Heritage Language Programs - Chinese

Lexington Chinese School

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Address: 3100 Tates Creek Rd, Lexington, KY 40502

Web address: http://www.lexingtonchineseschool.org/

Contact person

Name: Yang Wang

Title: Chinese teacher

Address: 504 Lanarkshire Place, Lexington, KY 40509

Email: yan.wang@fayette.kyschools.us

Telephone: (859) 963-2756

Languages/dialects taught: Standard Chinese, Mandarin, and Cantonese

Grades taught:
• Pre K-12 for Chinese heritage learners
• Pre K-1 for American students
• 2 adult classes (beginning and intermediate)

Program Description

Purposes and goals of the program: Lexington Chinese Schools, a non-profit organization, is committed to serving the Lexington community by providing an encouraging and unique environment for learning Chinese language and culture. While English is the most widely used language globally, Chinese is the most spoken language in the world. Between these two languages lies an enormous gap that separates western and eastern cultures and forms a daunting barrier for communication and understanding. It is this gap that we seek to help bridge.

The program operates on weekends year round. Classes are provided to anyone who is interested in Chinese language and cultural arts regardless of ethnic and cultural background.

Program origin: 1984


Parents' expectations for the program: Parent's expect their kids to maintain the Chinese language and culture they have and gain proficiency in Chinese.


Instructors' and administration's expectations for the program: Staff encourage the students to be interested in Chinese and practice in daily life.


• Born in China, or other areas where Chinese is the native language, either both parents are Chinese or adopted children from China
• Born in the U.S (Second or more generation immigrants, one parent is Chinese)

How the program identifies heritage speakers: We separate the students into two groups when they enroll in the program: Those who speak Chinese at home, and those who do not speak Chinese at home.


Number of instructors in the program: 12

Languages in which instructors are proficient: Mandarin Chinese

Credentials: 2 teachers have a PhD in Education; 2 have a teaching certification in the U.S; 2 have taught Chinese in middle schools in China; the others have a B.A. or above degrees in other fields.

Professional development opportunities instructors have: We arrange at least 2 seminars each year for teachers.


Total contact hours per week: Once per week

Student grouping: Students are grouped by ages, Chinese proficiency, and home language background.

Language skills

Skills developed by the program:
• Listening: Understand native speakers' daily conversation and teacher's teaching mandarin during the class.
• Speaking: can speak Chinese fluently and retell stories
• Reading: can read short stories
• Writing: can write letters, notes, and short essays


Aspects of culture taught: Geography, history, festivals, customs, arts and dance, traditions

Materials: We use <Chinese> edited by Jinan University in China. There are a total of 12 textbooks, 24 workbooks, and 12 teacher guides.

Technology used for instruction: We use computers, Power Point, and video.


Assessments used to evaluate students' progress:
• Weekly quizzes
• Mid-term tests
• Final exams
• Teacher observations
• Teacher performance based-tests

What the program has in place

Financial support the program receives:
• Religious organization
• Ethnic/cultural organization
• Tuition
• Parents

Assistance or funding the program would like to receive: We need to connect with professional organizations. We hope to get more information about heritage language teaching in the United States.

Special challenges and insights

Challenges the program has experienced: We are trying to make the teaching more formal and standardized.

Insights the program has in place: We developed teaching objectives from preschool to grade 12, which provide guidelines for teachers. Each teacher teaches one textbook.

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