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China Syndrome: Why more kids are learning Mandarin

April 25, 2014

BY CHRIS TAYLOR

NEW YORK Thu Apr 24, 2014 11:38am EDT

(Reuters) – If famed investor Jim Rogers is known for one trait above all, it is for spotting themes early — and betting on them big.

So when the co-founder of The Quantum Fund (with George Soros) and author of “Adventure Capitalist” became a father, he naturally thought of how best to give his daughters an advantage.

His answer: Have them learn Mandarin.

“I am spending a lot of time, money and energy to be sure my kids do it,” Rogers told Reuters.

Indeed. Instead of just hiring a Mandarin-speaking nanny or having his daughters take a language class or two per week, the Rogers family packed up their belongings and moved across the world to Singapore.

“My older daughter has now won the nationwide Mandarin-speaking contest two years in a row,” Rogers said. “Her little sister is even better.”

Of course, not every parent is willing to undertake such a dramatic life change. But there is no denying that more and more Americans are keen to have their children learn the language of the world’s most populous country and second-largest economy.

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