Students in the Immersion Program will:
• Develop fluency and literacy in Mandarin and English
• Achieve proficiency in all academic subjects, meeting or exceeding state and district standards
• Cultivate an understanding and appreciation of other cultures, and develop positive attitudes towards fellow students, their families, and their community
Our program at a glance
For the 2018/19 school year, we have 14 classes; 2 each for grades kindergarten through fifth grade and 1 sixth grade all at Azevada Elementary School. Additionally, there is 1 seventh grade class at Hopkins Jr. High School. There are about 350 children in the program now. With the current level of interest in this program, we project to add two new classes each year until there are 2 classrooms in each grade level through 8th grade for a total of 18 classes. According to a March 2017 survey of parents representing 69% of the children in the program, 73% of the families speak English, 15% speak Mandarin, and 9% speak Cantonese as primary languages at home. 59% of the families surveyed also speak a second language in the home at least 10% of the time. Other languages spoken either as the primary or secondary language at home include English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Spanish, Taiwanese, Burmese, Vietnamese, Japanese, Gujarati, and American Sign Language.
What is Chinese Immersion?
Immersion education is an alternative educational model designed to provide students with fluency and literacy in two languages. In this program all students develop literacy in Mandarin first with the gradual addition of English.
Students in the Immersion Program are taught the same California State standards as all other students in the district, at the same grade level, with the exception that the students in this program are taught in the Mandarin language for most of the school day. English is taught daily and the students are encouraged to interact in both languages.
The language immersion approach is a proven, effective method in providing children with a well-
Why is immersion an effective second language model?
A great deal of research has centered on foreign language acquisition in various school settings. Over the past thirty years, due in large part to the success of immersion programs, there has been a shift away from teaching language in isolation and toward integrating language and content. This shift is based on four principles:
- Language is acquired most effectively when it is learned in a meaningful social context. For young learners, the school curriculum provides a natural basis for foreign language learning, offering them the opportunity to communicate about what they know and what they want to know, as well as about their feelings and attitudes.
- Important and interesting content provides a motivating context for learning the communicative functions of the new language. Young children are not interested in learning language that serves no meaningful function.
- First language acquisition, cognition and social awareness go hand in hand in young children. By integrating language and content, foreign language learning, too, becomes an integral part of a child’s social and cognitive development.
- Formal and functional characteristics of language change from one context to another. An integrated language and content model in an elementary school setting provides a wide variety of contexts in which to use the foreign language.
Is Mandarin Immersion Right for Your Child?
• Do you value bilingualism, bi-
• Does your child need challenges?
• Do you want your child to have a linguistic edge in tomorrow’s global market economy?
• Are you willing to make a long-