This week saw the launch of “ Ni hao, Zhongguo / Hello China!”, a new magazine to promote the spread of Chinese language teaching in Irish secondary schools.
Post-Brexit, Ireland will be the last English-speaking country in Europe. Equipping our students and young graduates with the language skills that are necessary in a more globalized world is crucial. More and more languages are becoming available in Irish schools - Russian and Japanese have already been added to the Leaving Certificate curriculum, and Chinese is now available as a short course subject.
However, it is important that the resources are put in place to increase the teaching of Chinese in schools nationwide. The Irish Association of Chinese Teachers in association with the Confucius Institute of Ireland want to facilitate this and encourage the widespread adoption of Chinese language into schools across the country. As part of their efforts, they are producing this new magazine, which will be published three times per year.
The magazine features articles by both students and teachers on aspects of the Chinese language and culture, lesson plans, games and suggested classroom activities. Future editions will also have sections on tech, including apps for learning Mandarin. Copies of the magazine are being distributed to every secondary school in Ireland following its launch at the Galway Education Centre.
Launching the magazine, Ciaran Cannon, T.D. said, “Education is very highly valued in both Ireland and China. Ensuring our young people have access to a world-class education is a major priority for both countries. China is one of our largest trading partners but is it equally important that we forge strong cultural links between our countries.
Over 3,000 Chinese students travel to Ireland each year and it is important that we encourage and facilitate Irish students to travel there also. This magazine is a very valuable resource for schools in fostering an interest in the language and culture of China and is a call to action to our teachers, our Department of Education and our Government to support our young people in gaining a greater proficiency in the Chinese language.”
Further information on the publication can be obtained from the editorial team by emailing [email protected]