News

Knowing another language boosts other areas of your child’s learning


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Speakers of the majority language who learn another language at school accrue a number of benefits (Baker 2012). Importantly, there is evidence suggesting that learning another language at school improves performance across the curriculum.

For example:

  • Students have been shown to perform better in mathematics and their first language in standardised tests after language instruction three times a week (Armstrong & Rogers 1997).

  • Garfinkel & Tabor (1991) found that students studying one or two years of a second language (Spanish) outperformed those not studying a second language in primary language reading tests (English).

  • A large study concluded that students who studied foreign languages for longer periods of time did better on American Scholastic Achievement Tests than students who studied less foreign language. In this study, the variables of verbal giftedness and socioeconomic background were controlled (Cooper 1987).

  • Learning another language improves the speed and level of intercultural skill acquisition in students (Byram 2012).

Taken from The Royal Society of New Zealand’s Languages in Aotearoa New Zealand paper, March 2013.

News

Supporting language development – it’s like coaching sports!


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Teaching and supporting students’ language development is like coaching a sport. The students are the ones running around with the ball – reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and presenting – “doing” language. The teacher, as “language coach”, has the job of analysing and assessing what the students can do right now, establishing what they need to be able to do, and finding strategies for teaching them those skills. Students need plenty of practice with each skill, and they need to be able to put the skills together into a whole game – that of language use and interaction in relation to curriculum learning.

Wise words from the Ministry of Education’s Pasifika Education Community LEAP resource!

News

Human Rights Commission: Languages in Aotearoa Statement on Language Policy


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New Zealand is a diverse society in a globalised international community. It has an indigenous language, te reo Māori, and a bicultural Māori and Anglo-Celtic foundation. It is located in the Asia Pacific region and many people from the Pacific and Asia have settled here. Languages are an important national resource in terms of our cultural identities, cultural diversity and international connectedness. They are vitally important for individuals and communities, bringing educational, social, cultural and economic benefits. They contribute to all three national priorities of national identity, economic transformation and families young and old…

…Economic Development: A significant and growing proportion of New Zealand’s trade is with Asia, and learning the languages of our key trading partners is an economic imperative.

Click here to read the Languages in Aotearoa Statement on Language Policy in full (it’s just 2 pages – an easy read!).

News

Mandarin Kids Club – what’s coming up next?


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Hey everyone, just letting you know what’s coming up at the Mandarin Kids Club, weekly Saturdays 10:30-11:30am!

Saturday 11 November Rhyme action game & Musical vocab Chairs Current enrolled class students FREEGeneral public $2 each.
Saturday 18 November Making noodles day & learning Chinese character writing for noodles Current enrolled class students $2 eachGeneral public $7 each.
Saturday 25 November Pictionary & Guess who Current enrolled class students FREEGeneral public $2 each.
Saturday 2 December Card games in Mandarin: Go fish & UNO Current enrolled class students FREEGeneral public $2 each.
Saturday 9 December Chinese paper cutting Current enrolled class students $2 eachGeneral public $5 each.

 

 

News, Weekly Handout

2017 Term 4 Preschoolers’ class week 5-6


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buy buy 再见 zài jiàn
thank you 谢谢 xiè xie
I want to buy… 我想要买… wǒ xiǎng yào mǎi…
in total five dollars 总共五块钱 zǒng gòng wǔ kuài qián
money qián
juice 果汁 guǒ zhī
dumplings 饺子 jiǎo zi
ice cream 冰淇淋 bīng qì lín
fired rice/ fired noodle 炒饭/炒面 chǎo fàn/chǎo miàn
cola 可乐 kě lè
fries 薯条 shǔ tiáo
hamburger 汉堡包 hàn bǎo bao
I am hungry 我饿了 wǒ èr le
What do you want to eat/drink? 你想吃/喝什么? nǐ xiǎng chī/hē shén me?
I want to eat/drink… 我想要吃/喝… wǒ xiǎng yào chī/hē …
News, Weekly Handout

2017 Term 4 Kids’ class week 5-6


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what is on the top of table? 桌子上有什么? zhuō zǐ shàng yǒu shén me?
there are…on the table 桌子上有… zhuō zǐ shàng yǒu …
I want to buy… 我想要买… wǒ xiǎng yào mǎi…
big
small xiǎo
sandwich 三明治 sān míng zhì
juice 果汁 guǒ zhī
dumplings 饺子 jiǎo zi
ice cream 冰淇淋 bīng qì lín
steamed bun 包子 bāo zi
cola 可乐 kě lè
fries 薯条 shǔ tiáo
hamburger 汉堡包 hàn bǎo bao
fired rice/ fired noodle 炒饭/炒面 chǎo fàn/chǎo miàn
what do you want to eat/drink? 你想吃/喝什么? nǐ xiǎng chī/hē shén me?
I want to eat/drink… 我想要吃/喝… wǒ xiǎng yào chī/hē …
News

Starting Strong: Nurturing the potential of our Asian under-fives


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The staff and I were fortunate to attend today’s launch of Asia NZ Foundation’s new report “Starting Strong: Starting Strong: Nurturing the potential of our Asian under-fives“. It was a good opportunity to meet others in an educational / early childhood / language space and hear about the report’s findings. All languages, not just Mandarin Chinese, are important and will be even more so in the future!

The report’s authors are Associate Professor Elsie Ho (University of Auckland), Vivian Cheung (National Advisor Asian Peoples for Plunket) and Dr Robert Didham (Statistics NZ, and also Waikato University research associate).

Did you know that in 2017, 18% of children under 5 were of Asian ethnicity, and people identifying with an Asian ethnicity make up the fastest-growing ethnic population in NZ?

Based on the research and Asia NZ Foundation’s own experience, the Foundation has listed these calls to action (which we at Ni Hao Children’s Community absolutely agree with):

  1. Recognising the benefits of having children with diverse languages and cultures growing up in NZ, and ensuring these cultural and language skills are not lost.
  2. There is widespread support for children speaking more than one language. A National Languages Policy would assist NZ to grow a languages culture. In the majority of countries around the world, children speak more than one language – so NZ is trailing behind.
  3.  Development of a ‘languages in education’ plan through engagement with the community, ensuring language pathways, targeted funding and developing a quality language teaching force.

Click here to read the report online / download the PDF at the Asia NZ Foundation.