Updated: Jan 1
On the first day of the year 2023, Chia Chinese Learning is sharing our new year resolution: To grow and innovate the unique and authentic Chinese learning experiences we offer our students, with a focus on helping our learners advance in learning Chinese.
When our teachers are not in the classrooms, they meet regularly to discuss the best practice and tools to better engage our students in an immersive classroom. While we keep saying that learning should be fun, we know that what makes learning stick is ensuring that each of our students feels successful and proud of their hard work. A big part of social emotional learning is acquired when a child is confident and rewarded from learning and achieving the goals..
Chia Chinese Learning is not a Day School, it is not easy to achieve the goal in learning a second language without exposing the learners to the language in a five-day full-immersion school setting. What do we do to achieve the goal? Meaningful lesson is the answer.
Let’s begin by understanding how a child learns a language: she or he listens to the words and the conversation while decoding the speaker’s facial expressions and body language, the more data the brain can collect to understand the meaning, the quicker she or he can reapply that information to speak it as her own language. This is why the immersion learning works best with young children. When Chia cannot offer the maximum exposure, we have to make each second in class count.
We would like to share our well-researched Chia Learning Progression Map (our prediction on how our learners progress with Chia's teaching approaches). While most of the language classes spend significant time teaching only vocabulary to beginners, Chia takes a strikingly unique approach, based on our years of work in Montessori and Regio Amelia classrooms: We immerse our students in a content-based and experiential-learning environment where they learn the new vocabulary by seeing, touching, or studying it while listening to the repetitive sentences purposefully carved into each lesson. With the older learners, whose brains work better when they understand the purpose and goal of learning, they’re taught with Comprehensible Inputs where the lessons are designed to understand and to help the students to tell a story through systematic reading and speaking sentence ladders. This helps the older learners understand and internalize a grammatically correct expression without spending too much time to understand new grammar concepts.
Within a relatively short amount of time, our students move up from novice level to intermediate level with a decent foundation of vocabulary to understand and participate in the conversations, such as understanding and answering in Chinese sentences. More students are able to read and write simple sentences for their projects and internalize the second language with Chia's approaches. With our private group learning settings, we are able to dive deeper into various topics through project-based learning with a focus on meeting the children where they are and where they need to acquire Chinese literacy in real life, including conversations, reading, and writing. Chia learners will grow vertically instead of horizontally on the map. They will be able to use what they learn to comfortably speak and interact in Chinese language in sentences and also read and write about their own interests.