Rural China Education Foundation

Our mission is to promote education in rural China that empowers students to improve their lives and their communities. We believe rural students should develop skills and confidence from their education that will help them deal with real world problems, deepen their understanding of social issues, and prepare them to improve their environments. Our strategy is to accumulate and share practice-based expertise on curriculum and teaching methods that meets these goals.

Front page of a student-run newspaper

Front page of a student-run newspaper
We help students organize clubs and projects in which they can take the lead, such as creating a school newspaper. Most newspapers in rural schools are simply filled with essays students copy from other books. However, this one was planned by the sixth grade class and filled entirely with writings and reports from children at the school. They even voted on the name: "Rising Sun." (view small | med | large | orig)

First Graders love reading

First Graders love reading
A lifelong habit and love of reading is crucial to broadening rural students' horizons and helping them to become independent learners. RCEF starts early by promoting free reading and access to quality children's books in rural elementary schools. Here, first graders in Shanxi Province pose with their beloved "Big Book." (view small | med | large | orig)

Inviting in guests from the community

Inviting in guests from the community
RCEF teachers reach out to parents and community members to get involved in education. Here, a local grandmother comes to tell stories to a class while her husband is in a neighboring class giving a living history lesson to the sixth graders about his experiences in the village during Mao's time. Similarly, we strive to bring students out into the real world to learn from people in society, whether through interviewing, observations, or hands-on projects. (view small | med | large | orig)

Community Research

Community Research
RCEF aims for schooling to advance community development. Here, a student practices interviewing and data-collection skills by talking with a villager about what kind of books she prefers for a new village library. Afterwards, he adds his findings to the class and they perform simple statistical analysis to decide how many books of each category to purchase. They feel that their work and learning has a real effect and is important to benefiting their community. (view small | med | large | orig)

Express Yourself

Express Yourself
Fostering speaking skills and creativity are strongly emphasized as part of RCEF's teaching methods. While many rural students are shy and traditional classrooms offer little chance for them to grow in self-confidence or express their own opinions, RCEF gives rural students space to develop their own voice and talents through theater and drama activities. (view small | med | large | orig)