At Discovery College, we use language as a medium of inquiry, providing opportunities to challenge, nurture and develop both first and second language speakers. We understand that the most conducive environment to language learning is a positive and encouraging one, wherein students have the opportunity to engage in authentic and meaningful learning experiences. Language learning occurs in three ways; as the language of instruction, as an additional language and as mother tongue.
All three of the language strands are learned across and throughout the curriculum, and each strand is an integral component of language learning. All teaching integrates the language strands of:
- Oral language – speaking and listening
- Visual language – viewing and presenting
- Written language – reading and writing
We understand that because our students come with many different language backgrounds, they will all progress at different paces. Discovery College values differentiated and varied instruction, which embraces multiple learning styles.
We consider all Discovery College teachers to be language teachers and the language development of our students to be the shared responsibility of teachers, parents and students.
All teaching and learning is driven by the idea that through language, we are encouraging intercultural awareness and new perspectives, a culture of curiosity, as well as an appreciation of the richness of our world’s diversity. We strongly believe that through this exploration of language, students develop as deeper, independent thinkers; as responsible, understanding citizens of the world; and as better communicators in our multilingual world.
Chinese is taught as the additional language in the PYP. Chinese language learning at Discovery College is delivered using a range of learning experiences, including; songs, games, labeling and other language rich activities. Where possible, connections are made with the concepts and ideas of the programme of inquiry. For more information see the Chinese curriculum overview.
Discovery College believes that mother tongue language development is crucial to maintaining cultural identity and emotional stability. While we do not offer bilingual programmes, we do recognise that strength in mother tongue supports students in learning other languages. We offer support for parent-led mother tongue groups. Within the classroom students are encouraged to use their mother tongue as a tool for understanding and as a way of sharing their knowledge with others.