa (Chinese lute) and Guzheng (a 21- or 25- plucked stringed instrument) and arranged interactive activities like playing pitch pot, Chuiwan (similar like playing golf) and tea tasting.





Chinese Social Studies at Huili is under constant evolvement. Learning the history and geography of China and the world opens a door for our pupils to understand and shape their surroundings and prepares them to grow into qualified global citizens with a positive role in this ever-changing world. Therefore, CSS as a lesson is closely intertwined with other subjects. CSS teaches Huili pupils to master key learning skills through great themes based on the national compulsory education curriculum.




This Song Dynasty Exhibition is an in-depth explorative study based on our theme of The History of The Song Dynasty. Learning the history through Along the River During Qingming Festival, we analysed the changes that occurred for the capital city Kaifeng during the Tang and Song dynasties, which allows us to see what a highly prosperous period the Song Dynasty was. Such a comprehensive and inquisitive style has sparked the learning enthusiasm of our pupils.



We were also excited to invite parents to participate in this exhibition. Below are some comments:

I feel honoured to attend the exhibition at Huii School Hangzhou. It allowed me to traverse across a thousand years into the Song Dynasty, where I can see how their daily life was by tasting tea, drinking, burning incense, appreciating flowers, playing Guqin and Chinese chess. The exhibition offers a grand view into that specific period, an opportunity for me to experience our ancestors’ elegant lifestyle and appreciate their balanced attitude toward life. It was indeed a wonderfully prepared exhibition that held many surprises. I felt that this was a window for me to forget reality, slow down and relax. It truly was how people in that dynasty pursue their lives and cultivate their state of mind.

The painting scroll takes one to a thousand years ago. Such a splendid activity gives warmth to the history and allows spectators to experience the history and culture of the Song Dynasty. It is a wonderful chance for our children to learn the history extensively and appreciate the charm of the ancient civilisation. What is more rewarding is that it introduces history into our mundane life, and a classical type of elegance has been included into the course.
Parent of Walter Lai from 7E 


It was a privilege to attend this years’ fantastic The Song Dynasty Exhibition hosted by the grade 7 team. I was also impressed by how intelligent the pupils and teachers are. From pupil tour guides to “venders” at every shop, their exhaustive demonstration of the painting Along the River During the Qingming Festival brought me into the Northern Song Dynasty. I learned a vintage craft of making scented candles and understood more about the Shiqian inn, tea houses, and the currency system at that time. I sincerely appreciate the elaborate creations of Huili pupils and hope they can work even harder to continue living up to the teachers’ expectations. I also want to thank the school and teachers for granting parents a chance to learn more about the school.

-Parent of Wes Ye from 7A

What an interesting idea it was to have children simulate the painting to showcase the hustle and bustle of the Song Dynasty. It was so entertaining that I had a big smile on my face the whole time. They taught me so much that it felt like I was the one having a history lesson.

Grace, the tour guide for 7A, was funny, passionate, and generous. She did a great job.

Parent of Simon Zhang from 7D

CSS at Huili also focuses on logical and critical thinking. We encourage pupils to learn how to analyse and explain, understand and communicate, and question and appreciate. Compared with the highest accolade is given to the Song Dynasty by Tschen Yin Koh, Qin Mu, a historian, holds an opposite opinion. He thinks that the Song Dynasty was weak outside and impoverished inside. Although the Song Dynasty Exhibition has lowered the curtain, the exploration into the dynasty is far from the end. In the following weeks, we will combine the different opinions of historians and debate the topic. We cannot wait to see our pupils exchange their ideas.