As part of the art history curriculum here at RDFZ King’s College School Hangzhou, students study prehistoric art, an important period in humankind’s artistic development. Pupils have already studied the cave paintings of Lascaux, France, and the sculptures of the ancient Jomon civilisation in Japan, and now they are studying Liangzhu culture, the last Neolithic jade culture in China’s Yangtze River Delta.
The culture was first discovered in 1931 near the small town of Liangzhu, which is very close to our school. Liangzhu Museum was built on a site where many treasures were found and we were lucky enough to visit the museum with international students from Grades 1, 2, 5 and 6.
Students loved learning about this ancient civilisation and seeing the wonderful level of skill their craftspeople showed. Many of the artefacts were carved so beautifully that we still do not know how they were done.
Trying to consider the lives of others helps our students develop empathy. In addition, having the time and space to look at different exhibits and to sketch and discuss really brought their work to life. More than anything, buddying the older and younger students together gave the older students a chance to lead and the younger students the opportunity to learn from their bigger brothers and sisters.