Many studies have proven the benefits of a bilingual education. Fluency in multiple languages is not only a valuable asset but can help with a greater appreciation of different cultures. With the rising popularity of the Mandarin language both socially and in business, Stamford American has developed its innovative, research-based approach for our bilingual classes.
Students interested in dedicating more time and effort into learning Mandarin as a second language can join the Bilingual Program at no extra cost. This program gives learners equal exposure to the English and Mandarin languages in the subjects and concepts taught within their grade. Classes are taught by bilingual teachers who are masters of both languages, and with extensive experience in teaching in a bilingual environment.
WHY CHOOSE OUR BILINGUAL PROGRAM
Our unique one-bilingual-teacher model offers an approach where our bilingual teachers and teaching assistants are fluent in both languages and demonstrate bilingualism as role models to the students. At the same time, a single bilingual teacher model ensures the seamless transition during learning and provides the opportunity to explore content more deeply in both languages. This allows for learning experiences to be more adaptive and supports student-led inquiry. Bilingual learners need to feel a deep sense of belonging to take risks and make mistakes. Our one-bilingual-teacher approach builds trusting relationships between students and teachers.
Our program is offered from Pre-K to Grade 5 and in our bilingual program, students learn the same content as students in mainstream classes. The main difference is that 50% of the content in Math and Units of Inquiry (UOI) is delivered in Mandarin.
Our model provides a more immersive exposure to Mandarin to help students learn. To ensure continuity of curriculum programming, teachers regularly collaborate with their grade level colleagues to design lessons and share in best instructional and assessment practices.
The Bilingual Program teachers also consistently meet with the Mandarin teacher to ensure consistent language development in Mandarin, both within homeroom and the language block.
Students from USA, Australia, France, Japan, Korea, Singapore, India, China, Canada, UK, New Zealand and all over the world make up the nationality mix in a bilingual class.
Our program is offered from Pre-K to Grade 5. The Bilingual Program teacher plans together with the other class teachers of the grade level to cover the same concepts and achieve the same student learning objectives as the regular classes.
Both divisions follow the guidelines of the American Council of Teaching Foreign Languages (ACTFL). Lessons in Grades 1-5 are delivered using the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP) framework, while Pre-K and Kindergarten follow the research-based GOLD standards.
WHAT A TYPICAL DAY LOOKS LIKE IN THE PRE-K - KG2 BILINGUAL CLASS
- Using Mandarin during morning circle, transitions, and meal times
- Learning numbers and math concepts in both English and Mandarin and focus on problem solving and reasoning
- Learning Chinese character writing
- In KG1, we build our phonological awareness and learn the concept of print. In KG2, we develop reading and writing skills through the Readers and Writers Workshop model
- We celebrate and appreciate Chinese culture through reading stories, songs, dance and arts and crafts
HERE'S A SNEAK PEEK OF A STANDARD DAY!
WHAT A TYPICAL DAY LOOKS LIKE IN THE GRADE 1 - GRADE 5 BILINGUAL CLASS
- Focusing on listening, speaking, reading, writing and presentation skills through the Readers and Writers Workshop model
- Following the American Council of Teaching Foreign Languages (ACTFL) guidelines
- 50% of Math and 50% of Units of Inquiry are delivered in Mandarin
- Mandarin classroom instruction includes: Morning Meetings, calendars, lunch time, read aloud and transitions
HERE'S A SNEAK PEEK OF A STANDARD DAY!
For Pre-K to Grade 1, entry requirements are based on parent/student interest and a successful completion of the application process. No previous Mandarin knowledge is required. Students joining in Pre-K and KG1 are generally native (or near native) speakers of English.
From Grade 2 onwards, students must complete a Mandarin placement test to ensure they meet the linguistic expectations of the program.
For the purpose of consistency, all students in the Bilingual Program take Mandarin during their foreign language block. In the Bilingual Program, the foreign language Mandarin class includes an additional component of supporting students through the acquisition of the Mandarin vocabulary needed in order to successfully meet all expectations in the UOI class.
ASSESSMENT AND GRADING
Teachers use many strategies to make the content understandable, such as visuals, props, manipulatives, facial expressions, gestures, physical movements and many other instructional techniques. The teachers also repeat vocabulary and concepts and always check for understanding.
Our teachers do not expect your child to speak the second language right away. Students are not forced to speak the second language; they are initially allowed to speak English. The teacher will restate what your child says to reinforce connection between Mandarin and English vocabulary or vice versa.
Our bilingual classes are assessed through placement tests, internal assessments, and STAMP language proficiency test developed by the University of Oregon (starting in Grade 3). All these assessments focus on evaluating proficiency in the four language domains of reading, listening, speaking and writing.
BILINGUAL PROGRAM BROCHURE
You may view and download the Bilingual Program brochure at our Content Hub.