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Chinese Language Schools & Preschools
Chinese Language Schools with Reviews
I am interested in hearing parents' opinions on the many Mandarin-immersion elementary school options in the East Bay: Yu Ming, Shu Ren, American International Montessori (AIM), Global Montessori International School (GMIS), and Pacific Rim International (PRINTS). I have visited all of the schools and am familiar with their basic differences (public vs. private, Montessori vs. International Baccalaureate, full immersion vs. two-way immersion, bilingual vs. trilingual, temporary vs. permanent facilities).
What I am looking for is more perspectives on what your children have gained from these schools. How has their knowledge of Mandarin progressed? What about other academic knowledge (especially math)? How are their general school skills, attitude toward school, and friendships and social skills? In which areas (if any) have you chosen to supplement their education?
I would particularly like to hear from parents who can compare their children's experiences attending more than one of these schools, especially at the K+ levels. I am also curious to hear from parents whose children already were conversant in Mandarin prior to entering the school. Curious Parent
Since starting Yu Ming in August, my son can now converse with me in Mandarin. I've started speaking to him in Mandarin at home and initially, he understood none of it. Now not only does he understand what I'm saying and asking of him, he responds and asks his own questions all in Mandarin. He has a strong interest in trying to read Chinese books and newspapers and is more curious than ever about the culture. He can recognize, read and write more characters than I can and continues to come home with new words and now phrases to add to his vocabulary. This has absolutely amazed me.
What has amazed me almost as much, if not more, is the dedication his teacher has to differentiated learning in the math curriculum. The classroom is divided up into small groups for math time and each group is working on a similar theme, be it addition, subtraction or measurements, but each group is doing work at their level and working on advancing at their own pace. I've seen kids progress from adding on their fingers to now adding single digits in their head and starting double digit addition on paper. My child is now working on multiplication tables as he has already mastered addition with carrying numbers and subtraction with borrowing. The teacher has never stopped him from learning as much as he wants and at his pace so now, in the second half of 1st grade, he is doing exactly what his older brother is doing in math at a great Berkeley public school. Again, absolutely amazing.
Best of luck with your choice. I know it's hard but I feel like we found the perfect fit for our son and couldn't be happier about how things are going at Yu Ming. Kelly
To me, the differentiated small group teaching at Yu Ming allows for my child's natural curiosity to bloom as well as provides room for each subject to be thoroughly taught at each child's level. In addition, I have truly enjoyed getting to know everyone at both schools. However, I am most happy to have my child attend a school that I help build, that allows me a lot of input in what is taught, lets me help shape the school culture, and where the administrators are truly friendly people that listen and respond to parent concerns in a timely and graceful manner. Both schools will require your help in the classrooms and beyond. So, think about what you want for your child's education and how the school you choose can help you achieve that goal. I hope this helps you find the right fit for both you and your child. Parent to a happy Yu Ming Student
This year, two new teachers (one who is also the Assistant Head of School) have been brought on board, and the level of teaching, especially in math, has risen to an impressive new level. My son has made amazing progress in math this year. He is doing fractions, decimals, division, multi-digit multiplication, and more with ease and he really enjoys it. The math now combines the best of Chinese teaching (ie drilling of key concepts and facts, like multiplication tables) and American teaching (conceptual, practical skills) and is very effective. English is also taught on a differentiated basis so students progress at their own level and are always challenged. Several students in my son's class are reading and writing a grade level or two above their age. They also have a wonderful Kodaly music program. We have not had to supplement my son's learning at all.
Socially, the small size has been wonderful for my son's social development. The teachers know each student really well and their strengths and weaknesses, and work on building community within their classrooms. While the small class size means students have more limited options for making friends, it helps build important skills as students learn to work out differences and accept differing points of view, rather than just being able to switch to another groups of friends when conflicts arise. The students in my son's class have all become very close and he has made several very good friends. The small size also allows teachers to plan regular field trips, including overnight trips, which have become a key part of the learning process. The trips have also been a lot of fun and helped the students and teachers (and parents) forge close bonds.
In short, we are so happy we chose Shu Ren. The academics have exceeded our expectations but most importantly, our son loves going to school every day and we know he is being well-cared for in a warm, nurturing environment by wonderful teachers. happy Shu Ren parent
Our daughter was already somewhat conversant before starting Yu Ming, but not because we are native Mandarin speakers at home. She had attended a Mandarin-speaking daycare, and had gained fluency (for a 3-y old), which she then understandably seemed to lose while attending English-speaking preschool. During her Yu Ming language interview almost a year ago, my daughter had a shyness-attack and may have been confused by hearing the language spoken outside of daycare and by strangers, so she said disappointingly very little; the interviewers did note that she seemed to understand some of what they had said to her. So at the start of the school year, she was only quasi-conversant.
Now we are half way through our first year at Yu Ming, and just today, I was encouraging our now 5 y.o. daughter to show off her Mandarin to a bilingual Chinese friend. I asked a series of questions in English: how would you say this in Chinese to your teacher (who only speaks Mandarin to the kids). My daughter was able to instantly give the Mandarin equivalent. (In each case, our friend nodded and smiled at me to say, yes, she interpreted and spoke correctly.)
My daughter seems to have gained a lot of confidence in using her spoken Chinese in different settings since starting Yu Ming -- the wide exposure to other families who value learning Mandarin for whatever reason helps enormously, as well as having opportunities to mingle with other families who speak to her only in Mandarin, even in social settings away from school. Yu Ming has expanded the context for her in which it's okay to use Mandarin.
Each day she sings Chinese songs as we walk into Yu Ming, -- it's a sort of transition ritual. Many of the songs were learned at home (off the internet, and from CDs), but she has also learned many new songs at Yu Ming, too.
Since the start of Yu Ming she has also learned to write many Chinese characters, which comes from daily practice in class as well as outside school hours. The amount of homework required was really a shock, but I can see the many benefits of establishing such a disciplined approach to homework so early on; IMO really worth the effort it took to get her into the groove.
Since the beginning of the year, her math skills have progressed from merely counting (English & Mandarin) to getting basic math concepts of adding and subtracting. We have reinforced all of this at home through helping with homework, and playing counting games. Of course it's a work in progress, and we have not felt the need to seek any additional support.
Yu Ming's curriculum has expanded recently and now includes music, and PE (in the form of Kung Fu). I know the children often do art projects in class, and I personally would also like to see more exploratory/expressive use of art to help develop creativity, rather than only prescribed art projects/crafts. Where my daughter once used observation and line drawing to spontaneously draw portraits (which she did at 3 y.o.) her attitude has now changed to: ''I only know how to draw certain things,'' and I often wonder if this is related to an attitude that there is a ''right way'' to write Chinese characters, and perhaps by extension, to create arts & crafts.
My daughter's social skills are developing, thanks to extra support she was given early on at Yu Ming (she's on the young side in her class). These days she often talks fondly about her schoolmates, relating the funny things they said or did, giving me the impression that she is enjoying it enormously, and is feeling pride in being a member of her class.
There is a great deal of parent volunteer involvement required (reminiscent of a co-op preschool experience). I wonder if that aspect will change as the school grows and evolves, but I also see that it has added to the richness of our experience there.
So, although I cannot make comparisons to other Mandarin-immersion programs, I do know that overall our daughter's needs are being met at Yu Ming, and that she is thriving there. I also experience the administration and teaching staff to be very caring and responsive to my concerns, and I appreciate this immensely. Eileen
Firstly - The inquiry based learning method is amazing and my son is thriving on all counts (especially with his awareness of the world he lives in). The children spend a lot time doing hands on learning - while being in a warm and nurturing environment. His teachers have been amazing and always accessible if I need anything (as well as the administration). His math skills in particular are really high and the teacher continually challenges him without it feeling threatening. We do not supplement his education in anyway because what he is learning is already beyond our expectations. And as far as reading in English, he is slightly ahead of the curve despite him only having 20% of his time devoted to English. The English teacher encourages children to go beyond their levels, without putting pressure on them.
Secondly - The Mandarin immersion model. I am envious of all that my son is learning. The inquiry method with the immersion model is a great marriage.
Our son comes from a non- Chinese speaking household and has done exceedingly well with his Chinese and really enjoys learning another language. We have been told by many native speakers at the school that my sons Chinese is very good and he is starting to sound more like a native. He has done well with learning how to write his characters and is working on his reading in Chinese. As far as the immersion model, our son is telling us that his Chinese homework is easier then his English homework.
As far as social skills, he is doing really well. I use to think my son was shy but now see that his social skills are very good. He is in a small class and gets a lot of attention from his teachers and the other students. He has access to kids of all grades and plays well with a multitude of ages. I also have lots of play dates at my house with the kids from school
Additionally, we were accepted into the public Chinese school for 1st grade but were so happy with Shu Ren that we declined the offer. Happy Shu Ren parent
AIM is unique as it combines Montessori with Mandarin immersion.
As a Montessori school, AIM offers a very joyful learning environment, where high academic standards co-exist with deep understanding. You just have to visit the multi-age elementary classroom and observe: I came away from my observations wanting to go there myself, to explore all the interesting materials (there are replicas of human skulls throughout evolution, a class python and other animals, lots of science materials and experiments, and a 3,000+ book library right in the classroom!) And with the Montessori approach, children learn not just content, but also key skills such as organization, time management, and self-assessment.
The head English-speaking teacher, Mark Powell, is absolutely wonderful. He has almost two decades of Montessori teaching experience, and is just amazing at providing students with firm guidance and inspiration at the same time.
The classroom is tri-lingual, with one Mandarin speaking teacher and a Japanese-speaking, AMI-trained teacher, in addition to the English teacher. The mornings have all three languages spoken, and then there is a 2+ hour afternoon period dedicated to either Japanese or Mandarin, depending on the child's program.
The program is small - just over 20 students are in one class, with three teachers - so each child gets very personalized, individualized attention. They also go on regular field trips (seems like the elementary class is on a field trip every 2-3 weeks, and they do several overnight trips every year.) There's great communications, with a weekly elementary newsletter that describes in great detail what is going on in the class, and shares lots of picture with the parents.
The whole school is truly global: they celebrate Chinese & Japanese traditions, in addition to English ones. And while AIM is pretty new (this is the 3rd year), there's a great parent community, and the school is beyond the initial start-up phase and actually very organized.
My children spoke no Mandarin when they joined, but my older one (who has been at AIM now for 1.5 years) apparently now speaks it well (I can't really tell, as neither my husband or I speak Mandarin.) There is a mix of native speakers, but also many families who don't have a Mandarin (or even Asian) background, and with the individualized Montessori approach, each child can get challenged at his or her language level.
If you are looking for a place where your child will be immersed in Mandarin and in Asian culture, but also learn academics to a high standard, all while loving to go to school, you have to pay AIM a visit! Happy AIM parent
My child is in 2nd grade. This year they get a list of 20 Chinese characters that they can practice at home. They can exchange for a new list as soon as they memorized the current list. My child went through 19 lists in the first semester. They also reads and write in Chinese in class. They get reading materials based on their level. Since we have Chinese speaking background, my daughter gets more advanced reading material. She can write in much longer paragraphs than last school year. Her handwriting has improved tremendously.
Her English is also very good. Besides the work they do at school, they also get spelling list, reading list that they do every week at home, they are all self-paced. She is at a very advanced reading level. They also write based on the topic they are learning. And their writing is very organized with a beginning, each paragraph has a central idea, and a summary ending, etc.
Math is another area that I am impressed with. They have a teacher that has taught in a language immersion school in China. In my opinion, she integrated some of the better methods they use in Chinese schools. In 2nd grade, my daughter memorizes times table, she can do multiplications with 2 digits numbers, for example 35 * 24. She can do addition and subtraction even in thousands in her head (without the help of a pen and pencil). Quite a few of her classmates is at the same math level as her. In class they break down the kids into groups based on their level, and teach them new things, and give them practices based on their level of math skills.
So overall, here is what I feel. How much we (both parents and kids) put into, is how much we get out of. And Shu Ren offers the opportunity to let them advance at their own pace, will not slow them down. With a smaller class, they get a lot more personal attention.
Of course it's not all study at school. They have a lot of fun. I have a lot to say about that, but that's not what you were asking a parent
Our experience is that the small classrooms really enable the teachers to provide differentiated teaching for different levels. My child is in second grade and learning in-depth concepts with each unit of inquiry, in English and Chinese. Additionally, he has self-paced work in Math, Chinese and English. He's comfortable with multiplication, division, and fractions. I think that he can read just about any English chapter book put in front of him. He has also been taking home packets of 20 Chinese characters each week and advancing at his own pace. Friends and family have been surprised with the level of thinking and learning that he demonstrates.
It was very difficult to get him to speak Mandarin by the time he was 3 even though it was the language of his primary care taker. He initiates Chinese conversations with Chinese family members now. We've recently texted in Chinese when he was out of town.
Socially, his classmates all know each other well and play together. I've observed that he has been able to make new friends under different circumstances, outside of the classroom. The afterschool programs also bring different kids together from the community.
The one thing that I will say is that the school has focused most of its energy and resources on the quality of its teachers and curriculum, and not as much on making itself known in the community. I hope that this would change because what an incredible opportunity if you can take advantage of it. Happy ShuRen Parent
1. Our son is learning to be bi-lingual and bi-literate in Mandarin! We by-pass our Albany Public Schools for this opportunity.
2. The quality of education is stellar. I am a public high school language teacher and I have been very impressed with the pedagogy of my son's Kindergarten teacher. She is creative, skillful at classroom management, and wonderful at differentiating learning. She is constantly building on prior knowledge making her classroom an excellent learning atmosphere for both Mandarin and Non-Mandarin speakers. Our son's English reading and writing skills are on par with other Kindergarteners in all-day English programs. It's amazing what the English teacher does in an hour per day. Both teachers use a variety of audio, visual, musical, and kinesthetic methods that are helpful for all learners. My son gets a homework packet and a DVD of a Chinese movie cartoon each week. Some of his homework is interactive. We have to read to our son each night and we have a weekly family activity (such as measuring things around the house, collecting and counting pennies, etc.)
3. This is a public school. Our son briefly attended a private Montessori Mandarin-immersion school for pre-school. His experience was terrible. Some of the students were downright mean to him, treating him as an outsider. I felt that they were culturally incompetent, prioritizing European and Asian culture, and unabashedly promoting this on their website. Unfortunately, you cannot access their views on ''multi-cultural education'' unless you have already enrolled your child. He was the only Black boy there and as we built a network of other African-American friends who had their children in private Mandarin-immersion schools, we found that they too, shared the complaint of cultural incompetence. Public schools are not allowed to have such insulated ignorance. Yu Ming teachers have been certified in the United States, which makes a tremendous difference in how they perceive their diverse student population. Our son has teachers who genuinely care about him and they have studied race, class, and gender issues in a U.S. context.
4. Parents are welcomed and embraced as resources. If I have a concern, I feel that I can talk to the principal and the teachers to help brainstorm solutions. I feel that my culture has been honored as I was asked to make presentations to classes for Kwanzaa and Black History Month. We have an amazing group of parents who are a strong presence at the school. At the Montessori school previously mentioned, I felt like my son was participating in a controlled experiment. They did not want parents to be there unannounced. We had to peer through blinds in order to watch the children from a window...very strange. At Yu Ming, there are plenty of volunteer opportunities to be involved with the school, whether you speak Mandarin or not. The parents have pulled off a highly successful fundraising gala, made submissions to the media, organized film-screenings, and put in countless hours to the school.
5. The location is almost perfect. Parking is terrible but on the flipside, Yu Ming is in the heart of Oakland's Chinatown. When I bring my son to school he recognizes characters on signs all the time. It is very exciting for me as a parent who does not speak Mandarin to witness him seeing the relevance of his language-learning. If you asked my son what he likes about his school, he would tell you one of the things he loves is the field trips. Because the school is so close to the museums, authentic Chinese restaurants, the library, the BART, etc. the students benefit from very rich cultural experiences literally in their backyard. DWF
We're looking for a Mandarin afterschool program in the East Bay for our 4 year old. I've looked at Keystone Chinese School and New Sprouts and ShuRen, but the first two are weekends only and the last one was not a good fit. She's in preschool until 3, so we are looking for something fun that she can do in the afternoon. Does anyone have other suggestions? Thanks! East Bay mom
I've been searching for Mandarin immersion programs in the East Bay for grade schoolers. I found a few. I'm interested in hearing from parents who have their children in a Mandarin immersion school, not just afterschool or Saturday programs. How did you decide on your school? What do you like about your school? Thanks. Anon
Additionally, the thing that is drawing us to Yu Ming Charter School is that it is a public charter school, so there is no tuition. We think that this will help bring in a more diverse group of students and families compared to the private options out there. I admit that it'll be tough being a pioneer with a brand new school, but it seems like a great opportunity to take advantage of something special. Berkeley parent hoping to get into Yu Ming
I'm particularly excited about a brand new public (= free) charter Mandarin immersion school, Yu Ming, that is going to open for K and 1st grade in August 2011 and that is planned to be a K-8 school. (http://www.yumingschool.org) Yu Ming is presently accepting applications with a deadline of Feb 10. Applications are welcome from all interested families, including students with and without Mandarin Chinese language skills. The school is actively recruiting in non-Asian, non-Caucasian communities. Yu Ming aims for bilingual and cultural fluency in both Chinese and English, and also intends to make their school a year-round academic learning environment, with longer days and a longer school year. Year-round learning has been noted as advantageous for a number of reasons (see, http://childparenting.about.com/od/schoollearning/a/year-round-school-pros-cons.htm). I've heard that the school location is going to be somewhere in or near Oakland Chinatown or on Alameda Island, but a location has not yet been made public. Good luck! a Berkeley parent
Another reason GMIS is so special is the culture. It is a warm, loving, kind place for the kids that also focuses on their education and making sure they learn. The kids love going to school and you can see what they are learning. And, they all do speak Chinese during the day, to the other kids as well, even those who don't have Mandarin spoken to them at home (like my son).
Additionally, this school is going places and will make a name for itself. Vivi has a tremendous amount of energy and she always has her eye to how to make the program stronger and reaching out to the community to bring resources and relationships to the school. Not only did they improve the art and music education this year (MOCHA comes to the school) she is reaching out to other schools in the area to create relationships for those graduating.
And lastly, but not least, the parent community is strong. there is a lot of parental involvement, which is great for the kids as well as the school.
GMIS was a wonderful decision for us as a family and we couldn't be happier. I hope you find your way to GMIS as well. A Happy Parent
Yu Ming will be a K-8 school and open in August 2011 with two Kindergarten and two 1st grade classes. We are now accepting applications and the deadline for submitting is February 10th.
The school will be located in Alameda County and is open to all California residents. Yu Ming helps to fill a huge unmet need and interest for public Chinese language instruction in the East Bay. The school aims to provide a rigorous, comprehensive education for students of all backgrounds and teach students from kindergarten to 8th grade to be fully bilingual in Mandarin Chinese and English. Because it is a public charter school, there are no tuition fees. The Alameda County Board of Education unanimously approved Yu Ming's charter in November 2010, a show of unprecedented support for our school concept. We are excited to be a part of the growing community of schools and parents interested in Mandarin immersion.
Please visit our website at http://www.yumingschool.org for more information or to download an enrollment application. Chrissy Schwinn, Yu Ming Founding Family Member
The other thing is that the school is going to be in downtown oakland nr. chinatown. It will give us options for public or private transportation to get our daughter to school. Everett
Hi I have a daughter who is 1yr old and is half Chinese and half African American. Does anyone have any recommendations for preschools in SF that has Chinese immersion? -Kathleen
Does anyone have experience with the Chinese immersion programs at either American International Montessori or Global Montessori International School, both in Berkeley? I am interested in the quality of the teachers and instruction, whether the classroom environments are nurturing, and whether the children feel academic pressure, plus any other impressions. I am especially interested in these issues as they relate to the infant (up to age 3) and young children's (up to age 6) programs. Any information would be much appreciated. Thank you.
-teachers are extremely experienced, very kind and patient. Just as importantly, the admin folks are fabulously organized, communicative and responsive.
-both my husband and I really enjoyed our opportunity to sit in and observe our daughter's classroom in action. Activities are very inviting and stimulating - allowing interactive work and solo learning. The school also sponsors parent education nights that have given us some great food for thought. In particular, the director Mahr sensei is very accessible, with great insight into issues about parenting and life lessons to bring back into the home.
-the biggest test of course is how our daughter has responded to AIM. Understandably, it was rough for her to go from a mostly English-speaking loosely structured setting to a Chinese immersion school setting. We did get about 2-3 weeks of major tears and drama at drop off, but even in that rocky period she was demonstrated huge advances in language acquisition and other development. We've seen her develop an amazing ability to focus on a given task, work independently to solve problems, a lovely inclination to help clean around the house, a big jump in counting and math skill/ interest, and lively language development: spoken, written, and sung (I love all the singing), Chinese, English and some Japanese. Even a renewed interest in other languages she's exposed to (Tagalog and Spanish). She's brought home and implemented with us circle time and the peace table.
In sum, AIM was the right choice for us, blending language immersion, Montessori theories, experienced teachers and a warm communicative/responsive environment. Hope this is helpful. Linda
We have had generally positive experiences at all three schools, however we are extremely happy to be at American International (AIM). To address the specific questions:
--The environment at the school is very nurturing. The teacher in our 3 year old child;s Mandarin classroom has decades of experience and actually worked with our older child at Pacific Rim. She runs a very organized classroom and at first glance might not seem "nurturing." That was honestly my first reaction years ago upon meeting her at Pacific Rim. However she has been without a doubt the favorite teacher of both of our children. They simply love her. How she manages that connection with the kids while keeping such order and focus on the lessons is pretty amazing.
--The Mandarin teacher for the "infant community" - which is where a 2 year old would be - also came from Pacific Rim. She also teaches the Mandarin lesson to the elementary children in the afternoon, including our seven year old. All the same comments apply here - she runs a very tight ship while creating very strong bonds with the children.
Equally important, both are excellent Mandarin instructors. I do not speak Mandarin, but my wife does. But even to my ears, I can tell that both children are getting more focused instruction in Chinese, simply by the greater comfort and comprehension I see when they speak to or listen to other Chinese speakers.
The decision of these two teachers to come to AIM was a key factor in our enrolling our kids there.
-- Re: Academic pressure. There is definitely a focus on learning and adhering to Montessori lesson plans at AIM, but it is far from what I would describe as "academic pressure." Rather, as parents we are presented during parent/teacher meetings with a progress report of how our children are doing in multiple categories. If a child is doing very well in some areas yet not as advanced in others, that is noted and the focus of their days may be shifted - but there is no pressure to "keep up with the class." It seems very child-oriented, i.e. each child learning at their own pace. That said, I'm continually amazed at how much the kids can do at such an early age - cutting up and distributing snacks, drawing/labeling maps of the world, setting the lunch table and cleaning up afterwards. And our older child is reading and writing at a fantastic level.
The final comment would be that we are simply big fans of the staff as a whole. The school's director is someone whose approach to child development, language instruction and community building is one that we have grown to trust a great deal. So we're quite happy. Christopher
We have been thrilled by our kids' progress in Chinese since this summer when the school changed from a trilingual to bilingual program. All in all, we are very happy with GMIS and will keep our kids there for a while. GMIS parent
I've found no less than 4 bilingual Chinese schools in Berkeley/Emeryville area. I have visited PRINTS already, but wanted some comments about the other three: Global Montessori, American International Montessori and Shu Ren. Have seen lots of pre-school posts. We would be starting at the K level and we're interested in impressions of a school that seems to be solid/well enrolled enough to stick with for years. Our daughter has very little experience with Mandarin. Incoming K-parent
I have a long-standing interest in foreign languages, linguistics and bilingual education. When considering the right school for our only child, my husband and I looked at a broad swath of highly recommended schools in the Bay Area. We visited both Spanish and Mandarin language immersion schools; and we even spent a couple of preschool years at a Spanish-English bilingual language school. A number of the other schools we looked at were quite good, but we can state unequivocally that Shu Ren is the absolute best we've seen. I was a little hesitant before starting the year: although I speak three languages fluently, neither my husband nor I have any knowledge of Mandarin (with two busy careers and no nanny, we weren't anticipating a lot of extra time to devote to learning the language). But our Kindergartner is thriving in a warm, loving environment filled with rich learning experiences (academically and socially), a broad-based educational framework, and strong, creative and professional teachers and administrators -- We couldn't be happier and we are so grateful that we found Shu Ren.
Please google it to make sure but in case it's handy, I think their number is 510-981-0291. Best wishes, Happy Parent of a 5-yr Old
I'm a parent of two at American International Montessori (AIM) and now also help run admissions at the school. When I was searching for Mandarin programs 5 years ago, there was just one in the East Bay. Now parents have a range of choices so it's great to go and visit the different programs and get a feel for each.
What sets our program apart is our highly experienced team of teachers who have all worked intimately with our Director, Ernie Mahr-- some for near a decade or more. Ernie has 16 years of experience running trilingual Montessori programs in the East Bay, and now at his own school, he has brought together his dream team of teachers who share his vision-- with the same academic focus you would expect in a great Montessori program, but with a more rigorous language acquision model in two separate programs, Mandarin and Japanese. There is no language experience required if you are starting in the kindergarten year.
As an incoming kindergartener, your daughter would join our Mandarin program for 3-6 year olds which is a total immersion environment from 9am to 1pm, then has an English component in the afternoon. She would eventually graduate to our Elementary program which is taught in English in the morning, then intensive Mandarin in the afternoons.
We would welcome an opportunity to speak with you about our program for your daughter. We enroll year-round and tours are available several times a week. We have a terrific program and staff, and the support of many families who are committed long- term to AIM. Please do not hesitate to contact us at 510 868 1815 or via email at info@AIMmontessori.com. You can find more information on our website at www.AIMmontessori.com. Sincerely, H.L.
Am wondering if anyone has any ideas or referrals for a bilingual/immersion preschool that teaches Chinese. I just visited Starlite Child Development Center in downtown Oakland (they have a sister campus at East Bay Academy). Just saw some old reviews here noting there's not much communication and there's a lack of parental involvement. (The Director said it's to facilitate the child's comfort level with the staff and school.) Wondering if anyone can share about their/their child's experience at either. Thanks! Eesa
I am looking for a Mandarin immersion program for my 4-year-old son in Berkeley/Oakland area. Can anyone recommend either a kindergarten or a summer camp that provides such programs?
What other Mandarin immersion preschool options are out there? PRINTS (esp from other local Emeryville parents), the new Shu Ren? What else?
Lastly, what options are there if GMIS too difficult a commute for us - do other families carpool? (I can do the afternoon commute, but not morning.)
I am looking for a Mandarin program for my 3 year old. Preferably in the Oakland area. I have checked in with Albany Chinese school, the closest one I've found so far. Does anyone have any insight into their curriculum or know of any other schools? Wendy
Is there a Manadarin Bilingual School or immersion program in the East Bay? I know there is the Chinese International School in San Francisco. Are there any other options to help teach a non-native child Mandarin in a formal setting? Thanks. cymrick
Hello -- Wondering if anyone is familiar with any Cantonese-English bilingual preschools in Berkeley, Oakland, Emeryville or Albany. I have only been able to find Mandarin language ones. Thanks!
I'm interested in finding a daycare or preschool which is run in Chinese (Cantonese or Mandarin) for my 2-yr.-old. Can anybody recommend one in the East Bay? Lisa
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