We recognise the importance of language as the primary tool of communication across the globe, and we encourage the idea that all languages should be respected equally. We also believe in the enjoyment of the process of language-acquisition, and promote the realisation amongst our learners that it is a lifelong endeavour. Our students will come to see that learning languages is a life skill and not just an academic concern, a perspective that is important in a result-centred culture where academic achievement can take precedence over other issues.
The English and Chinese languages are of equal importance in this IB centre. Our centre’s main language of instruction is English, but this centre is unusual in that, unlike most international schools, we form part of a larger Chinese high school which uses the Chinese language for teaching and learning. Like the ‘main school’ students, all of our students’ mother-tongue is Chinese, and we will take advantage of this atypical situation by constantly encouraging students to draw comparisons between Chinese, Anglophone and other cultures through teaching methodology. In this way, it will be clear to our students that they are international IB learners, and, at the same time, they will be mindful that they are members of a Chinese high school.
Students will selected to participate in accordance with our admission's policy which will include the assessment of productive as well as receptive skills in the English language.
Students are required to study Group 1 Chinese and Group 2 English Language B. Those students opting to study a language that is not English or Chinese will have the opportunity to do so, if we are able to make the necessary arrangements for the him/her (by locating a teacher of that language). Students will then study a Standard or Higher course in accordance to their ability. In the future, non-Chinese nationals may join the centre; we would make every effort for them to study their mother tongue as their Group 1 language should they so desire.
Our language courses aim to:
· Enable students to learn and use languages effectively, appropriately, accurately, and confidently.
· Develop students’ powers of oral and written communication.
· Enable students to develop and use language skills in a variety of contexts and purposes.
· Promote the appreciation, understanding, and analysis of literature.
· Encourage students to explore language as a means to understand the differing perspectives. of people from other cultures.
· Provide an opportunity for enjoyment, creativity, and intellectual stimulation through knowledge of language and literature.
Language of Instruction: English
The primary language of instruction is English; this is because most of our learners will have higher education in an Anglophone country, or a place, like Hong Kong, where English is almost exclusively-used in tertiary education. Formative and summative in-house assessment will all be in English at this centre.
All subject teachers recognise their roles not just as subject teachers, but as EAL (English as an Additional Language) teachers. The teaching staff will strive to support their Chinese learners by encouraging them to become real communicators in the use of both written and spoken English during lessons, as well as providing concrete support in areas like subject-specific vocabulary.
Subject teachers will regularly liaise with the English teachers to address students’ English language needs. Teachers will also share good pedagogical practice concerning this issue, as we are aware this is an ongoing process from which we are all continually learning making this truly cross-curricular. Our students will be made aware from the outset that the acquisition of this language will make their time spent abroad in higher education, as well as (for most), living as a member of an Anglophone society, significantly more enjoyable and rewarding.
The students’ academic support website ‘Managebac’ and “Engrade”, subject textbooks and other learning resources are in English, and the library will contain a wide range English-language texts. Our IB learners are also permitted to use the main school library which also houses Englishlanguage
texts. In addition, online English resources can be accessed using either one of the two computer laboratories or the computers in the dedicated IB library.
Further support to his or her English language development will be given via a bi-lingual Chinese teacher in each subject.
In order for our learners to keep a sense of themselves as Chinese citizens who are of equal standing as all other nationalities in the world, the Chinese language will be treated with the same importance as English. For the Chinese Group 1 language learners, it will be their medium of communication primarily in the study and analysis of Chinese literature. In keeping with the need to promote internationalism and inter-cultural understanding, a variety of translated English-language texts will be studied in Group 1 lessons from the perspective of the Chinese culture.
The faculty will demonstrate at all times their respect for the Chinese language, and students will communicate in Chinese to their Chinese tutors and college counsellors. This will ensure those students maintain their native-speaker level. Students have access to the Chineselanguage texts available in the main school library where Chinese-speaking librarians are available to assist them, and they can access online Chinese resources in the computer laboratories.
Language and Culture
Culture and cultural identity are expressed most clearly through language, highlighting the need for fostering both English and the students’ mother tongue.
We very much wish to encourage in all learners the realisation that language permeates every area of life, and, for this reason, language learning will, as far as possible, be related to elements of culture. Over their time at the centre, students will learn about the customs and traditions of the Group 2 language they are learning in-lesson, and they will gain a richer, deeper sense of both Group 1 and 2 languages, and, also, for the Higher Level Language B students, through the analysis and appreciation of literature. Extra-curricular ‘culture’ activities will be accessed extensively via students' participation in a variety of CAS clubs.
Fiction and non-fiction texts in the library have been carefully chosen to encourage students to borrow books to read for pleasure, demonstrating to them that language-learning can take place out of the classroom, as well as be immensely enjoyable and fascinating. Through the consideration of other cultures through the medium of literature, learners will become more reflective, openminded and risk-taking; they will also, of course, improve their reading skills.
All teachers will link their subjects, as far as is possible, to cultural factors like festivals or subject-specific histories, a perspective that will be further encouraged during time spent considering Theory of Knowledge. Examples of whole-centre cross-cultural events that will take place are a ‘Halloween Celebration’ and the holding of a Christmas bazaar and concert.
Consequently, in a concrete, memorable and enjoyable way, learners will have real-life experiences of the traditions of Anglophone cultures, and thus a meaningful insight into them, preparing them as far as is possible for life in these countries.
Parents will be involved in their child's learner profile and development across subjects including language. Parents will also consult CAS supervisors and their children over the best choices for their culture, activity and service participation.
Language Policy Review
This IB Diploma Language Policy is to be reviewed at the start of each academic year by the English Department and DP Coordinator, CAS coordinator who will be assisted by the other subject teachers. Input will also be sought from our sister-Dipont IB centres throughout China. It will be the
responsibility of the IB Coordinator to ensure the success of the Language Policy review.
For more information, please refer to following document.