Curious about how a chinese playgroup in Singapore differs from a regular one? Have you ever considered warming your toddler up to your mother tongue via an informal setting? Whether you have or haven’t considered this popular approach, here are several benefits of introducing your child to a Chinese playgroup that will win you over. A Mandarin-speaking teacher and playgroup are a proven bulwark against the future difficulties that he or she might encounter when progressing in his or her learning curve in school.
How Chinese Playgroups in Singapore Provides Worldly Outlook
MindChamps Chinese PreSchool curriculum expert Chen Ying is an ardent advocate of nurturing a bilingual child in a Mandarin-speaking play environment, regardless of whether the child is ethnically Chinese.
“China has been booming for years and will continue to grow,” she enthuses. “So learning Mandarin in a Chinese playgroup in Singapore can only be a boon for a young person. China’s economic and cultural status very apparently affects the whole world, which is why more and more adults are learning Mandarin. In MindChamps Chinese PreSchool, we seek to cultivate the next generation of successful people, who have talents highly applicable in the 21st century.”
Identification of Pivotal Junctures and Challenges
“We feel that it is essential to identify the eminent stages of a child’s language learning process, as young as the playgroup years and focus on strengthening their linguistic skills during these crucial periods,” Chen proffers.
“Singapore is a multi-ethnic country with several main languages. Our first language is English, which has subsequently become our primary language that most of us speak at home too. This has led to the foundation of most children’s Mandarin becoming weak, and resulted in a waning of interest of many primary school students.”
Chen proposes that parents and teachers curb this loss of interest during this crucial phase by sparking their children’s interest through other forms of engagement.
“Chinese playgroups in Singapore foster a conducive environment that will ensure the continual development of their Chinese language skills, which has to raise a child’s Mandarin exposure and learning opportunities.”
Concentration on Culture
Chinese playgroups also place a focus on Chinese culture. The Chinese language and Chinese cultural are indissociably intertwined, which gives educators a chance to help students grasp a sense of identity and sense of self, while improving their mother tongue, Chen suggests.
“Let’s teach the second language in an environment that places as much emphasis on it as on the first language,” recommends Chen, who elaborates that at her Chinese playgroup, she and her colleagues are committed to creating a favorable Chinese language learning environment for their young children.
“The age of two is a crucial stage in a child’s language learning journey, which will determine his or her future fluency in the language, as well as the coherence of the sentences that he or she forms,” Chen observes.
Utilising other Forms of Memory
“We tap on techniques that involve muscle memory and musical memory too,” chimes Chen. “As well as activities like cooking that have been proven effective with optimising learning and retention.”
“Many of our classes use Mandarin, and also tap on a variety of activities and teaching methods, in order to familiarise students with communicating in mandarin on a day-to-day basis, as well as encourage within each of them an intrinsic desire to learn Chinese,” she divulges.
“We use Mandarin to give instructions, tell stories and jokes, play games and sing songs in our sessions for two-year-olds, which helps lay a firm foundation for the future development of their prowess in this language.”
Incorporating Aspects of Art Therapy
As many young children exhibit their artistic inclinations from a very young age, Chen’s classes teach through traditional art too.
“By learning about traditional art and getting to make art, we are again expounding the many interesting aspects of Chinese culture and tradition,” she highlights.
Paying Attention to Character Building too
“Our classes greatly value the cultivation of our students characters,” Chen comments.
“Which is why we infuse our lessons with important values, in the hope that they will become cornerstones of our young people’s morals.”
Students are Taught to Learn Lessons from Chinese History
Chen divulges that she teaches her students to interpret the countless lessons that 5,000 years of Chinese tradition have to impart, which introduces these young children to basic critical thinking. “This is a stepping stone that we offer in our playgroups,” she adds. “Besides values and wisdom, we also distil Chinese literature, which can be very enjoyable.”
“With China’s economic take-off, the world is looking at limitless business opportunities in and with China. Consequently, more and more people are devoting themselves to studying the Chinese language and way of life. Master Chinese and Chinese developments in fields like aviation, medicine, science and innovation will reveal themselves to you,” enlightens Chen, who shares that she is passionate about arming her students with the appropriate skills for overcoming future challenges. “Both our students and their parents can attest that language is much more than just a tool of communication.”
Not convinced? Find out what parents have to say.
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