IMS is a Dual-Language School, where Chinese culture and language are integrated throughout every aspect of the child’s experience. Every classroom, from Foundation to Upper Elementary, is guided by two teachers, one who always addresses the children in English while the other always speaks Mandarin. In this complete and consistent Dual-Language environment, the child is surrounded with opportunities to acquire language naturally throughout each day.
Full-time exposure to two languages along with multi-sensory language materials allow children to effortlessly absorb and experience each as a “living language” through day to day life in the classroom.
By living and learning amongst two languages, our students develop an openness to different cultures and habits. Given the chance to listen and participate in an environment rich in a different language, children assimilate meaning because the new words they hear are in context. Children naturally absorb a second language in much the same way they acquire their first language. Instead of being simply taught in a formal way for specific durations during the week, Chinese permeates the learning environment and becomes a means of communication, and a medium to teach other subjects.
This constant exposure, coupled with the freedom to speak and to interact, facilitates an early ease of code-switching between two languages. When the brain’s executive control system is continually stimulated by consistent dual language experiences, the child efficiently hones the ability to direct his attention processes, including attending to relevant information, while ignoring distractions.
Students are also able to transfer their connection between multiple labels of meaning to other disciplines. Our Dual-Language programme promotes not only bilingualism and biliteracy, but also fosters a genuine respect and understanding of the people and cultures involved.
“The hands are the instruments of man’s intelligence.”