Benefits of a Chinese-English Co-Teaching Model

Yew Chung International School of Beijing uses a bilingual co-teaching education model. But how does this work in practice and what are the many benefits? Ms April Peng, the school's primary Chinese curriculum coordinator explains.

Yew Chung Co-Teaching Model
Co-teaching is two teachers working together with groups of students, but a true co-teaching model does not just mean one English teacher with a Chinese-speaking assistant. True co-teaching aims to promote bilingualism, cross-cultural understanding and respect, and provides support and care for a multinational and multilingual group of students.Ms April Peng, Yew Chung International School of Beijing’s primary Chinese curriculum coordinator, gives an in-depth introduction to the benefits of a fully rounded bilingual co-teaching model.

What does Chinese-English co-teaching look like?

For many parents, co-teaching can be hard to visualise. A real co-teaching classroom does not mean one English teacher with a Chinese-speaking assistant or vice-versa. True co-teaching means one Chinese teacher and one Western teacher for each Primary class.The teachers share all of the class management, planning, and decision-making responsibilities. Lessons are led in both tongues, presentations and materials are in Chinese and English, and students complete exercises and activities bilingually.

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Maximise learning efficiency

All Maths, Science, Geography and History classes are co-taught. Co-Teachers jointly plan lessons together ahead of time.According to the learning objectives, Co-Teachers will select from a number of different effective co-teaching modes, including one teaching/one supporting, station teaching, parallel teaching, alternative teaching, and team teaching, to maximise learning efficiency and meet the needs of students.
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An integrated curriculum

At YCIS Beijing we use the English National Curriculum, however an important aspect of our co-teaching is to integrate Chinese culture and references into the curriculum. This helps our students develop an understanding of the customs and tradition of the country they live in, bringing about a sense of cultural fluency and helping them feel at home in China. In addition, having a full understanding of Chinese culture aids language acquisition and contributes to our bilingual programme.

Exploring while learning

One of the more entertaining aspects of this bilingual and bicultural programme is comparative study. During these units, students compare all kinds of Chinese and Western counterparts, such as Zheng He and Magellan, courtyard dwellings and European houses, traditional Chinese medicine and Western medicine, China’s aviation history and Western aviation history, etc.Students move back and forth between different times, spaces, and cultures, exploring their topics while becoming fully rounded and bilingual learners.Relocate’s new Global Mobility Toolkit provides free information, practical advice and support for HR, global mobility managers and global teams operating overseas.Access hundreds of global services and suppliers in our Online DirectoryClick to get to the Relocate Global Online Directory 

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