My students live in East Palo Alto, Redwood City, San Mateo, San Carlos, and Belmont. They come from various social-economic backgrounds.
My students are taking on the challenge of learning a completely different language: Chinese, in an area where Spanish is the dominating world language.
My students come in every day with high energy and eager to learn. They often comment that this is the class they look forward to every day because it is fun and full of laughter. It is very important for my students to have fun while learning such a different and challenging language.
Creative and fun activities are an integral part of our lessons to provide students the opportunity to "Shine" through their creative works! We utilize many tools, such as flashcards, whiteboards, whiteboard markers and erasers, poster papers, scratch papers for learning activities, as well as color markers, crayons, glue sticks, scissors, and other materials for creative activities.
When learning a language, applying their learned knowledge and skills is key to retention. However, there are very few age-appropriate beginning level reading materials for high school students who are studying Chinese. Many times the beginning level reading books are just children's book from the target language, so they are too childish for high school students.
Reading for pleasure in a challenging language like Chinese is so important for the students to practice, refresh, and retain what they have learned in the classroom.
I spoke with teachers who used these books, as well as observing how high school students in their first year of studying Chinese were engaged with these books! In addition to enjoying reading these books, the students were also trying to make educated guesses about words they did not know! I am excited to find these books that I believe my students will enjoy.
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