Local WI School to possibly start teaching in Chinese 50% of the time

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by pugman, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. pugman

    pugman

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    http://www.channel3000.com/education/22260839/detail.html

    Verona School Board To Vote On Proposed Charter School
    Vote Scheduled At Monday Board Meeting
    Updated: 10:37 am CST January 18, 2010

    VERONA, Wis. -- The Verona Area School District Board of Education will vote on adding a third charter school to its district on Monday night.

    The proposed school would offer the state's first Mandarin Chinese for a language immersion program. The program would consist of one class to start with. That class would enroll kidnergartners and first-graders, who would spend half their days learning in Chinese and the other half learning in English.

    The school would open in the fall of 2010.

    The board meeting is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. on Monday.


    The GT Brain trust thoughts?

    Obviously, the best way to learn a language is to grow up with it. If you were a parent, would you take advantage of this?

    We lived in the area for 10 years and most families in Verona are in the upper/middle class or lower/upper class bracklets. Kids are generally nice and they do very well on SAT scores coming out of high school. Like many of Madison, WI suburbs I would label it "affluent." While you can't sterotype and say kids in this area succeed in life-I would be surprised if they didn't.

    Of course, someone will say this is all part of the Obama agenda..but I have some serious questions. I used to live in this district and if I still did I would be asking:

    I know at the K and 1st grade levels kids generally don't "fail"; but if a child is doing well at the English portion of the class and not so well at the Chinese..can he be held back? What about if this was say 8th grade? Considering its half the class, could you imagine telling GT'ers or your coworkers..."my kid aced English, but did poorly at Chinese so they are holding him back a year?"

    I know and embrace the world economy and realize as America seems to be failing, the Chinese for years have bulldozed their way into the manufacturing forefront...although mostly through cheap electronics and plastic vomit (or is that Hong Kong?:supergrin:). Parents enrolling their kids in this could be looking at that future.

    Your thoughts?
     
  2. kestrou

    kestrou Pin Member #4

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    I go to lots of local high schools and do presentations about "Careers in Engineering and Technology" - and one of the things I talk to kids about is "putting arrows in your quiver".

    You never know what life skills you might need at some point in the future, so if an opportunity comes up to add an ability to yourself then TAKE IT!

    I lived in Japan for three years in the early 90s and thus had an excellent opportunity to learn the language and culture. By no means required to, but figured it was a amazing opportunity so I did.

    Now, 15+ years later, I support multiple Japanese clients that I would not have without having picked up that skill.

    So, yes, I wholeheartedly support the initiative above - as long as it's an "elective" to those that participate. :thumbsup:

    kestrou
     

  3. jtmac

    jtmac Señor Member

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    My first thought is the worry that parts of the curriculum could suffer due to being in a foreign language... but the fact is that the majority of most schooldays could be compressed by at LEAST half for the average kid.

    It's a phenomenal opportunity. I'm sure more people will turn down the idea simply because of the choice of language, but it's a near-ideal choice. Chinese is at the total opposite of the linguistic structure circle, and immersion in such a different language is the best option to raise efficient, flexible language learners. Whether some one sees China as friend or ally, learning their language is the best tool we have going forward.

    That said, I haven't studied Chinese, myself.... yet. Chinese study, for me, will come after I've improved my Japanese to the point that adding another language won't slow down my current studying.
     
  4. ateamer

    ateamer NRA4EVR

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    Our schools need to concentrate on the basics. The lack of writing and speaking skills in most people who have graduated in the last 10-15 years is deplorable.
     
  5. AZson

    AZson

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    Better then spanish
     
  6. Annoyedgrunt

    Annoyedgrunt Dry Heat my ASS

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    Your crazy! Our English skills is just fine! :wavey:
     
  7. Bado

    Bado

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    I think it is a great idea.
     
  8. winchester62

    winchester62

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    Wish they did this near me. I would absolutely send my kids there. Very important for the future business world. As long as it's an elective, I'm all for it.
     
  9. pugman

    pugman

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    There is my concern.

    Its Kindergarden and 1st graders...ask them to take just about anything and they will say yes (which granted is part of the genius behind it)

    And I noticed the school system never did it back in the 80's when it looked as if the Japanese would rule the world...and why not German..or Japanese?

    I agree multi-lingual kids probably are more likely to succeed....
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2010
  10. The Machinist

    The Machinist Please! Please! No more!

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    I say until the government-run school system can start actually teaching English, they shouldn't be wasting their time on teaching Chinese.
     
  11. raven11

    raven11

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    meh , my high school required you take a foreign class either French , Spanish , or German


    but all the high school grads i met don't remember a single word of it
     
  12. bob_fuller

    bob_fuller

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    I think they should focus more on the English part of things :supergrin:
     
  13. madcitycop

    madcitycop

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    Other than Shorewood Hills and Maple Bluff I would hardly consider the other Madison suburbs "affluent".

    Immersion is key and why not? Our kids need more culture and I think have heard of studies that say that bi lingual children are better learners (paraphrased of course :) )
     
  14. nursetim

    nursetim

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    I'd take it a step further. K-4, when the kids are like sponges, would be 1 yr each; Mandarin, Japanese, German, and French immersion. Spanish is somewhat easier to grasp than the first For sure as it is tonal, I had trouble with the second and third and French is Latin based so a LITTLE easier than the first three.

    To get back to the question at hand, I think it is a GREAT idea, If you do not like it, do not send your children to that school, it as easy as that.
     
  15. DScottHewitt

    DScottHewitt EMT-B

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    They are just getting ready. China has a new tank on the horizon with a sixbarreled railgun, self-healing armor, and some kind of third thing.
     
  16. cgwahl

    cgwahl Sheriffs a near

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    If I were a parent I'd take advantage of it. Heck, I'm teaching myself Mandarin now off and on. Mostly cause I can't roll my R's for Spanish, but also cause I think it'd be useful to know a language used by so many people.
     
  17. shavedape

    shavedape

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    [Back at the Costanzas'. Still daylight.]

    ESTELLE

    You're not Chinese!?!?

    DONNA

    [pause] No.

    ESTELLE

    I thought you were Chinese!!

    DONNA

    I'm from Long Island.

    ESTELLE

    Long Island?!?!

    I thought I was gettin' advice from a Chinese woman!!

    DONNA

    I'm sorry..?

    ESTELLE

    Well! Then, that changes everything!

    GEORGE

    What?!

    ESTELLE

    She's not Chinese; I was duped!!

    GEORGE

    So what?! She gave you advice; what's the difference if she's not
    Chinese?!?!

    ESTELLE

    I'm not taking advice from some girl from Long Island!! [goes into

    kitchen]

    GEORGE

    [chases her] Wait a minute! You're--now you're getting a divorce because

    she's from Long Island?!?!

    FRANK

    [from the living room, standing, shouts after them] You want a

    divorce?!!? You got one!!!

    JERRY

    [pause, to DONNA] You know, you might wanna think about changin' your

    name..
     
  18. MedicOni

    MedicOni

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    Firefly universe here we come!
     
  19. jtmac

    jtmac Señor Member

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    OK, any one that complains about Chinese: How about Esperanto?