GEG Chinese Literacy Development Scheme - Part 1
With Chinese as the primary medium of teaching and communication in Macau, the Foundation believes that developing literacy in Chinese is crucial to a student’s success in school. The "GEG Chinese Literacy Development Scheme” in 2016 was initiated with the objective of supporting children, parents and schools on Chinese language development for kindergarten-aged children based on evidence-based practice, and providing early intervention for children lagging behind in Chinese language acquisition. The Scheme conducted a “Parents’ Seminar Series” comprising age-appropriate sessions for the three kindergarten grades, focusing on helping parents build their child’s language skills outside the classroom.
GEG Chinese Literacy Development Scheme - Part 2
Under the "GEG Chinese Literacy Development Scheme”, students from the Scheme’s participating kindergartens were screened each year, with K3 children who were identified as lagging behind in the Chinese language being invited to receive small group intervention. The results from the intervention exercises had shown noticeable improvements in these children after having received regular intervention for one academic year. Children who received small group intervention were able to catch up to their same age peers in their Chinese language abilities, and the language skills they learned from the small group sessions could be transferred to their regular classes. Aside from their language skills being improved, results also showed that these children became more self-confident, more motivated to learn and evidently participated more actively in class.
The Three Basic Foundations of Reading
Language learning begins with reading. Parents reading with their children will not only nurture their interest in reading, but also helps to improve their vocabulary and reading ability. The three basic foundations of reading, text awareness, spoken vocabulary and story structure, shall be reinforced during shared reading; research has indicated that a child’s ability to read correlate positively to their academic success. Shared reading is an important stage of your child’s development.
The Four Tricks of Shared Reading
To encourage and motivate children to read, it is important that parents start with shared reading. There are four simple “tricks” to shared reading:
Query (問): through asking questions to pique the interest of the child, and to also allow the child space to think, recall and anticipate the story’s development, and enabling the child to express her thoughts;
Compliment (讚): encourage the child’s behaviour and attitude through constant affirmation and appreciation of the child’s participation;
Expand (充): “fill in the banks”, to help build the child’s vocabulary, and learn to express their thoughts; and
Practise (練): verbalising different sentence structures, and to strengthen what they are learning through repetition.
The Five Key Points of Reciting
After narrating a story book to children, parents may want to read through the printed text of the book again, keeping in mind the five key points introduced in the video. Doing so will help to strengthen children’s reading skills, and will continue to build on their Chinese literacy foundation.
1. Word by word: Parents can read aloud word by word, to ensure that their children get the correct pronunciation.
2. Finger pointing: Parents can have their children point to each word as they read aloud, to consolidate the concept of "one sound for one character" in Chinese language.
3. Appropriate pause: When reading a long and complex sentence, parents should pause at appropriate points, to help children understand the sentence.
4. Demonstration: Parents can recite the story first and set an example for the children. If necessary, parents should repeat the process until the children become familiar with the vocabulary and sentence patterns, before letting the children read the complete sentences by themselves.
5. Reciting the entire book: When the children have mastered the skills of reading sentences, ask them to read the same story book repeatedly for more practice.