Friday, September 9, 2011

Ni Hao, Everyone....

As my little girl continue her journey to learn mandarin in kindergarten, I would like to setup this blog to help me record the progress and also a place to organize all the resources that I can use to help her achieve her goals. During this very same time, I am going to learn more mandarin as well. Even though I am Chinese, and I can write Chinese, but my mother tongue is actually Cantonese, a southern China dialects that is typical in HK where I was born. I had took some mandarin courses when I was younger but it never really sticks until my work assignment took me to China, Taiwan, and Singapore for a couple years to strengthen my mandarin ability. We are very fortunate that when my daughter was about 2-1/2 yrs old, the daycare that she was in started an experimental mandarin immersion program for children 3 to 5. The mandarin program was imported from Singapore. If you are interested, you can read more here. I never thought that she would be able to learn a different language at this young age as I just don't think I have the time/energy to teach her. It probably doesn't help that we speak exclusively English at home as my husband is an american born Korean. I see that as an excellent opportunity for her to be in a class with better teacher/kid ratio and took it. Never fully think that she will actually learn any Mandarin. Well, I was proven very wrong very quickly. Under the two teacher, Ms. Wen (Mandarin teacher) and Ms. Donna (English Teacher), she is learning things in both languages. And before I know it, she was singing Chinese songs to me. That just blows my mind!!! Being an engineer, I have to test if this knowledge she gain is real. I ask her in mandarin about the songs that she sang and what it means, she correctly answered my questions. Boy, that little brain just soak up everything. This mommy then went on a reading binge and found out all about linguistic development of the young mind. As she gets closer to kindergarten age, I start to wonder what should I do to help her continue her archievments in Mandarin. It would be such a waste if she doesn't continue her study in Mandarin. Yet, it seems so cruel to send her to Chinese school every Saturday(ALL day) to continue the study. Then Fortune hit us again!!! Our school district has won a grant from the Chinese government to set up a K-5 full Immersion Chinese program. This is just AMAZING.... and that is the background of this little blog of mine. Hope to have you on this journey too! Gracie

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