Down the Rabbit Hole: A Student’s Testimonial
Omeida Chinese Academy is the perfect place for you to learn Chinese and culture with one of the best teachers in Yangshuo! It is the first and only Chinese language school located in Yangshuo, Guilin, China. It has been developed by experienced teachers since 2002, who are dedicated to helping students acquire new knowledge about this amazing country within a safe environment.
Learn Chinese During Vacation
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many students have not been able to enter China to study Chinese. Nevertheless, our school was packed this summer with students who came from different cities in China. If you’re curious about how a day in the life of an Omeida student looks like then keep on reading!
One of our students from this year’s summer season didn’t really know what to expect before coming to Yangshuo. However, he expressed that he was pleasantly surprised with his stay at Omeida and recommends it to anyone who wants to delve deeper into the Chinese language and culture in a safe and supportive environment.
“One of the best rabbit holes I’ve ever explored.”– Past Omeida student
The student describes his whole journey as “one of the best rabbit holes I’ve ever explored.” He further explains that he has lived in China for approximately two years, and during this time he learned from tutors, movies, TV-shows, language apps, and sometimes eavesdropping on conversations to pick-up a bit of Chinese. He gained a bit of understanding, but wasn’t fluent. After two years of trying and searching, he came across an advertisement for Omeida while reading a WeChat article. He clicked the link and “I went down the rabbit hole”. After he had researched about Omeida, he thought “this is too good to be true, but it’s still worth pursuing”. He contacted Omeida and not long after his journey and relationship with us and our family of students began.
The enrollment process is simple and efficient. First, we will ask you if you’ve learned Chinese previously, about your goals and your time commitment. Next, we will schedule a placement test for the student(s) that will be conducted online via Skype. After the test, we will ask the student(s) to decide which program you will attend; Standard Course (15 lessons a week) or Intensive Course (30 lessons a week). Finally, we will finalize the arrangements for the student(s) arrival and payment. If you need a car to pick you up from the airport or the train station, then please notify us. According to the student “these are notable points as all businesses do not provide them”.
In regards to course options, “my experience and opinion is that both options are good, especially together”. However, do keep in mind that the Intensive course will take up a lot of time as you need to attend classes both in the morning and afternoon. The student initially chose the Intensive Course, but discovered that he wasn’t “able to process what I learned in time to apply it to the next lesson. This could be because my Chinese foundation was insufficient and/or too many other external commitments”.
Student Life at Omeida
As for the actual school, Omeida Chinese Academy is exactly what you see in the videos: open, student centered and accommodating. Our school has free access to WiFi, a lounge area, a refrigerator, coffee, tea and mugs, restrooms with Western and squatting style toilets, fitness room, rooftop access with furniture and study rooms, etc. Probably the best feature according to the student is the 24 hour access to the school building. Another small yet interestingly relaxing thing at Omeida is that instead of using bells to indicate the start and end of class, we play classical music. He says “it’s a different touch and quite nice” and “it further differentiates Omeida from others”.
Here at Omeida we try to keep the number of students in a classroom as low as possible (2-4 students). We try our best to ensure that everybody gets a chance to speak Chinese. Furthermore, we offer extra curricular activities to help our student(s) further develop their linguistic skills by introducing the student to a language partner (language exchange between Chinese and English). Also, we teach Culture Class every Wednesday and partake in the Thursday Social Nights. We hike to beautiful places for our Saturday Activity, host monthly dinners, interact with locals and volunteer at Omeida English College.
Speaking of volunteering, it’s an after school program in which the volunteers have conversations in English with the students from the English Academy. Do keep in mind that if you prefer an all-Chinese speaking environment, then this volunteering program might not help you with that. However, it is an opportunity to help someone, make a connection and learn about Chinese culture. Most importantly, it can help to offset some of your cost, such as meals and accommodation. Please let us know if you’re interested in joining our Volunteering Program. You will volunteer from 1 to 2 hours every day from Monday to Friday between 5 and 6 pm. The student thinks “although it was enjoyable having conversations with English learners, it was, at times, in conflict with other interests”.
The student describes the accommodation “clean, adequate, affordable, secure and close to the academy”. You can choose between a single or a shared room. The student chose to share a room hoping to benefit from having a roommate. A roommate can be a godsend for your sanity and language development. He and his roommate were “separated by several generations, but we didn’t have any problem, just not much to converse about”. Omeida also has a canteen not too far from the school. An option to consider if you want meals on time and if you want to talk with Chinese people during mealtime.
The student stayed for a month at Omeida. Although he started at a beginner level, he soon built a solid foundation. He made improvements in pronunciation, grammar and speaking. In the future he intends to continue his studies online with Omeida. This might be an excellent option for you if you want to learn Chinese in the comfort of your home. For more information check out our Online Chinese Course page.
In conclusion, the student feels that coming to Yangshuo wasn’t a choice, but a chance and a necessity. Omeida Chinese Language Academy is a good choice for the curious adventurer and student. He strongly recommends everybody else to come down to Yangshuo and study Chinese at Omeida. You can explore the beautiful landscape that surrounds it at the same time. The staff and teaching faculty at Omeida work hard to make your stay amazing and unforgettable. If there’s anything you want to know more about please feel free to contact us.
Not only him but all of our students say that when it’s time to leave, it’s likely that the school, students, locals and the enchanting, picturesque Yangshuo and your experiences will have you wanting to return. “You won’t be disappointed with your choice.” Read more about things to do in Yangshuo!
This article has been edited to fit the length and the ease of reading.