Thursday 21st September 2006 by C. Freeman
Chinese whispers are to be encouraged over the next few months at Brooke Weston as students will be taught the ancient language of Mandarin. Chinese teacher, Mr Wang Li Ke, has come to the UK on a ten-month exchange visit and he hopes to teach the students spoken language and the complex art of Chinese calligraphy.
Mr Wang, who is also known by his westernised name of Martin, is also hoping to get a insight into British customs and culture during his time here, as well as improving his own fluency.
He has travelled from Xiamen City in south China where he teaches English to students in his native country and observes lessons in many different schools throughout the province. He said: 'I think it will be a very great challenge here, however it is also a very good opportunity to understand the UK and the students. I am very glad to have this chance.'
Primarily Mr Wang will concentrate on spoken Mandarin, but he also hopes to show students how to write basic characters as well as explaining Chinese culture and history: 'Every character has its own special meaning and if you know the meaning, you will find that it is very easy to write and remember' he said.
He has observed some teaching sessions at Brooke Weston and has already been introduced to the Year 7,12 and 13 students he will be teaching at Brooke Weston
Mr Wang wants to make the most of his time in the UK. 'During the time here I have a lot of things to do. I will try to make use of the ten months I've got here to understand the UK and to learn much more about the school.'
Head of Modern Languages at Brooke Weston, Robert Nicholls, said 'We are delighted to have Mr Wang working with the Languages team. China is becoming an increasingly important power in the world and we need to ensure that students are better informed about the country and can start to get to grips with this challenging language. We are also hopeful that Mr Wang will be able us to establish links between students and teachers at Brooke Weston and their counterparts in a large secondary school in Xiamen.'
Mr Wang will also be working with teachers at Studfall and Kingswood primary schools introducing Chinese to children in Years 5 and 6.