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Mandarin immersion in Deleware

March 17, 2013

Educators discuss the Chinese immersion program.
Kindergarteners go global

Chinese immersion program at McIlvaine Early Childhood Center

10:19 a.m., March 15, 2013–The world is getting smaller for five year olds in Delaware’s Caesar Rodney School District.

Students in other countries often learn world languages beginning in the early years. In order to prepare the state’s workforce for a global economy in the decades to come, Delaware Gov. Jack Markell has launched the World Language Initiative (WLI) program with the goal of students mastering another language before entering high school.

Global Stories
This school year, 100 kindergarteners attending the J. Ralph McIlvaine Early Childhood Center in Magnolia, Del., entered the state’s only Chinese language immersion program. Kindergarteners spend half their day learning literacy, math, science and social studies in Chinese and the other half in English speaking classes.

The program was successfully launched thanks to the efforts of several University of Delaware alumni and the support of UD’s Confucius Institute.

Kevin Fitzgerald, superintendent of the Caesar Rodney School District, whose district has embraced the concept of preparing students for a global economy by offering six languages in high school, jumped at the opportunity to provide kindergarten students with the advantage of learning Chinese. Fitzgerald earned his doctorate degree from UD’s College of Education and Human Development.

Please read more here.

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