Most students look at early civilisations such as the Ancient Egypt or the Ancient Greeks. They could use a web site such as the British Museum's Ancient China (www.ancientchina.co.ukmenu.html) to do a comparative study to see what stages of development China had reached compared to the more traditionally studied civilisations.
The study of modern Chinese industrialisation offers students an opportunity to see what lessons might be learnt from the experience of industrialisation here in Britain. Ask students to write a letter to the Chinese government in which they advise on the lessons they have learnt about the positive and negative effects of industrialisation from the British experience c1750-1900.
This article could be used to explain the attacks by Japan on China in the 1930s. Ask students to evaluate the strengths of China today and then explain why China was unable to defend itself effectively in the 1930s.
Students examining areas such as the Cold War might create a presentation explaining to the British or US governments how and why China after 1949 was much more of a world power than beforehand. A good starting point is "Condensed China - Chinese History for Beginners" condensedchina.com.