Primary School Chinese Mother Tongue and Co-curricular activities

Who said primary school in Singapore is stressful?

I’ve come to the conclusion that to have a balanced childhood, is it is almost mutually exclusive of being in the top 5% of any Singaporean school’s student cohort.  I feel it’s near impossible to achieve this level of perfection without compromising on either sleep, recreation, or family time.   Of course, everyone has different priorities and expectations, which explains why the competition is so very tough. But that doesn’t mean the primary school experience has to be stressful! And we all have a role to play to make it more sustainable.

App comparison: iHuman Hongen Chinese (洪恩识字) versus Wukong Literacy (悟空识字) for learning Chinese characters

Our favourite Chinese literacy apps are iHuman Chinese Hong En Literacy (洪恩识字) and Wukong Literacy (悟空数学).  Both of iHuman app and Wukong Literacy app are designed for children who have a sound spoken understanding of Mandarin, and are starting to learn characters/words in Simplified Chinese form.  These are great apps for learning Chinese characters. This reviewContinue reading “App comparison: iHuman Hongen Chinese (洪恩识字) versus Wukong Literacy (悟空识字) for learning Chinese characters”

My bilingual parenting mistakes, and resolutions for 2021

(above graphic is modified list from Bilingual Kidspot) As the year draws to an end, it marks my one-year anniversary of blogging about Chinese home learning.  In an otherwise-really-bizarre-year for the whole planet, it’s been a haven to be able to write and learn together with so many amazing parents trying to do the Chinese-EnglishContinue reading “My bilingual parenting mistakes, and resolutions for 2021”

Review: Bilin Academy – online classes in Chinese art, chess and more!

Bilin Academy is an online platform offering immersive extracurricular classes for children in Chinese, which cleverly integrate content and language learning in a fun package. Thanks to the recommendation of a like-minded parent in Singapore, we started online art classes with Bilin Academy in mid-2020, and have continued since then. My kids have enjoyed BilinContinue reading “Review: Bilin Academy – online classes in Chinese art, chess and more!”

Reading Pen Review: eTutor Education Star

The eTutor pen can read popular children’s Chinese magazines and fortnightly publications which many Singaporean primary schools subscribe to, such as 好朋友 (Hao Peng You), 知识报 (Zhi Shi Bao), 知识画报 (Zhi Shi Hua Bao), 新朋友 (New Friends), 新天地 (New World) and 新列车 (New Express), etc. For us, this was the main reason we bought the pen.

Cultivating a love for Chinese when it’s not spoken in the home

It’s hard to encourage a child to love and speak a language which the parents don’t speak – but it’s possible, and rewarding. And living in Singapore is a great opportunity for this to take place!

Here are my top tips on how to increase Chinese exposure for non-Chinese speaking families, and also how to cope in a Chinese schooling system for non-Chinese speaking families.

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