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    What Makes Our Bilingual Programme Unique?


    17 Jul, 2020

    10 : 00

    • At Yew Chung, we pride ourselves in the uniqueness of the bilingual and bicultural nature of our curriculum. As one of our principles states, we believe in equipping our graduates with a deep respect and understanding of world cultures and mastery of English and Chinese, and this, at Yew Chung, is achieved through rigorous programmes and dedicated teachers.

      Yew Chung is a pioneer in developing a Bilingual and Bicultural Curriculum, as already recognised by the University of Bath in its report on international schools for UNESCO in the 80’s, and continued to develop the curriculum to suit the current education landscape while maintaining exceptional language competencies.

      What makes the YCIS Beijing Language Programme unique are the following aspects:

      YCIS Co-Teaching ModelCo-teaching can be characterised as a model which encompasses having a Chinese and international teacher in the classroom. They plan and teach collaboratively with the aim of exposing students to international mindedness. The formation of our Learning Communities stimulated an even more positive impact on bilingual and bicultural learning as the physical learning spaces impacted not only how students learnt, but also how our local and western teachers taught and interacted with one another. Bilingualism was developed through the introduction of horizontal and vertical links where students of different language abilities could interact with one another – with the support of a teacher who could develop their language skills.

      YCIS Chinese Language CurriculumLike with the English Programme, students are grouped according to their language abilities into Chinese as an Additional Language (CAL) or Chinese as a First Language (CFL). Lessons are focused on Chinese studies, where students learn about various aspects, including Chinese History and culture. It’s important to add that all students take the Chinese paper during their IGCSE years and the majority move on to a bilingual IB Diploma.

      YCIS EAL/EIP SupportOur language programmes are conducive for students to receive support based on their varying language abilities. An example is providing support to students who have almost no experience learning English through the English Intensive Programme (EIP). This vigorous language programme is designed to help students move to the EAL and ultimately the highest level, EFL as soon as possible.

      Chinese CultureIn Primary, every student in Years 2-6 has a Chinese Studies lesson each week. The culture programme includes various areas: geography, history, literature, art, traditional festivals, technology and historical sites. We cultivate students to respect different cultures and establish multiple views through this programme. Exploring Beijing is a unique culture programme in Primary where students have the opportunity to explore the origins of local culture. The school provides different hands-on workshops for introducing Chinese culture in each year level.

      In Secondary, the same programme is offered and it is referred to as Chinese Studies, an integral part of their topics of learning.

      The Resources and Teaching MaterialsFor bilingual language learning to continue at all times, teachers make resources available easily for students to access when the need arises. Materials vary from our book filled Primary and Secondary libraries to online resources such as iLearnChinese.

      Learning CelebrationsAt the end of each study unit, students are encouraged to showcase what they have learnt to an audience made up of their teachers, parents and fellow school mates. Learning Celebrations are presented in various forms, such as poetry reading, drama, project display, etc.

      China Classroom Programme and Experiencing ChinaChina Classroom Programme and Experiencing China trips are a unique way in which students can further learn about and understand the world in which we live. Students can build a connection between diverse personal experiences, from different eras and regions, and broaden their life experience, cultivate a habit of independent thinking and independent judgement. Previous excursions included a trip to Huangshan, Shanxi, Dunhuang, Hangzhou, Yunnan, Inner Mongolia and many others around China.

      The E-Learning MethodDuring this period of e-learning, co-teaching and co-learning have continued with teachers adapting their material to the virtual method. During Chinese Class students were allocated 30 minutes each day for reading, writing and speaking (50 minutes in Secondary). E-learning has fostered independence amongst students and developed a new sense of autonomy.

      The unique nature of our programme ensures that our students are in a bilingual and bicultural environment from ECE to Secondary which results in them meeting qualities that will make them exemplary students listed in our Mission Principles and Practices.