The official web site of the Chinese Embassy in the Washington, DC. You can download visa and passport information, read China's official position on its history, culture and population control, and access press releases in response to Chinese controversies in the United States.
The U.S. State Department web site offers an excellent primer on China. Learn about China's economy, population and history, including the Chinese dynasties, "The Great Leap Forward" and the Cultural Revolution.
The Beijing Page offers a good selection of links to many useful web sites -- though some are non-existent or cheesy -- and can be used to access weather conditions, language tips, and information on travel and cultural attractions in China.
This United States Embassy web site offers useful information on obtaining visas for China, United States Information Service (USIS) advisories on political and travel conditions, China adoption requirements, information on bilateral trade issues, and major press releases relating to China.
This leisure travel web site has good cultural etiquette and geographical information on China, as well as a list of the Chinese Tourist Offices around the world. It offers travel advice and tour packages as well, but this is a case of "buyer beware," so do your homework and check around for other recommendations!
Official web site of the National Association for the Education of Young Children. This is a useful site for educators who want to plug into a network of peers and learn about conferences and public policy news related to education, and for parents seeking parenting resources. The "Early Years are Learning Years" section has a solid archive of articles and lesson plans in many categories, including diversity.
This web site offers a diverse range of interesting articles on parenting and early development, ideas on creating classroom activities that are stimulating, and workshops/programs of potential interest.
This web site provides an abridged version of the "Carnegie Task Force on Meeting the Needs of Young Children" report. It makes the case that the United States needs to invest more heavily in its youngest children, promote parent education and responsibility, and create better child-care options. The study takes a fairly in-depth look at the critical years of birth through three, and provides suggestions on how to mobilize communities to better support families.
This web site, run by The Consultative Group on Early Childhood Care and Development, has some interesting research on early education practices in different countries, including Bosnia, Malaysia and Mexico. Unfortunately, there is nothing on China. It also has good, in-depth articles and presentations on the importance of early childhood learning, and the challenges we face in reforming the present system in the United States.
Official Web site for Washington State's Governor's Commission on Early Learning, which is chaired by Mona Lee Locke and Melinda French Gates. The Commission focuses on children from birth to age 5, and brings together leaders in health, education, child care, business and government to raise awareness of issues related to early learning in children.
For more information about international adoptions:
In the world's most populous nation, orphanages swell with disabled and unwanted children. A Northwest agency has helped change the fate of China's young outcasts, not only through adoption by Americans, but through better care for those left behind. Read the full Seattle Times article.
One child at a time: A young girl's journey lights way to hope. The story of an abandoned Chinese girl and her journey to a loving family in Idaho. Read the full Seattle Times article.
Web designer Julie Valentine is an adoptive parent, and her web site features good information for prospective adoptive parents, as well as useful links. She provides a review of several other adoption-related web sites, and a listing for parents who are looking to adopt from within the United States.
This useful web site, run by Families with Children from China, provides adoption information as well as a support network for adoptive parents. It has personal stories and photos of recent adoptions, a long list of adoption agencies (not endorsed by FWCC or KCTS), and information on contacting or forming a local chapter.
The United States State Department web site provides useful information on international adoptions as well as international travel. It has good information on visas, U. S. embassies abroad and travel warnings.
Cultural Exchange Programs
And if you are interested in the organization that arranged this visit to China:
Ambassadors International offers international exchange programs for adults and students, and promotes "world service through cultural exchange." Based in Spokane, Washington, this 42-year-old organization began as an effort by President Eisenhower to diffuse Cold War tensions and bring the East and West together. This web site gives an interesting history of the organization, and users can search, by profession and location, for upcoming exchanges.