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Spotlight On Curriculum: Mandarin

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Being able to speak additional languages offers adults a significant advantage as they progress through their careers, and it makes sense that learning the second most widely spoken language in the world gives the biggest advantage. That’s just one of the reasons why we teach Mandarin at Conifers School – there are plenty more benefits for children who are destined for great things.

What Are The Benefits Of Learning Mandarin?

In our ever-connected world, knowing how to speak different languages offers a distinct advantage over those who can only speak English. With China being the global economic powerhouse that it is, and Mandarin being the second most widely spoken language globally, learning it at a young age allows children to have an edge over their peers who do not speak it as they move into the workforce.

Learning Mandarin provides students with a deeper understanding of Chinese culture, history, and traditions. It fosters cultural awareness and global competence, preparing them to navigate an increasingly interconnected world. Mandarin is spoken by over a billion people worldwide, so it is an invaluable language for international communication. Acquiring Mandarin language skills opens doors to meaningful interactions and opportunities, both within and outside of China. Further to that, with so many Chinese students attending top UK universities, speaking Mandarin allows children to make valuable connections for their future while they are studying.

Studies have shown that learning a second language, such as Mandarin, can improve cognitive functions like problem-solving, critical thinking, and creativity. It challenges the brain and enhances mental agility, which can improve performance in other subjects too. Indeed, learning Mandarin has been linked to improved academic performance, and it enhances language skills, which can have a positive impact on literacy and overall academic achievement.

Mandarin is an essential language in today’s global job market. Proficiency in Mandarin can significantly enhance a child’s career prospects, particularly in fields related to international business, diplomacy, and trade.

Learning Mandarin promotes empathy and cross-cultural understanding. Naturally, we teach about Chinese traditions and customs as we teach the language, which helps students appreciate the perspectives and experiences of Chinese-speaking communities, increasing tolerance and respect for diversity.

Proficiency in Mandarin opens the door to travel, study abroad programs, and cultural exchanges in Chinese-speaking countries. It allows students to immerse themselves in the language and culture first-hand, which enhances their opportunities when entering the workforce.

Learning a challenging language like Mandarin can be personally rewarding. It builds resilience, determination, and a sense of accomplishment as students overcome linguistic hurdles and achieve fluency. Speaking Mandarin is a skill that stays with students for life. Once acquired, it can be used in various personal and professional contexts, enriching their lives and broadening their horizons.

Who Teaches Mandarin At Conifers?

Mrs Keville is our dedicated Mandarin teacher at Conifers, and loves teaching our children the language, and the diverse culture that China presents.  

What Other Languages Are Taught At Conifers?

Spanish and French are taught at Conifers, and if your child is already learning a different language, then we encourage their development; we can arrange tuition to maintain their progress.

Is There Extra Support For Modern Foreign Languages At Conifers?

Of course. Where children particularly enjoy their learning languages and want to take their studies further, they can take part in after school activities such as clubs, and make use of our teaching facilities to continue to build their ability. For children that learning additional languages doesn’t come naturally, we can provide additional activities to help them enjoy the process of learning, rather than the vocabulary being forced onto them. Apps to support their learning can be extremely beneficial, and we find that a lot of children use these at home to improve their ability – the gamification of learning can be very powerful here. In addition, we can arrange for extra tuition to be built into their day, or we can recommend local tutors for you to engage with.  

At Conifers School, we are proud to offer Mandarin as part of our modern foreign languages program. Our dedicated teachers and specialists ensure that students receive a well-rounded education in Mandarin, equipping them with the linguistic and cultural skills they need to thrive in global markets and the workforce.

Learning Mandarin is not just about acquiring a language; it is about embracing a culture and preparing our students to be global citizens who can communicate and collaborate with people from diverse backgrounds. We consider it to be an investment in their future, empowering them with the skills and knowledge to navigate an ever-changing world with confidence and cultural sensitivity.

Want to know more about Modern Foreign Languages at Conifers, or have a discussion about your child’s specific needs? Mrs Morgan is the Head of Modern Foreign Languages, and you’re invited to get in touch, or come and visit us on an open event, or for a private tour to find out more. 

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