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Old 06-01-2012, 12:56 AM   #1
naomi's mama
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Anyone with experience in chinese, mandarin immersion schools?

DD got accepted to a mandarin immersion school next year and we are very excited (was lottery), but also terrified since we don't speak mandarin. But we chose the program since she is advanced (reads chapter books already), so we wanted a program that is academically challenging for her. She is pretty outgoing extroverted so I don't think she'd get frustrated with not understanding and meeting new kids. Plus, since it's a public school, it's free! They'll be teaching 90% mandarin, 10% English. Teacher is a native speaker and will not speak English. The English is from the librarian or art teacher.

Has anyone had a child who has gone through a mandarin immersion program? What are some good resources to help families? I'm sure I'll learn more as I meet more parents of kids already in the program (this is their 3rd year), but wanted to check here first.


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Old 06-01-2012, 05:49 AM   #2
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Re: Anyone with experience in chinese, mandarin immersion schools?

My sisters are in one in Oregon. They are 8 and 10 currently. My father and step mother barely speak Mandarin. My dad has been to China 3 times though (twice to get my sisters).

From what I have been told (keep in mind I live in New Jersey so I could be WAY off), you don't really need to know it at home. They will learn FAR faster then you so just go with that. I think if you wanted to be a bit ahead of the game, you could get Rosetta Stone so you could learn it, but I think that only goes up to level 3 (most of their programs have 5 levels).

One of my sisters is extremely driven in academics and is a tremendous self starter. She has done very well in the school. My other sister is equally as driven, but just to sports rather then academics. From my understanding, neither is doing bad in school.

My father does do the typical parent things and help out with different festivals and stuff at school. I guess you can get a bit of what you are to do from that. Dad is also trying hard to learn Mandarin but it is a hard language to learn.

I am going to be away this weekend, but if you have any questions, pm me and I can try to contact my father for answers.

Congratulations on getting in! If we had a school like that here, I would be trying to get my son in, if for no other reason then we are a multicultural family and it is important for him to learn a bit of what his aunt's heritage is (DH and I am are northern European mutts).
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