Summer Chinese Language Learning Ideas

Looking for some ways to help your child retain their Chinese language skills over the summer?  Here are a few ideas:

  • Have your child watch a Chinese video a few times a week, even if your child doesn’t know everything they are saying it is good to be hearing the language.  Video links are available on the Bei Dou Xing website by following this link.
  • Play music with Chinese lyrics for your child to listen to while doing other things around the house.  There are some good CDs for kids available online.  Here are a couple examples that are available on Amazon.com:  “50 Timeless Tunes: Traditional Chinese Children’s Songs” and “Learn Chinese by singing kids’ songs–The Ultimate Collection of Popular Children Songs’ Chinese Version
  • Have your child keep a Chinese journal daily, weekly or monthly.  Tip: Take pictures of summertime activities or memories and put them in a box.  At journal time have your child select a picture from the box to write about, you can tape the photo into their journal.  This makes a fun memory book to look back on next summer. 
  • Visit a Chinese restaurant – strike up a conversation with the staff or look through the menu for familiar words
  • Bring your shopping list to United Noodles or another Asian supermarket – browse the aisles and have your child listen in on the conversations around you to see if they know what is being said, look for familiar words on the packages, and pick up a few groceries while you’re there!
  • Bring out the flashcards from school once a week or once a month.
  • Let your child pick out a “just right” level Chinese book from the Hennepin County Library – several libraries have large Chinese sections, including Edina and Ridgedale.  They also sometimes offer Chinese story time and other cultural activities (for example, Origami Fun on May 17th at Penn-Lake Library).  Visit http://www.hclib.org/pub/events/ for more info.
  • For kids in grades K-2, pull out the books that your child made in kindergarten and have them read a couple out loud to you each week.
  • Find a classmate or two and make your own Chinese book club – have the kids read the book and get together to discuss it (it doesn’t even matter if they discuss the book as long as they speak some Chinese)
  • Enroll in one of the XinXing enrichment classes through Hopkins Community Ed – in addition to Chinese immersion camps for each grade level there are summer courses offered on a variety of fun topics that will expose your child to Chinese culture and new interests.  For more info go to https://hopkins.thatscommunityed.com/courses/youth-summer-camp-royal/xinxing-enrichment-1