Teaching kids their ABCs, 123s and social classes in China

When we order baby things online, like diapers or whatever, they often throw in free stuff (赠品), like kids books with bilingual vocabulary so Chinese kids can learn English (which we use them the other way around, of course). Our living room is littered with these things. Anyway, in this particular book about “People,” which covers family members and common jobs, they apparently felt that Chinese kids’ basic vocabulary ought to include social classes:

Even though we’re used to hearing and using the term “peasant” 农民 in China, the only other time I’d heard or used the term was in history class talking about pre-Industrial Europe. Just reminds me how — and people really get tired of hearing this — China is big, is changing really fast, and that there are “many chinas”; traveling from Shanghai to the Chinese countryside is like going to the moon.

Family members, of course, are from a different social class:

2 thoughts on “Teaching kids their ABCs, 123s and social classes in China”

  1. haha … yes!!!

    We have one where 爸爸/father is carrying a briefcase and looks like a 50ish Chinese businessman. In contrast, 妈妈/mother is sitting knitting, is a blonde whitey, and looks in her 20s.

    And most grandparents in our books look like great-grandparents.

    (We have never received online gifts like that.)

  2. China’s one child policy has been in place for over 30 years and I am curious to see if they still have the terms for uncles from the mother/father side and aunts from the mother/father side and of course cousins from all sides.

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