Approximately over 15 percent of the world’s population speaks Chinese, that’s more than Spanish, English, French, and German combined! However, Chinese is also one of the most difficult languages to learn because unlike most commonly spoken languages the Chinese language does not constitute of segmental letters, rather is a collection of over 20,000 distinct characters. In Singapore where most people speak English daily, it is particularly challenging to get your children to see the importance of learning Chinese.
While this may seem daunting to any adult, young minds are much more capable of learning new languages. Popular books such as The Bilingual Edge (King & Mackey, 2009), have pointed out the potential advantage bilingual or multilingual children have over monolingual youngsters. Firstly, there is the obvious linguistic benefits, bilingual or multilingual children may find it easier to travel, find employment, speak with members of the extended family, and maintain a stronger connection with family culture and history. However, beyond the obvious benefits of studies such as Bialystok & Senman (2004) have suggested that bilingual or multilingual preschoolers seem to have relatively better skills than their monolingual mates and understanding others’ perspectives, thoughts, desires, and intentions. In other words, these children have more enhanced social skills. Another study by Bialstok et al (2012) shows that bilingual children have some cognitive advantages as well. These children appear to perform better than their monolingual peers on tasks that involve switching between activities and inhibiting previously learned responses.
Now that we have discussed the benefits of learning more than one language, knowing how difficult it is for Singaporean parents to keep their young ones engaged in any single activity unless it’s on the television and smartphone, we should discuss some fun ways here in our very own Singapore for children to learn Chinese vocabulary.
We have compiled a list of fun-filled learning activities for children and parents to do together and the best part about these is that they can be done with supplies you already have at home. These activities have been divided into 3 categories so that you can incorporate your child’s interests as best as possible. These are Listening/Speaking, Reading, and Writing activities.
Fun-filled Speaking/Listening activities for Kids in Singapore:
Fun-filled Reading activities for Chinese learning in Singapore:
For kids who are not yet reading, you can adjust this into a speaking game by shining a light on objects that you identify!
Fun-filled Writing activities for Kids in Singapore:
If you’re too occupied with your work and daily errands to get your children started on the journey, you can seek external help by signing up for Chinese Enrichment Class for them. Hunting for a reliable education center that provides engaging Chinese Enrichment Class is essential because you do not want your children to get off on the wrong foot. If your child is still a young kid of age 3-9, it is best to send him/her to an enrichment class led by experienced and passionate tutors. The objective of a good enrichment class is to cultivate the students’ interest in learning Chinese, and not to learn as many bombastic vocab as possible. There are only a few education centres that offer fun, engaging enrichment classes with curated interactive activities and one of them is Le Xue Education.
Le Xue’s philosophy “Joyful Learning While Mastering the Intricacies of the Chinese Language“ , broadens the horizon of the approach in teaching the Chinese Language, utilizing a variety of methods which has been proven to aid in the improvements of her students’ listening, speaking, reading and writing. We believe that by starting young with the right methods, a more receptive and comprehensive introduction of the Chinese Language will be introduced into the lives of children.
If you would like to experience our proprietary 3R teaching method that has helped students to fall in love with Chinese and learn 5x faster, you can sign up for a FREE trial lesson here!
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