Santa Claus is coming to… Gaochun!

Yesterday our family had the opportunity, along with the Sunshine Project and Nanjing LDS Branch, to once again serve the children at Gaochun Special School.  This time, Eric and Bella were able to come with us, so that made the trip even more special!

Here are the highlights!

The first thing we did with the kids was to decorate a tree for each classroom!  The kids loved this!

This is one of the deaf classes signing “I love you!”

The older group of deaf children found out that Bella could communicate in written Chinese and they went nuts!

The “talked” for a long time in a notebook, asking her all sorts of questions!

They also spent some time teaching her how to sign some Chinese words, like “Nihao!”

Mike, a student from the class that I co-taught last year is translating for me.

We are getting ready to sing the kids favorite song that Miss Becky taught them!

The Hokey Pokey.  (I’ll spare you the photos of us dancing! 😉

And then we sang “Jingle Bells” for the kids!

We were TOTALLY into it!

This photo (above) was taken by the teacher who had my camera while we were singing.

Apparently she really liked using my camera, as there were about 50 photos of the kids that I didn’t take!


We are still up on the stage, but now we are explaining the craft that we are helping the kids make.

Our Santa beards were a hit!

I loved how the children were helping each other!

The girls (above) remembered me from last summer and both RAN into the room and gave me HUGE hugs!

I love these kids!

“Ho, Ho, Ho!”

“Ho, Ho, Ho, Peace on earth, good will to men!”

My adorable husband was so helpful!

He really got in and helped the kids!

Also, you can see Lana Parke behind him!

She had a huge smile on her face the entire day!

“Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho…”

“I saw Santa kissing Alisha!”

After our Santa beard project we broke for lunch!

These kids were hungry after such a fun morning!

Now it’s time for Santa presents!

The Sunshine project brought ear muffs for all the kids

to compliment the hats made by our Nanjing Branch,

Operation Orphan Care and several of my dear friends!

Super model!

Kim Malan helping with the hats.

This boy is one of my buddies from last summer!

He also felt that hugs were in order when we were reunited!

His smile is award winning!

The student volunteer organization of Nanjing University brought this fun glitter craft!

They stayed in the classrooms and helped the kids with this project while Santa made the rounds!

A view of the school courtyard with the cafeteria in the distance.


On a side note…

We were very impressed with their current art project.

These little puppets were about 8 inches tall and so detailed!

My kids want to learn how to make these!  We’ll have to find someone to teach us!


In the end it was one of the most memorable days we’ve had a in while!

We hope to get back to Gaochun again soon!

Merry Christmas Gaochun children!