WMCI Community Classes

This fall, WMCI will offer the following courses: Chinese Level I, Chinese Painting I, Walking into Today's China, and Erhu I for Session I; Chinese Level II, Chinese Calligraphy, Chinese Painting II, and Erhu II for Session II.  Additionally, Chinese cooking classes will be held on Thursdays from October 19th through November 9th. A Taiji course will be held over both sessions, beginning September 5th and ending November 14th (no class October 17th).

Please sign up today to secure your spot, as the classes are filling up quickly!

Beginning Chinese

Open to students of all skill levels, this class covers the basic phonetics, grammar, and writing systems of conversational Chinese. The lessons integrate Chinese Culture, including character etymology and relevant holidays, with each lesson. The class places most emphasis on listening and speaking.

Walking into Today’s China

This course provides a panoramic view of a today’s China, including pop culture, consumerism, social media, dating culture, recreation, etc. Through our learning and discussion, students will gain up-to-date knowledge about life in a modern and booming China.

Erhu Workshop

Introduced during the Tang Dynasty, the Erhu ( 二胡) has played a central role in traditional Chinese music for over 2,000 years. This class is designed to teach students basic Erhu techniques and songs while exposing them to classic Erhu music.

Chinese Painting

Chinese painting is a delicate art form that emphasizes the beauty of simple, flowing brush strokes and graceful designs.  It combines the arts of poetry, calligraphy, painting, and seal engraving. The class will provide students with fundamental knowledge of Chinese painting and expose them to a variety of traditional painting techniques, thereby reflecting time-honored principles of Chinese philosophy and culture.

Beginner Yang Style Taiji

The ancient Chinese martial art of Taiji (太极) combines breath work, balance practice, and intentional movement into one beautiful and calming method of meditation. Yang Style Taiji improves balance, helps posture, and overall allows those who practice it to become more grounded. This course will also include some practice in Qigong, which is energy work and has been referred to as “Daoist Yoga.” This course is taught at beginner level and open to students of all skill types. Stan Rockwell, an experienced local martial arts master, develops and teaches the class.

Chinese Calligraphy

Chinese Calligraphy, the most revered of fine arts in China, is closely linked to Chinese culture, aesthetics, philosophy, and history. The class is designed to help students appreciate the unique beauty of this art form and learn how to write traditional Chinese characters with a bamboo brush. Students will understand the way calligraphy is integral to various aspects of Chinese culture, improving the students' cultural proficiency and writing. The course's main emphasis is individuality and creativity while practicing the age-old techniques.

Chinese Cooking

Learn to cook delicious Chinese cuisine! Dr. Ed McMahon will guide students of all ages and skill levels through four authentic dishes: Yu Xiang Beef, Honan Shrimp, Szechwan Eggplant, and General Tso’s Chicken. McMahon has earned a certificate from a Chinese Culinary school and has been cooking traditional Chinese cuisine for over 20 years.


1) The cost for each course is $10/class, to be paid in full on the first day of class. In general, each session holds 8 classes per course ($80). In fall 2017, the Taiji class will meet 10 times throughout the semester, totaling $100; Walking into Today’s China will meet 6 times, for $60 in total; and the Cooking Class will have four classes, costing $40. W&M faculty, staff, and students always receive a 50% discount (e.g. $40 for 8 classes).

2) Payment is due on the first day of class and accepted by cash or check. Please make a check payable to: The College of William and Mary. 


Click here to see the classes we have offered in the past.