China’s Newest Cram School Craze: Sex Ed Camps


SHANDONG, East China — “What are the differences between men’s and women’s bodies?” asks Jiang Lingling. The 11 young children huddled around her look thoughtful for a moment. “Girls’ chests are bigger than boys’,” says one boy. “But Captain America’s chest is also big,” counters another. At the back of the room, the children’s parents... Continue Reading →

Parenting Crisis Sends China’s Moms and Dads Back to School


SHANDONG, East China — Huang Wenjuan never thought there was anything wrong with her approach to parenting until her teenage daughter stormed out of their house after a big fight. Huang and her husband searched all over the city that snowy February night, and eventually found her in the stairwell of their apartment building. “She... Continue Reading →

Left-Field Careers for Farmers’ Kids


YUNNAN, Southwest China — Zhi Zhengjiao, 17, grew up among rolling green hills full of corn stalks and tea shrubs. But despite this natural vista, other outlooks remain dull. For children like Zhengjiao, there are two typical career paths: becoming a migrant worker in the city or staying home to farm. Zhengjiao, who has waist-length... Continue Reading →

Teaching Sex Ed to China’s Special Needs Students


GUANGDONG, South China — Early Sunday morning, eight teenagers sit in a row looking at pictures of male and female bodies on the whiteboard and trying their best to answer the teacher’s question: Which parts of our bodies are private? “Wee-wee,” Ming Hang, a 12-year-old boy with autism, quickly replies, half giggling. “Remember, let’s call... Continue Reading →

China’s LGBT Youth Face Lots of Bullying, Little Acceptance


From his first day at school, Sun Bin, now 21, was bullied for being feminine, a “sissy.” “I’m used to being called a faggot or a pervert,” said Sun, who is now a junior at a university in central China’s Henan province. There’s one instance from primary school that Sun will never forget. A dozen... Continue Reading →

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