Mandarin bilingual program links students to their heritage

Public, Catholic systems offer learning in eight languages, which gives kids an edge, expert says.

By Candice So, Edmonton Journal August 2, 2012
 
  Megan Tsang, 16, gives a speech in both Mandarin and Cantonese during the Edmonton Chinese Bilingual Education Association awards ceremony at City Hall. Megan has been taking both Mandarin and English since she was in kindergarten.
Megan Tsang, 16, gives a speech in both Mandarin and Cantonese during the Edmonton Chinese Bilingual Education Association awards ceremony at City Hall. Megan has been taking both Mandarin and English since she was in kindergarten.

Photograph by: Supplied , Edmonton Journal

EDMONTON – Stephen Tsang is proud of his children.

Tsang, an immigrant from Hong Kong, has been living in Canada for the past three decades. He speaks mostly Cantonese Chinese and English. But his daughter Megan and his son Michael are trilingual, fluent in English and both Cantonese and Mandarin, two dialects of Chinese.

“I’m really content,” says Tsang, the vice-president of the Edmonton Chinese Bilingual Education Association, a parents’ group dedicated to bringing Mandarin into local public schools. “English is still their first tongue, and my kids still talk to each other in English, but … they can switch back and forth from Mandarin and Cantonese.”

Read more…  Article provided by Mary Ann Herrera.

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