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How to become a great Chinese teacher

July 23 2014

As the number of U.S. middle and high school Chinese programs increase, the need for more qualified Chinese teachers with solid knowledge and certification has become imperative. According to a report by Asia Society, there was an estimated 200% growth in Chinese language programs in the United States between 2004 and 2008. Since then the number of programs has grown exponentially. Given the high demands of U.S. schools, what can Chinese teachers do to develop their teaching skills and become a great Chinese teacher in these growing number of Mandarin education classes?
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July – “喜” To be Happy and Delighted

July 22 2014

Summer is full of happiness and delight for everyone. In China, drums of all shapes and sizes are used to celebrate joyous occasions. The Chinese character for happiness is 喜 (xǐ) and consists of two parts, the drum and a mouth that shouts happily along with the beat. The comic above show how a child tried playing the erhu which sounded so bad, someone dumps a bowl of water on him to make him stop. He decides to try playing the drums and finds that he is actually pretty good at it. He shouts out loud as his beats his drum face bursts into a huge smile and shows how the Chinese character 喜 evolves from that pictograph.

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Creating a Student-centered Chinese Classroom

July 18 2014

In education today, the terms “student-centered instruction”, “student-centeredness”, and “student-centered classroom” are buzz words that are synonymous with best practices instruction.  Research suggests that a student-centered approach has many advantages compared to the traditional teacher-centered approach. It helps students to develop a deeper understanding of the content, while developing their critical thinking skills. This thereby  increases their confidence level and creates positive attitudes towards learning. Many schools believe that student-centered instruction is essential to the success of learning. As a teacher of Chinese language instruction in the U.S, I find this approach useful and effective in my  classroom and would like to share with you my understanding of creating a student-centered classroom for Chinese language learners.
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IB Chinese: An Insider’s View

July 11 2014

Siqi Guo is currently a 3rd grade Chinese immersion teacher for Washington Yu Ying Public Charter School and our newest guest blogger. We are excited to share her insights with you all.

Did you know that there are 3,851 schools across 148 countries now offering International Baccalaureate® (IB) and over 3000 leading universities now recognizing the IB Diploma Program (DP) assessment? Many US schools are attracted by the IB mission of building internationally-minded students, and have started to adopt IB programme. I am currently a Chinese teacher at Washington Yu Ying Charter School, a Chinese-immersion, public charter, International Baccalaureate World School in the nation’s capital. I’ve learned so much about meeting the high demands of IB through the help of my colleagues and wanted to share my learnings regarding program planning, curriculum development, and lesson alignment to IB standards. Here’s an insider view of what teachers are doing for a Primary Years Program (PYP) school’s Chinese program.

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We’re a 2014 Ohio Approved Textbook Publisher!

June 17 2014

We are glad to announce Better Chinese is now an approved publisher of the Ohio Department of Education! We are also the only publisher that is solely focused on the Mandarin language learning market.

Now our complete Mandarin curricula for preschool to college have been approved by the Ohio Department of Education and ready for purchase per Ohio Revised Code 3329.01.

Feel free to contact David Currie, the sales account manager for the state of Ohio. He can be reached at david (dot) currie (at) betterchinese (dot) com or 888-384-0902 x101.

Launching On-Demand Teacher Training

June 5 2014

We are excited to announce the launch of our Professional Development series. We know that today’s K-12 Mandarin educators have a new challenge: to engage a new wave of Chinese language learners with the latest technology and “apps” while ensuring standards such as ACTFL and the Common Core State Standards are met. To address this problem, we are launching the first series of self-paced, asynchronous webinars, with blended learning options, that provide professional development specifically for Chinese teachers at the click of a button. The webinars not only discuss how technology can be leveraged in the classroom, but also utilizes technology to be its unique delivery platform.
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Homeschool Chinese: Applying Chinese Writing Skills

June 4 2014

One of the benefits of homeschooling is that we have the flexibility to travel frequently.  The kids and I enjoy keeping a journal or scrapbook to chronicle our adventures while we are traveling; enclosing ticket stubs, brochures, and photographs. If time allows we also occasionally sketch animals, plants, and sites we enjoy.

Additionally, though we may be on the road, the kids are still expected to continue with their Mandarin studies.  They bring along their notebooks and practice writing characters, quiz each other, and if the location permits, engage in conversations with native speakers.

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Hello Summer Sale!

June 3 2014

We love summer and want to celebrate with our special Summer Storypacks.

Regularly priced over $85, enjoy our entire online story library (1400+ animated stories*) plus a curriculum series of your choice for just $45** from activation date to August 31, 2014.
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Happy Dragon Boat Festival: 端午节

June 2 2014

May 5th on the lunar calendar is 端午节 (Duānwǔ jié). One of the most popular traditions during this holiday is to wrap-up some delicious glutinous rice inside a few bamboo leaves called 粽子(Zòngzi). Although I love my sweets, I prefer the salty 粽子 over the sweet ones filled with red bean or sweet beans from Northern China. The salty ones from the South are often filled with salted duck egg, pork belly, Chinese sausage, pork fat, and shiitake mushrooms. My favorite is a combination of sausage, fat and mushrooms. My mouth is savoring as I write this.
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See you at NCLC 2014

May 5 2014


Are you ready for the 2014 National Chinese Language Conference (NCLC)?

We are all packed up with our innovative, new materials and ready to head south! We are excited to meet with you and hear how your school year is going.

Schedule a meeting with our sales managers David Currie, Kelly Chen and Peiju Chen at usa (at) betterchinese (dot) com or stop by Booth 41 to learn more about our products and request free examination materials. We have also prepared some special GIFTS for you too.

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