Resources and online curriculum for homeschooling the Mandarin Chinese language
As China gains more attention and influence in the world, learning Chinese is becoming increasingly popular. Every year there are more and more Chinese programs being started in schools. For the students who are homeschooled or whose schools don't offer Chinese and don't live in an area with access to a Chinese school, learning Chinese at home seems nearly impossible especially when parents don't understand or speak Chinese. The task appears even more daunting with Chinese speaking, reading, and writing systems that are a drastic departure from the typical foreign languages learned in the US, such as Spanish or French.
Among the homeschool community, the interest in learning Chinese is there. I have looked around some homeschooling forums such as the "Happy Homeschoolers" group on www.Cafemom.com, www.home-school.com, www.homeschoolspot.com, and www.homeschool.com. It seems that there are some parents interested in having their children learn Chinese at home despite not knowing Chinese themselves. One parent even said that she wanted her child adept at 5 languages before college, one of which is Chinese.
Chinese online curriculums certainly make learning the language at home possible in a homeschool environment or as an after-school activity. Parents no longer need to be concerned about speaking with the right pronunciation or generating exercises and worksheets to help their children practice and learn. In fact, parents can learn Chinese along with their children!
At Better Chinese, we boost a terrific online curriculum to support our K-12 curricular materials. The curriculum incorporates lesson content into an animated story and includes additional animated stories, songs/rhymes along with exercises and homework that are automatically graded. We have an online curriculum that complements each of our 4 series:
1.) "My First Chinese Words" for preschool to lower elementary students
2.) "My First Chinese Reader" for elementary students
3.) "Discovering Chinese" for middle to high school students
4.) "Magical Tour of China" for more advanced middle to high school aged students
A trial account to our online curriculum can be easily arranged by registering at http://www.betterchinese.com/Registration.aspx
And since we stress "learning Chinese through stories!" at Better Chinese, we have a collection of 1400+ stories in our online story library that can be used as an additional resource for learning Chinese.