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1 A to Z of CHINA An alphabet journey through China in words and pictures Kate Russell

2 Where is China? Maps A is for Art and Craft B is for Beijing C is for Cars D is for Dams and Dragons E is for Empire and Emperors F is for Forbidden City and farming G is for Great Wall and Gorges H is for Hutongs I is for Industry J is for Jade K is for Kung Fu L is for Language and Lotus M is for Markets and Maglev N is for Nanjing and New Year O is for 2008 Olympic Games P is for PRC, population, pagodas and pandas Q is for Qing dynasty R is for rice and recycling S is for Shanghai and silk T is for Tai Chi and tea U is for Umbrellas V is for vegetables W is for Wuhan and water melon X is for Xian Y is for Yangtze river Z is for Zai jian Acknowledgments A to Z of China contents

3 Where is China? China is the third largest country in the world (can you name the first and second?) This map is from World Atlas and shows where China is in Asia and in the world. Other maps and aerial photos can be seen on Google Maps, Maps of China and China PageWorld Atlas Google MapsMaps of ChinaChina Page

4 A is for Art and Craft The Chinese are very artistic and creative people. As well as some beautiful paintings, the many traditional crafts include calligraphy, pottery, silk embroidery, lacquer ware and jewellery making. Art and crafts are sold in the many markets. The plate shown here is very large and the four pictures are ink and pen drawings showing the Four Seasons.

5 B is for Beijing Beijing is the capital city of China. It is a large and very busy city with lots of people (about 12 million), cars and bicycles. In 2008 Beijing will host the Olympic games. This is inside The Forbidden City. Beijing used to be known as Peking. B is also for bamboo and bicycles which are both used a lot in China!

6 C is for cars There are lots of cars and other traffic in China. Many of the roads are very congested. Cars are now made in China, such as the Rover. C is also for chopsticks which the Chinese use to eat most of their meals with, and for chillies which are used a lot in their cooking. C is also for the large Chinese cities such as Chengdu and Chongqing.

7 D is for dam and dragons! The Three Gorges Dam is a huge dam being built on the River Yangtze at Sandouping. When finished it will be the worlds largest dam. It will reduce flooding, provide water for the large cities, generate electricity (HEP), and make navigation easier for ships on the river. The Chinese are very superstitious and the dragon is thought to be a friendly creature which protects people. Many buildings are decorated with dragons.

8 E is for empire and emperors China was an empire ruled by Emperors for about 4000 years. The emperors were members of Dynasties, like families, such as the Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644). The emperors lived in the Forbidden City in Beijing, shown in the top photo. The last emperor of China was Puyi (Qing Dynasty), who was forced to resign in 1912 when modern China was formed. The bottom photo shows the Dragons throne, which the emperor reigned from.

9 F is for Forbidden City, farming and factories The Forbidden City in Beijing is also known as the Imperial Palace. This is where the Emperors lived. There are 8700 rooms there. Ordinary people were not allowed to go there! There are many farms and farmers in China, growing fruit, rice, vegetables and raising animals. Many farms are on steep terraced hillsides. Many things are made in factories in China. Can you find something at home which was made in China?

10 G is for Great Wall and Three Gorges The Great Wall of China is over 4000 miles (6700km) long, crosses from east to west of China. It is 2500 years old in places and was built to protect the northern borders of the Chinese dynasties. This part of the wall is at Mutianyu. The Three Gorges is an area of spectacular scenery on the Yangtze river; the river flows in a series of three deep valleys, called Qutang, Wu and Xiling. When the Three Gorges Dam is complete, the water level will be much higher in the valleys.

11 H is for hutongs The hutongs are a series of small, narrow streets full of houses, shops, small businesses and some open spaces. These are the traditional living and working places of many people in Beijing; because the houses are small people spend a lot of their time working and playing out of doors. There are not many hutong left now and most people live in flats.

12 I is for Industry Made in China is increasingly found on labels of many things we use around the home – have a look tonight! China has become a very important country for making things. There are factories all round China; this is just a small electroplating one. Goods are sent all round the world, often in huge containers on ships such as these (seen through quite heavy rain!)

13 J is for Jade Jade is an ornamental stone, often green in colour. As a rock jade is found in many parts of China and is traditionally used for making decorative objects, jewellery. These pictures show the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, near Lijiang, is a very popular tourist destination, It is one of the most southerly glaciers in the northern hemisphere and has 13 peaks.

14 K is for Kung Fu Kung Fu is a type of Chinese martial art. Ancient Chinese martial arts were all about self defence, hunting and military training. They have also had a big impact on films, poetry and books.

15 L is for language and lotus Most Chinese people speak Mandarin Chinese, although there are many dialects. In Hong Kong and Guangzhou Cantonese is spoken. Mandarin a language of symbols and images. Pinyin is a westernised written form of Mandarin. The lotus plant is found in many parts of China growing in water; most parts of the lotus can be eaten and are served in many Chinese meals. It is a sacred plant of Budhists

16 M is for markets and Maglev The Chinese people seem to love markets for their shopping! These are found in streets in most cities, towns and even villages. Stalls sell food, sometimes live animals, clothes, household goods, and nearly everything else you can think of! Maglev is a high speed train (Magnetic Levitation) in Shanghai, which connects the centre with the airport. Trains travel at 430 km am hour.

17 N is for Nanjing and New Year Nanjing is a large and ancient city on the Yangtze river. The top photo shows the ancient city walls and the bottom shows Mingfa New River City, a new development by the river. Chinese New Year (Spring Festival) is celebrated in January or February; in 2008 it was February 7 th ; 2008 is the Year of the Rat. 2009 will be Year of the Ox. Ni hao is hello in Pinyin

18 O is for 2008 Olympic Games The Olympic Games are held every 4 years and in 2008 they will take place in Beijing from 8 th – 24 th August. This will be the 29 th modern games. The top photo shows the clock to countdown to the start if the games and the lower photos shows building work on the site for the Olympic village where athletes will stay.

19 P is for PRC, population, people, pagodas and pandas P is for Pagoda, a tired tower which are usually religious buildings. P is also for Panda, a symbol of China. The correct name for China is Peoples Republic of China (PRC). The population of China is 1.3 billion, which means 1,300, 000,000 people live there. This is about one fifth of the total population of the whole world.

20 Q is for Qing dynasty The Qing Dynasty, was the last ruling dynasty of China from 1644 to 1912. Qing is also please in Pinyin

21 R is for rice and also recycling Rice is the staple food for most Chinese people. It is often served at the end of the meal to fill you up! These sacks are outside a shop and contain different kinds of rice. Dan chao fan is fried rice and Bai fan is plain rice. In China, just like at home, people are encouraged to recycle as much as possible, to avoid waste and to protect the environment. These bins, in a park, are for organic and inorganic litter. What would you put in each one?

22 S is for Shanghai and silk Shanghai is the largest city in China with 18 million people. It is on the banks of the delta of the river Yangtze. Much of the city is very modern. This view across the river is towards the new Pudong area. Silk is used a lot in China; it is made from the cocoons of the mulberry silkworm. Many clothes and accessories are made from silk. The picture shows silk being spun and woven.

23 T is for Tai Chi and tea Tai Chi is a form of Chinese martial art which is generally practised alone; it is also a form of relaxation which many Chinese do before work or at lunchtime, often in parks. The Chinese drink a lot of tea! It is often served in small, pretty china cups; it is never served with milk!

24 U is for umbrellas Everyone in China seems to carry an umbrella! They are very useful in case of a sudden downpour or to keep the strong sunshine off you. They come in all shapes, colours and sizes and are often made of silk.

25 V is for vegetables Vegetables are used a lot in Chinese cooking; some are ones which are familiar with – carrots, cabbage, onions and mushrooms. There are others which may be new to you - water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, bean sprouts, sweetcorn, lotus root and eggplant. The markets are full of fresh food and meals are often eaten around a large round table with the food in the centre.

26 W is for Wuhan and water melon Wuhan is a city on the Yangtze with its confluence the Han River; it has flooded often in the past, but the Chinese are hoping that the new dam will stop this happening. The river is very wide here and is used a lot by boats and people swimming (not to be recommended – the water was dirty and fast flowing! Meals in China always end with Water melon!

27 X is for Xian and Xie xie Xian is the capital of Shaanxi Province where there is an underground Army of Terracotta Warriors of the first Chinese emperor, Qin Shi Huangdi. In 1974, peasants digging a well uncovered these life-size horse and warrior figures. There were approximately 7,000 figures from the tomb have been restored by archaeologists and are exhibited in a hall built above the excavation site Xie xie is thank you in Pinyin

28 Y is for Yangtze river and yuan The Yangtze, also known as Chang Jiang, is a huge river, about 6300 km long. It is the longest river in Asia and the third longest in the world (can you find out which are the longest rivers?) It flows through spectacular scenery and is well used for many purposes. The yuan is the Chinese unit of currency. Notes and coins come in different amounts.

29 Z is for Zai jian Zai jian is Goodbye in Pinyin

30 Acknowledgements This presentation is based mainly on photos taken and information gathered in July – August 2007 while taking part in the GA international committees study tour to China, The Yangtze Odyssey. Thanks in particular to Sarah Maude and Adam Nicholls who led the group and to Janice Dickson of Ian Dickson Travel Service who made the travel arrangements. Further photos can be seen on Photos and text by Kate Russell; photos of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and Terracotta Warriors Sarah Maude.

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