Since we're in Singapore, it's only fitting that Linna take some fun Mandarin classes, as Mandarin Chinese is spoken by many people who live here. We enrolled Linna in a few classes at the Chengzhu Mandarin Centre of the Julia Gabriel School, located in the Rochester Mall. It's just a quick MRT ride there and back, and well worth the trip!
|Art project time.|
Our classes are on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and they last about an hour and a half. They ONLY speak Mandarin Chinese in these classes, which not only helps Linna learn, but I picked up on some things as well. There's music, dancing, play time, snack time, art projects, and of course playing with other children. Some of the children speak only Mandarin, while others speak a little Mandarin, some English, and other languages as well.
The teachers (or "Laoshi" in Mandarin) are so animated, and play very closely with the children. They do a great job showing an object or demonstrating a movement, then saying the Mandarin word very clearly for the children to understand. I learned how to say "hello" (ni hao), "thank you" (xie xie - pronounced "she she"), and "monkey" (houzi) during our classes so far!
|Linna's first art project at Chengzhu.|
We especially love the theatre performances that the teaches do in class. The Chengzhu Mandarin Centre's objective is to motivate students to express themselves at their best, and theatre plays a big part in this. Linna was glued to each and every performance in our classroom!
The teachers also lead the children in songs and dance, and even have a live keyboard player, which all the children flock to. Linna literally rocks out during this time in class! The girl loves to dance.
The school provides a snack and juice/water at the end of class, which is most of the kids' favorite part of the afternoon. We always go home with one of Linna's art projects, which we proudly post on our refrigerator in Singapore. This school also has SO Many fun toys! It's just like our ECFE classes in Minnesota, where all the toys are brand new for each child, so they could play for hours.
If we were in Singapore for a longer period of time, I would register Linna for these PlayNest classes. Linna is having a blast and has met other children from all around the world. I wonder if she's actually absorbing the information she's being taught.
Two Minnesota mommy and baby thumbs up for the Chengzhu Mandarin Centre!