Sunday, November 16, 2008

Chinese Schools and Teaching of Moral Values

Photo by Wong Meng Lei - Chinese moral values embedded in the plaque or bian.

These four words were written by Dr. Sun Yat Sen. His calligraphy usually bears the name of Sun Wen. This wall plaque has been hanging from the hall of Kwang Hua School since it was inaugurated in the 1920's. Kwang Hua school was established by the Methodist Church and the Kutien settlers at that time who came in the second and third batches of Foochow Settlers brought in by Wong Nai Siong. While the Ming Ching Foochows settled in Sungei Merah and other spots the Kutien settled in Sg. Sadit.

This was a notable and noble ideology of the Chinese at the turn of the 20th Century who believed strongly that by hanging a bian above the heads of the teachers and students Chinese moral values and a strong sense of mission would be inculcated. These were indeed the noble thoughts or ideals of all the Chinese forefathers who were farsighted enough to establish Chinese schools wherever they went. And generations of Chinese would be living lives of high moral values and having strong community spirit as taught by the bian and other values found in the books.

The banner or plaque bearing the name of Kwang School Sibu was also by the hand of Dr. Sun Yat Sen whose calligraphy was well known.

According to the oral history of Sibu the local Foochow headmen went to China to request Dr. Sun to write these two plaques or bian. Hanging such a remarkable name plague was a great honour for all.

Photo by Wong Meng Lei - calligraphy on the wall of Su Lai School Sibu. This unique calligraphy belonged to another learned man of Sibu.

A special Pien calligraphy by the hand of General Chiang Kai Shek or Chiang Chung Cheng - Hua Nam Primary School Marudi. Photo by Ms. Lau King Ngo. I discovered this not too long ago when I caught sight of it in the See Hua Daily News. So I called up Ms Lau for a favour. And indeed she was so good to send a photo personally to me by the next email!! I am over the moon to have another collection of pien photo under my belt.

I am wondering how many of us ever remember all those four words (Pien) hanging on the wall of our Chinese School Hall today?

An even more interesting fact is that several of these plaques (pien) were written by Dr.Sun Yat Sen and General Chiang Kai Shek who responded to Oversea Chinese' request for the honour of getting them to write these words. The Overseas had raised a large fund to help contribute towards the new China in the early 1900's and these two leaders felt that it was their honour to write for the Overseas China as a token of appreciation from them.

So in a way the calligraphy of many mainland Chinese leaders and learned men were preserved in these pien and they are still hanging on the walls of many schools in Sarawak. What a remarkable historical link!!

0 memories:


web statistics