We are excited to announce that next school year we will expand our Chinese immersion program to include students in our early learning center.
Chinese immersion is a highly successful program that promotes strong bilingual opportunities in English and Chinese for our students. We intend to open two classes with the same learning community structure that currently operates in the early learning center. Learning communities in the ELC function with two teachers, two instructional assistants, and up to 32 students.
The SAS early learning center is inspired by the early childhood educational philosophy of Reggio Emilia, Italy. We will be offering this approach in a full Chinese language immersive setting. This will be a unique opportunity for our youngest learners to begin their language development skills at a very formative time in their lives and benefit from all the advantages of Reggio’s emphasis on developing capable and competent learners, curious about the world around them.
Our Chinese immersion program was launched in 2017-18 and has expanded significantly since that time. We have seen interest in our kindergarten immersion classes grow each year and there is now a waitlist to enroll. We believe our program has successfully matured to a point where we can confidently offer this new opportunity. The opportunity to begin Chinese immersion at the ELC will strengthen our learners’ growth as they progress to kindergarten.
Outlined below is the progressive model we use in our Chinese immersion program to develop strong bilingual learners:
Our early learning center deputy principal, Jo McIlroy, and world language director, Hui Xu will reach out to current families in the coming weeks to share more information about the program. If you are interested in learning more about this program, please click here to share your interest.
The elementary school’s Chinese immersion program represents only the beginning of what is possible for our students as they develop their bilingualism, biliteracy, and socio-cultural competence. Their growth continues in both middle school and high school with some of the opportunities listed below:
Competency to thrive in core subjects taught in English
Higher level Chinese courses available including Near Native
Possible options may include choice of Chinese advisory and elective class in Chinese
Chinese language extracurricular activities
Higher level Chinese courses up to college course level, including Advanced Placement (AP) Chinese Language and Culture, Advanced courses and Advanced Topic (AT) Chinese Language: History
Seal of Biliteracy for students who have attained required language proficiency in English and one more language by high school graduation
Chinese Honor Society
Several service clubs focus on China with travel and language use possibilities that offer experiential learning opportunities and extend learning beyond classrooms.