尊师重教 Honor the Teacher and Stress Education
It is a tradition in China to attach importance to education and respect the teacher. Since ancient times, the Chinese nation has put education in a very important position. As Guan Zhong said over 2,600 years ago: it takes a year to grow crops, ten years to grow trees but a hundred years to rear people. And in China's first monograph on education-Record of Learning-an idea of "education first"was proposed, which holds that the prime task of a state is education. In the Zhou Dynasty more than 3,000 years ago, the government established schools of different scales at different levels according to administrative divisions, and officials acted as part-time teachers. In the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC), Confucius opened a private school in his hometown, and put forward the idea that any person, whether of high or low social status, poor or rich, had the right to receive an education.
Since great importance is attached to education, intellectuals in China have high social status, and highly literate men are respected. Since ancient times, all levels of society have tried by every means to send their children to school.
The importance attached to education determines the status of the teacher. In China, there are many sayings about respecting the teacher. For example, the teacher, no matter of distinguished or humble origin, rich or poor, should be respected; a tutor for a day is a father for a lifetime. And since ancient times, people from the emperor down to the lowest subject have all shown great respect for the teacher. For instance, in the Confucian Temple of Beijing, there are boards inscribed with characters written by 13 emperors of the Qing Dynasty, showing imperial respect and admiration for this great educator of ancient China.
Respect for the teacher can be seen in all aspects of social life. The teacher could be excused from etiquette when meeting the emperor, and officials should bow down when meeting the teacher. People call the teacher "honorable Master"or"Sir", and give them respect and priority in daily life. Now, China has a Teachers'Day on September 10, in order to demonstrate public esteem for them.