New York State Archives, NYSA_A3045-78_A12910
A typical business street in Peking (Beijing), 1930.
How is the clothing of the people in the photograph different from the clothing Americans wore in 1930?
How do people in Beijing dress today?
Why do you think there aren’t any women in the photograph?
What type of vehicles do you see in the photograph? How do they run?
Why do you think there aren’t any cars on this street?
How are these stores and businesses like the places you shop? How are they different?
Where would you shop if you visited Beijing?
What forms of currency were used in China before the yuan?
Math: Chinese currency is called the Renminbi, or “people’s currency.” The basic unit of money in China is called the yuan. If one US dollar equals about eight yuan (depending on the exchange rate), how many yuans would your school lunch cost? Find out what the current exchange rate is for converting dollars to yuans. Has the exchange rate been rising or falling? Research what factors affect exchange rates.
English Language Arts: The signs in this photograph are written with Chinese characters. Research how Chinese writing developed and how English writing developed. How are they different? What are some advantages of each type of writing? What systems of writing are used for other world languages?
Barber, Nicola. Beijing (Great Cities of the World). Milwaukee, WI: World Almanac Library, 2004. ISBN: 0836850289
Anderson, Dale. Ancient China (History in Art). Chicago: Raintree, 2005. ISBN: 1410905195
Ball, Jacqueline A. Ancient China: Archaeology Unlocks the Secrets of China’s Past. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic, 2007. ISBN: 079227783X
Green, Jen. Countries of the World: China. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic, 2006. ISBN: 9780792261803, 9780792275756
Mamdani, Shelby. Traditions from China. Austin: Raintree Steck-Vaughn, 1999. ISBN: 0817253831
Olson, Kay Melchisedech. China. Minn.: Capstone Press, 2003. ISBN: 0736815317
Olson, Nathan. China. Mankato, Minn.: Capstone Press, 2005. ISBN: 0736826874
Shuter, Jane. Ancient China (Excavating the Past). Chicago: Heinemann, 2006. ISBN: 1403459959.