Chinese Language & Culture Programme

YCIS has offered Chinese learning since the school was established in 1932. As a visionary led international school, YCIS strives to unite the best elements of Eastern and Western traditions and practices. Learning Chinese language and culture in Yew Chung helps to open doors for our students to learn about the Eastern world, fusing cross-cultural thinking and open-mindedness.

Primary Teacher Miss Lu about Chinese Language at YCIS:

Students learn to read, write and speak fluently in Putonghua through curricula tailored for both native and non-native speakers. The Chinese Language and Culture Programme runs from Kindergarten all the way through to graduation and helps students attain a strong command of the Chinese language after two to three years.

Within each Kindergarten and Primary School classroom, two fully qualified Co-Teachers, one Western and one Chinese, work together at teaching and share all responsibilities over the care and education of students in class. They plan and work together to provide students with a variety of learning experiences and help students develop English and Chinese communication skills in a bi-cultural and fully immersive bilingual environment.

Chinese as a First Language (CFL)
In addition to training up students' basic skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing, CFL also grooms students to have awareness and understanding of Chinese culture. The programme emphasises the nurture of students’ interest in learning Chinese language, good study habits and self-learning ability as well as providing the opportunities for students to take the initiative to explore and engage in team learning so as to inspire students' rich imagination, creativity, visual thinking skills, logical thinking ability and appreciative capability. In that way, students can create a positive, diverse and healthy life.

Chinese as an Additional Language (CAL)
Chinese as an Additional Language not only stimulates students' interest in learning Chinese, but also allows them to be exposed to and understand Chinese traditional and modern cultures. This programme focuses on training students' ability to grasp preliminary Chinese, for example conversation with others in Chinese, recognising Chinese characters (including pronunciation, strokes, explanation, and usage), mastery of verbal vocabulary, and reading Chinese articles and books at a general level.


Chinese Studies
Chinese Studies is a programme YCIS Shanghai developed in 2013 and is a regular programme from Year 1 to Year 9 students. The learning topics integrate subjects from history and geography to visual art, performing arts and music. The programme has a strong focus both on today's China and China's cultural heritage, and it is designed to emphasise students’ participation and focuses on hands-on experiences. Not only does YCIS Shanghai provide Chinese language studies at various levels, but it also organises cultural field trips, Chinese culture workshops, and traditional festival celebrations and events for the students.

Vicky He

“Language is a tool of communication, and it is also a vehicle of culture. Students’ journey through YCIS’s unique bilingual learning environment, and the co-teaching by our Chinese and Western teachers effectively puts children in a favourable language environment, in which they are able to study the two primary languages of the East and the West together. In addition to broadening their cultural perspective in an international context, YCIS fosters students’ cultural appreciation and critical-thinking skills, helping them to form cross-cultural openness. As a result, students easily adapt to the globalised world, moving within both Eastern and Western cultures with ease and confidence, becoming true global citizens.

The chemistry between our Western and Chinese Co-Teachers in the same classroom perfectly demonstrates the theory of 1 + 1> 2. For example, they would compare Marco Polo and the Silk Road, Egypt’s Pyramids and China’s Great Wall, the Western Harp and Chinese guqin, oil painting and ink painting, Italy’s Venice and China's water villages, the differences of family relation appellations in both Chinese and international languages, and many other aspects. Students learn and use Chinese and English, with Chinese culture as the anchor, understanding different cultures in a global setting in order to compare and contrast, and to experience and develop understanding. And thus, students not only grasp and gain knowledge about Chinese culture as a whole, they also form interdisciplinary links and cross-cultural vision, which they are able to integrate into all areas of learning with heightened comprehension.”

Vicky He
Chinese Superintendent of YCIS Shanghai

To learn more about our Chinese Language and Culture Programme, contact our Admissions Team by clicking here.


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