Meet Yi-Na Chung!

Danny Stock

As part of our ongoing series Meet Our GDS Faculty and Staff, we are excited to present: Meet Yi-Na Chung! 

Read the Q&A below to learn more about Yi-Na, Lower/Middle School Chinese teacher.

What do you love about GDS?
What I love about GDS is my interaction with students. As a language teacher, I have the privilege of teaching students from an early age until they leave Middle School. Seeing their understanding of the cultural differences between Western and Eastern traditions while also developing their speaking skills in different contexts creates such a rewarding experience.

Why do you teach?
One of my passions is learning different languages because they broaden people’s thinking by helping them understand different cultures and perspectives. Languages create bridges between people and bring cultures together. I want to instill this interest in my students. I am motivated to help them see how other people live. More importantly, I want my students to learn to be more empathetic and compassionate human beings. I believe learning a new language will do that.

A favorite lesson to teach or favorite part of your job?
Teaching students to use Chinese in different situations. I especially enjoy my students’ projects on cooking shows.

Your teaching or work style in three words?
Practice. Action. Repeat (the previous two).

A top hope/wish for your students and/or colleagues?
I wish for them to be caring, kind, healthy, and happy learners.

Personal passions/hobbies/pastimes?
Knitting, sewing, crocheting, and cooking

Various favorites…?

  • Favorite recipe: dumplings
  • Favorite book: Brene Brown’s The Power of Vulnerability
  • Favorite movie: The Little Mermaid
  • Favorite Music: Bossa Nova or Claude Debussy

Family and/or pets highlight?
Training my cat, King. I like to teach him different tricks such as sit down, hi-five, handshake, and fetch.

One thing about yourself your students/colleagues/others probably don't know?
One summer, I volunteered to teach in a Cambodian orphanage. While there, the volunteer group and I helped build a classroom for the kids.

One thing on your life "bucket list" you've already accomplished?
My biggest bucket list item was to work and start a life in America. I’m happy to call this place my second home.

One thing on your life “bucket list” you have yet to accomplish?
I would like to own a Taiwanese tea shop where I can serve traditional Taiwanese cuisines and also teach handcrafting classes.

Years at GDS?
Seven years down and several months into the eighth year.

With a tip from Yi-Na, we reached out to hear what a colleague had to say...
MS history teacher Kate Maloney said, “”Spending time with Yi-Na reveals many secrets to her success. She values relationships and gives generously of her time. She knows her students and how to help them succeed, and she possesses organizational skills like an Olympic champion! Walking by her room is always a treat: you're often greeted with a song, skit, or if you are incredibly lucky, a cooking activity where they have leftovers (pre-covid)! She weaves just the right amount of fun into her classes to hook the students. For those of us lucky to have her as a colleague, her thoughtfulness stands out. Whether it's a birthday card, a yummy treat, or a beautifully crafted handmade mask, she consistently is looking out and caring for others.”