UPPER WEST SIDE — Elizabeth Willaum, the director of HudsonWay Immersion School, doesn’t speak too much English with the school’s 60 or so students, some of whom are as young as 2 years old.
Instead, she spends a lot of time watching and listening as teachers give instructions in Mandarin. And even though she sees it happen every day, she said she’s always astounded when toddlers and young children, most of whose parents only speak English, respond in Mandarin.
Willaum, 67, joined HudsonWay last year as the director of both its Summit, N.J., and Upper West Side campuses to guide the school in its mission to immerse students in another language. In New Jersey, preschoolers and elementary students learn Spanish and Mandarin and in New York they take Mandarin.
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