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     New Chinese Language Curriculum for Primary 1 and 2 in 2007

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Feedback from Teachers and Parents

At the same time, the pilot implementation of the new modular CL curriculum has received strong support and positive feedback from participating teachers and parents. In separate surveys administered by MOE in late September, feedback gathered from around 250 teachers involved in the pilot study was as follows:

  • 94% indicated that they strongly supported the implementation of the curriculum in all schools next year.

  •  94% indicated that they preferred the passages in the new instructional materials.

  • 93% responded that the new curriculum provided them with more opportunities to conduct interactive teaching and group work. 

  • 90% observed that students had become more interested and engaged in learning CL.

  • 87% opined that the modular approach had helped cater to the varying needs of the students.

Around 1000 parents from pilot schools were surveyed, and it was found that:

  • Close to 90% responded that they understood and identified with the objectives of the new CL curriculum.

  • 86% replied that the new curriculum had benefited their children.

  • About 85% of these parents observed that their children showed greater interest in learning CL.

  • 78% expressed that they knew how to support their children in CL learning.


Refinement to Curriculum Implementation

The pilot study has also surfaced invaluable input to be used to refine the curriculum implementation. The feedback mechanisms enhanced the interaction between curriculum planners and participating teachers. Notably, the teachers provided pointers based on classroom experiences to adjust the pitching of some passages. Dialogues with participating teachers during school visits and focus group discussions also led to the development of new resources to enhance teaching and learning. Training and resource packages were also provided for teachers who indicated that they need more assistance, for instance in the area of implementing a modular curriculum structure.
 

Schools Are Prepared to Implement the New CL Curriculum

Schools are prepared to implement the new CL curriculum next year.  For teachers from non-pilot schools, a structured training programme, comprising a 32-hour core training component on pedagogy and use of instructional materials and a variety of electives, has been implemented since 2005. The electives include the modular approach implementation and school-based curriculum design. The SEED-CL[1]  initiative launched in April 2005 has also provided these teachers with added opportunities to be acquainted with the new pedagogy. Several sharing sessions showcasing best practices in the pilot schools have also been held.

Apart from training and sharing, resources such as teaching guides, assessment guideline and digital instructional resources were also provided to schools. MOE will continue to provide schools with resources and support to help them implement the curriculum. A team of about 70 members, comprising Master Teachers, curriculum planning officers and teachers from the 25 pilot schools will assist schools in the implementation. All schools will also receive one more CL teacher by July 2007 and a second additional CL teacher by 2008.

In addition, MOE has provided schools with materials which they can use to explain the features of the new curriculum to parents. For parents looking for information to support their children¨s CL learning, MOE will upload a recommended list of age-appropriate readers onto the MOE website.

While it is inevitable that there will be some challenges encountered in the full implementation of the new curriculum, the implementation issues would be resolved as our teachers gain mastery of the new curriculum over time with the help of the team of experienced teachers and curriculum planners.
 
Background

MOE announced in July 2005 that the new CL curriculum would be implemented in all schools at Primary 1 and 2 levels from 2007. Under this curriculum, which adopts a modular approach, all students will take the Core Module which occupies approximately 70 - 80% of CL curriculum time. Students who enter school with little exposure to CL will be given support via the Bridging Module to help them catch up before they move on to the Core Module. For the students taking the Core Module only, teachers will have about 20-30% of curriculum time to develop their own school-based curriculum to meet the varying needs of their students. The modular curriculum structure also allows those who excel in CL to go beyond the Core Module by taking the Enrichment Module.

Prior to its full implementation, the new curriculum has been piloted in 25 primary schools (Annex C) at P1 and P2 levels since January this year. This was in line with the recommendations made by the Chinese Language Curriculum and Pedagogy Review Committee which highlighted the need to balance adequate preparation time, in terms of teacher training and curriculum design, with its implementation.

The pilot schools were selected to ensure an even spread of school types and students¨ home language profiles. The pilot implementation involved a comprehensive study of various aspects of the new curriculum including the modular structure, pedagogical approaches, textbook and activity book, instructional resources and students¨ learning outcomes.

 

[1] SEED-CL stands for Strategies for Effective and Engaged Development - Chinese Lanaguage

[2] BPPVS is a recognised test that has been used to measure listening vocabulary, which is generally regarded as a proxy for oral vocabulary.

[3] Gain is the difference between the mean for raw Post-Test scores and raw Pre-Test scores. Mean here refers to the average score in a group.

[4] The Mean Test Score here indicates the eventual performance of the students, taking the initial differences in abilities into consideration. It was derived using statistical covariance analysis.