JM Instructor Coordinates China Trip

Nick Johnson, Staff Writer

Joaquin Moraga Intermediate School teacher Don Read and his wife will be accompanying students to China in late June of 2014. So far, eight students have signed up, but  there is still room for 7 more.

Junior Kourosh Arasteh organized the trip with Read. Arasteh had the idea when he and Read were on a flight together on the way to a debate tournament.

Read is excited about the upcoming trip to China. “The more I read about it, the more excited and enthusiastic I am.” he said.

Junior Sharon Maher also plans on taking the trip, and praised Read’s efforts to kickstart the program. “He and Kourosh worked together well. Mr Read is the bomb. He’s one of my favorite teachers.” she said. The journey will be conducted through an educational tour company called ACIS Tours.

The group will be traveling to locations throughout China, including Shanghai, Beijing and Xi’an. Students will visit modern locations as well as areas of historical interest, according to Maher. “We’re going to hit the major tourist attractions as well as doing some of the more local activities,” she said.

Their itinerary includes cultural activities as well, such as tai chi classes and cultural dinners.

Read said that the trip would be a great blend of old and new. “There’s the history, there’s the culture, and there’s just the experience,” he said.

“I want to learn about  a whole new culture that has been very influential,” Maher said.  “I love seeing temples. I’ve seen others in Thailand and Cambodia, and I want to compare them.”

“In general, travel is important because people can pop the bubble of Moraga, and personally, I love learning anything new about the world,” Maher said.

The trip is 9 days long, and will cost students $4000. The cost covers the flight, hotels, foods, and activities. Read said that if any students are still interested in attending the trip, they should contact him.

In addition, Read will still be going on his annual trip to London and Paris with his eighth graders in the summer.