Michelle Obama walks the Wall, jumps rope on China tour

Michelle Obama and her daughters on a trip to China.
Michelle Obama and her daughters on a trip to China.Amanda Lucidon via Pete Souza

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By Eun Kyung Kim
First lady Michelle Obama dances with folk performers as she visits the City Wall, in Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, on Monday.PETAR KUJUNDZIC / Today

Michelle Obama and her daughters got an up-close look at the famed Terra Cotta warriors on Monday, their fourth day in a week-long goodwill tour across China.

The visit to the celebrated sculptures, depicting soldiers who protected the first Chinese emperor, marked numerous events during their trip to the nation’s ancient city of Xi'an, Shaanxi Province.

The first lady and daughters Sasha and Malia examine the Terra Cotta Warriors.PETER PARKS / Today

There, traditional folk dancers greeted the first lady and her daughters, Malia and Sasha, with a performance. Obama then joined students in a game of shuttlecock as well as jump rope.

The first lady skips rope in front of Chinese school children in Xi'an. iPETER PARKS / Today

Since arriving in China on Thursday night, the first lady has documented her spring break travels with daughters on Instagram, using the hashtag #FLOTUSinChina. Her mother, Marian Robinson, also is accompanying her on the trip. 

On Sunday, Obama and her family strolled a section of the Great Wall, participated in a calligraphy demonstration, and visited the former Imperial Palace in Beijing's Forbidden City.

The first lady has largely avoided controversial topics during the visit, mainly promoting education and studying abroad. Over the weekend, however, she took a swipe at media censorship in China.

The first lady and her mother, Marian Robinson, share a light moment with Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife, Peng Liyuan, in Beijing last Friday.Andy Wong / Today

“It’s so important for information and ideas to flow freely over the Internet and through the media, because that’s how we discover the truth,” she told students Saturday at the Stanford Center at Peking University.

“That’s how we learn what’s really happening in our communities and our country and our world. And that’s how we decide which values and ideas we think are best — by questioning and debating them vigorously, by listening to all sides of an argument, and by judging for ourselves.”

Obama will spend her last two days in China in Chengdu, where she will meet with high school students. She and her family also will make a visit to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding.


The first lady looks as sophisticated in designer dresses as she does in outfits from J. Crew.

Eun Kyung Kim is a TODAY.com writer based in Washington. Follow her on Google+ or Twitter.