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Dual-Language immersion in Casa

No one but a child can construct his own machinery and so learn to perfection as many languages as he hears spoken about him

Maria Montessori, The Discovery of the Child

The Montessori Dual- Language Classroom:

  • Includes 25 children of mixed ages, working mostly individually. Older children who are approaching the Age of reason will naturally begin to work in small groups.
  • Has two teachers, at least one of whom is a fully qualified AMI Montessori teacher.
  • One teacher is an English speaker, and one is a Putonghua speaker, who introduce materials individually to each child.
  • The natural dual-language environment occurs in the morning three-hour Montessori work cycle, with some older children staying after lunch for continued work in the afternoon work cycle.
  • The dual-language environment has many specialised Montessori materials which assist the child to learn the structure of the written language.
  • Activities occur regularly throughout the week, before or after the three-hour cycle, including PE, Music & Movement, and circle times.

Dual Language Immersion

The young child craves language to be able to communicate and describe the world. Spoken language is the foundation for all creation of language in the child, and opens the door for all future learning. In the IMS Casa dei Bambini classroom, the child begins to develop an instinctive sense of language through natural exposure to English and Putonghua. Every environment has an English-speaking and a native Mandarin-speaking teacher to surround the child with opportunities to absorb and acquire language naturally throughout each day.

Typical Chinese Language Level by Age 6

By the age of six, a typical IMS child is able to understand what the Mandarin teacher says to them. They are able to hold a conversation using the correct tones and has a great deal of descriptive vocabulary.