Modern Foreign Language - Mandarin
At Harris Primary Academy East Dulwich we believe it is important all children are given the opportunity to learn a foreign language. Our chosen language is Mandarin.
The National Curriculum expectation for MFL is that all pupils learn one language from Year 3. Here at HPAD, pupils are given a head-start, with weekly Mandarin lessons beginning in Reception.
Although there are many stereotypes of Chinese being very difficult to learn, our students enjoy the challenge of writing characters and mastering pronunciation with the support of a Mandarin Specialist Teacher. Their Mandarin lessons not only equip them with the knowledge and understanding to communicate in the most widely-spoken world language, but also increase their intercultural understanding by seeing things from another’s perspective, giving them insight into the people and traditions of other cultures. We believe that this is essential when developing global citizens.
In Reception, children have a short Mandarin lesson based around songs and rhymes.
In Key Stage 1, children’s learning is based around songs, rhymes and games. Through this, children start to hear the different sounds that occur in Mandarin and feel confident using key words and phrases. They begin to learn basic components of Chinese characters and start their journey towards reading and writing in another language.
In Key Stage 2, pupils are encouraged to practise writing characters regularly and will be given the opportunity to practise their speaking and listening. Pupils who begin Mandarin in Year 1, should be able to understand around 100 characters by Year 5 - in line with the internationally recognised Youth Chinese Test.
Children who have achieved the required standard in Mandarin in Year 5 will be entered for the internationally used Youth Chinese Test (YCT).