Like it or Not?

On the last Friday, our CLCC enjoyed their time reviewing expressions “I like – .”, “I don’t like – .” and “Do you like – ?” They also used these Chinese expressions to share their preferences upon many topics we went through together in this term.

Zhao Laoshi is reviewing vocabulary they have learned so far in this term, including colors, classical Chinese food, sports, shapes.

See the lovely kids are holding sign to express their attitude on the stuff they hear from the teacher.

Delicious Tour around China

On the last Friday, the 2017 Fall Chinese Club kids took another amazing trip around the East, West, South, North and Central parts of China. What made this trip special and spectacular was that students got the chance to make and taste the most original and popular food in the five areas. Look at the pictures and see how much fun they had.


The food the kids learned and made include Beijing Roasted Duck, Chongqing hot pot, Cantonese Dim Sum, Shandong seafood and Henan noodle.











Please stick to our blog and expect more wonderful Chinese classes in the upcoming weeks.

Hello, Chinese Club!

Dear students and parents at Edison School,

Happy new term. Our Chinese Club is going to begin (again) this Friday on Sep 29th!
Our Chinese (Mandarin) teachers this year are Krystal Lyau, Adam Li, and Reeya Zhao who are all graduate students of Language Teaching Studies, Linguistics. We would also like to introduce you our advisor of CLCC, Lara Ravitch who is an expert in language teaching for young learners.

Please contact Lara Ravitch at if you have not registered for our club but would like to.

We all warmly welcome you! 热烈欢迎每一位小朋友!

Chinese Cartoons!

Welcome back, our lovely students! This is the first post of Spring Term. In this week, we talked about Chinese Cartoons. We had a lot of sections in the class. First, the teachers showed 6 different posters of cartoons, and let students guess which two cartoons were produced in China. Students also explained why they picked the two cartoons.


Second, we introduced 4 different Chinese cartoons in class, two of them were very popular when the two Chinese teachers were children and others are the most popular cartoons in China right now. Then, the teacher showed three scripts of different cartoons that we just learned in class. Each group would pick up one of them, practice the scripts with their partners in groups, and then act them out in the whole class. Our students had to do self character introduction in Chinese in the activity!  Look! They are working very hard to play their roles:)

The last section was creating cartoons. We hoped our students could use what they learned from this Chinese class to create their own cartoons. Yes! They did it! Some of them wrote Chinese characters in their cartoons, and some of them drew some of the characters that they played in the last activity.


In the end, if students wanted, they could do a short presentation of their own cartoon in Chinese! Look! There is a student is producing his own “黑猫警长 (Black Cat Sheriff)”! Wonderful!


Thank you so much! Please keep studying Chinese!


Frogs Jump

For the last class of this term, we played a game, “frogs jump.” When we played the game in class, we reviewed a couple of key points that we learned a few weeks ago. For example, how many frogs in our classroom? Students counted those frogs in Chinese, such as 一(one), 二(two), 三(three)… 十一(eleven) and 十二(twelve).

And then, we also learned how to say four body parts in Chinese, such as 鼻子(nose), 眼睛(eyes), 嘴(mouth) and 腿(legs). When teacher said a body part, students showed teacher by pointing at. Look! They did very well:) They loved the activity so much!

鼻子(nose)                                                                          眼睛(eyes)


Such a wonderful class! Our Children are smart and hard work, we are very appreciate that!

Thank you everyone! Hope you could keep studying Chinese next term! 谢谢!

What did we learn last week?! Yes~ Chinese Dynasties

This week, every child had a time-machine because we went to ancient Chinese. There were 7  Chinese dynasties we learned in class, which were 秦(Qin), 汉(Han), 唐(Tang), 宋(Song), 元(Yuan), 明(Ming), 清(Qing).

We did a match game: teacher randomly says one Chinese dynasty, and then students choose the flashcard (name of Chinese dynasties and Pinyin) that teacher just says. After that, every child wore a crown, and he/she would be the king or queen of the dynasty. They really loved those crowns!


Be a king/ queen is a not easy thing, our students had a hard task!!! But, they did very well! Students introduced the name of their own dynasty and three secrets that happened in that dynasties to other classmates. After they were done, they could switch their dynasties’ clothing style card to each other. Such as:

the clothing style of 秦(Qin Dynasty) & the clothing style of 汉(Han Dynasty)


In the end, our students practiced writing different categories of Chinese characters, such as

They really loved it! I believed they were enjoy learning Chinese.

Wow! Chinese Buzzword

Today, we had a very cool Chinese class, which was learning Chinese buzzword. We learned 6 very popular Chinese Buzzword, which were “葛优躺”, “吓死宝宝了”, “有点方”, “蓝瘦香菇”, “吃土” and “也是醉了”. After students got the meanings of those buzzwords, they created six pictures to explain them. Those pictures were perfect. Some students also added cartoon elements to make their six pictures become vivid.

After students complete their six pictures of Chinese buzzword, they listened a couple of  short stories. At the same time, they would figure out which picture that they draw matched the story.


They really loved the activity. This was a very creative Chinese class! Thank you everyone:)

Wonderful Storydancing Chinese Class

We had a special guest teacher, Cindy Chan, came to our last CLCC class. She is a movement integration specialist, so she lead us to have a wonderful storydancing Chinese class.

In the class, we read a Chinese book together, which was “你一半,我一半.” We learned sharing, such as how we share our good news with our friends and how we share food with our parents. We also did some exercises to let our students deeply understand sharing, such as we did “chopsticks activity,” and “big umbrella activity.”

This is our “Chopsticks Activity.” Students use a chopstick to share strength. If you push too much, your chopstick will fall down. Thus, students discuss with their group members, and let their chopstick keep stay between their fingers.


This is “Big Umbrella Activity.”


That was a wonderful and fun Chinese class! Thank you Chan LaoShi:)

How Mandarin can unlock our children’s potential in an increasingly connected world

Written by: MARK HERBERT, Retrieved from:

With over one billion speakers worldwide, the global significance of Mandarin Chinese cannot be denied. But with the continued growth of English as a lingua franca of business, travel and international relations, do we really need more young people in the UK to learn it?

The reality is that, at a time when the UK is repositioning itself on the world stage, young people across the UK need to have the knowledge and skills to unlock their potential in an increasingly connected world – and to my mind at least, there are few abilities more valuable than speaking Mandarin Chinese.

The good news is that parents across the UK seem to think so too. Research released last week as part of the Mandarin Excellence Programme highlighted that those with children aged under 18 see Mandarin Chinese as the ‘most beneficial’ non-European language for their children’s future – followed by Arabic and Japanese. As well as 51 per cent of those surveyed believing that speaking Mandarin would boost their children’s career prospects, 56 per cent saw it as a skill that would open their children’s minds to an ‘exciting and dynamic culture’.

Secondary school student reading out loud in classroom

But are parents correct in thinking that Mandarin Chinese will prove fruitful for their children’s futures? What are the advantages of being able to speak and understand this particular language?

For starters, there are many personal advantages that speaking another language can bring. What we so often forget as a mostly monolingual nation is that languages are essential for our trade, prosperity, cultural exports, diplomacy and national security. So for those who do decide to learn a language, there are many rewards to be reaped, particularly when it comes to boosting individual job prospects. Successive surveys of businesses that already work internationally or want to expand into other markets indicate that having employees who are familiar with the language and culture of the place they want to do business, is an important advantage, if not essential.

And if we look at Mandarin Chinese specifically, parents are correct in their belief that it is one of the most important languages for our young people to learn. Not only is it the language of the world’s second biggest economy, research by the CBI just last year showed that 28 per cent of almost 500 British companies rate Mandarin Chinese as being useful to their business. So with less than one per cent of the UK population currently able to hold a conversation in it, for those who do speak Mandarin Chinese, it provides a standout skill in a competitive job market.

More than that, learning another language is a great way to connect with another country – to quote the late Nelson Mandela: ‘If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.’ And if we want to build the kind of trust with people from other countries that underpins any kind of meaningful relationship – it is hearts that we need to be talking to, not just heads.

Learning a language doesn’t simply allow you to speak different words but to open up to and understand different cultures. This is more important than ever for the UKs place in the world. And again, parents are certainly not wrong in their thinking that learning Mandarin will open up their children’s minds to a ‘dynamic’ and ‘exciting’ culture – China is a fascinating country with much to offer young Britons who choose to take on Mandarin Chinese.

That said, the reality is that the number of UK school pupils studying Mandarin Chinese is low when compared to languages such as French, German and Spanish. Last year, for example, approximately 140,000 young people sat a GCSE in French while only around 4,000 took one in Mandarin Chinese. And while it’s important to note that uptake is steadily rising, how do we get even more young people speaking this important language?

Good work by individual schools, a number of universities, the network of Confucius Institutes and Classrooms, corporates such as HSBC and Swire have all contributed to the growth of Mandarin over the last ten years.  However for a school to choose to teach Mandarin it needs to match supply and demand. Do enough students and parents want Mandarin to be taught given the time commitment needed to get good grades? Can the school afford and recruit a high quality Mandarin teacher over and above their French, Spanish or German teachers, particularly if the numbers of students wanting to learn Mandarin are low, at least initially?

In England the Department for Education’s new Mandarin Excellence Programme aims to respond to schools’ need for more teachers and support to get a robust Mandarin Chinese programme under way.

Launched in September last year, the programme will see at least 5,000 school pupils in England on track towards fluency in Mandarin Chinese by 2020. Participating schools are at the forefront of delivering the programme with pupils on it studying the language for an average of eight hours a week – a significant increase on the one to two hours per week that most Year 7 secondary pupils tend to spend on foreign languages. Headteachers and teachers in the fourteen schools who joined the first year of the scheme have reported that they are pleased that rather than being daunted by an intensive programme of Mandarin, the children are energised by studying a subject which opens up new possibilities.

Admittedly I have a particular interest in this as the British Council and UCL Institute of Education (IOE) are partners in delivering the Mandarin Excellence Programme on behalf of the Department for Education.  However, whether we had been asked to operate the scheme or not, we would have been completely supportive. Why? Because at the heart of the British Council’s mission is to build mutually beneficial relationships between the UK and other countries. So just as millions of Chinese are learning English, and tens of thousands study at our universities, we need many more young people here to be learning Mandarin if our two countries are going to trade and cooperate together internationally.

In the short term, the flow of business and investment may seem like it matters most but in the long term it is the web of institutional, corporate and people-to-people connections that will ensure that UK-China relations continue to thrive.  For all of these reasons, Mandarin is undoubtedly a language which can help to unlock our children’s potential in an increasingly connected world.

Mark Herbert is the Head of Schools Programme for The British Council

Happy New Year

In the last Chinese class this year, our lovely students already learned a lot of Chinese characters and Chinese culture. First, Our students made a beautiful calendar to explain 6 things that Chinese people need to do before Chinese New Year. They knew Chinese culture!

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And then, our students learned 5 different Chinese idioms to wish their friends and families have a great new year, which were 新年快乐(Happy New Year);身体健康(May You Keep in Good Health);恭喜发财(Hope You are Prosperous) and 吉祥如意 (May Everything Goes as You Wish). They learned Chinese characters!

In the end, we invited our students’ parents to join in us and celebrated the new year. Our students said the Chinese idioms that they learned from class to their parents, and we ate dumplings to enjoyed the happy moment. Such a wonderful class!!

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