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The study of teaching the Chinese language in Thailand -an example of curriculums at the Chinese Language Center
Teaching Chinese as a Second /Foreign Language
The study of teaching the Chinese language in Thailand – an example of curriculums at the Chinese Language Center Abstract Key words: Teaching Chinese as a Second / Foreign Language, Methodology, Whole Language, Metacognition This paper is a study of methods for which to increase the interests and learning efficiency of students learning Chinese as a foreign language. Therefore, the author has chosen the Chinese Language Center (here forth termed as the C.L.C.) in Bangkok, Thailand as location of her research, focusing on the courses for second and third year elementary students for her study. The learning environment and chosen teaching materials at the C.L.C. , the learning attitudes of the students, self reflections of the author as a member of the teaching staff at the center are all vital parts of the author’s research. The instruction of a language should encompass all aspects of the language itself, hence the author has combined the teaching strategies for listening and reading comprehension, speech and written composition in to her classes. By observing the reactions of the students, to further evaluate the effectiveness of the selected teaching methods. Data collection of this study comes from surveys taken by students, reflections of the author, classroom observations and recordings, evaluations of the learning effectiveness of the students in the realm of listening, speaking, reading and writing. In order to maintain the reliability and effectiveness of this study, the author visits with students and their parents were conducted throughout the course of this study to discuss and conduct surveys regarding the effectiveness of the student’s study. Regarding the usage of teaching materials, surveys were conducted to see the opinions of students about different texts. Further analysis was also done for the different texts used in the C.L.C. The author’s studies at the C.LC. of teaching Chinese as a foreign language between 2007 and 2008 indicate that, the teacher must have an understanding of the student’s language abilities beforehand. Whilst teaching, the author uses knowledge development of the schema theory, with the Spiral Curriculum by J.S. Bruner, as well as Audio-Lingual, direct methods, emphasizing on revision and practical application, to strengthen the student’s cognitive memory. In order to reach the levels needed for functional lingual communication, extending on the teaching methods of coordination between written and spoken forms, using sentence-making and essay writing as practice, to provide students the chance to integrate the language in daily life. It can clearly be seen from the evaluations of the students that their learning ability of the Chinese Language has increased.
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