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.

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!”

Is reaching Chinese fluency a realistic goal for non-native children?

This post compares the different schooling approaches to learning Chinese in Singapore (local school vs bilingual immersion), and how this translates into learning outcomes from a native-speaking perspective. It also lists good bridging books to encourage bilingualism and biliteracy.

Review: VIP Peilian for online piano practice

Online one-to-one music lessons in Chinese and English, at a fraction of the cost of usual classes! See how we use it for piano.

How to help a child read Chinese (when you can’t speak it yourself)

How I taught my eldest daughter to read 1300+ Chinese characters within 6 months, as non-Chinese speaking parents.

Surviving P1 Chinese for the clueless parent

Learning Chinese at primary school level as a mother tongue is not the same as in pre-school. It quickly goes from being a fun and immersive approach, into an academic structure – but there are some very simple ways which we found to help stay on top of this.

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.