3 events to promote bilingualism in September

3 events to promote bilingualism in September
Above: Preschoolers at the launch of Lianhe Zaobao's new student newspaper called 'Thumbs Up Little Junior' for pre-school children

SINGAPORE - International language experts will be gathering in Singapore from 12 to 14 September 2013 for three events to promote bilingualism.

The public will be able to attend sharing sessions and visit exhibitions to learn about innovative teaching and learning methods on the third day of the 2nd Mother Tongue Languages Symposium.

East Asia Summit (EAS) Conference on "Bilingualism - Policy and Practice" (13 to 14 September 2013)

The East Asia Summit (EAS) Conference on "Bilingualism - Policy and Practice", held on 13 and 14 September 2013, is jointly organised by the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the People's Republic of China Ministry of Education, in partnership with the National Institute of Education (NIE) and the Beijing Foreign Studies University.

The conference brings together policy-makers, academics and educators from the 18 EAS participating countries to share and discuss ideas on how the teaching and learning of second languages could play a significant role in enhancing the integration of the EAS region.

The EAS participating countries will also share their experiences in conceptualising and implementing language initiatives in their local context.

In addition, the conference seeks to encourage education collaboration among the EAS participating countries arising from these exchanges of ideas and experiences.

The conference will cover bilingualism in all levels of education, starting from pre-school education, through basic education to tertiary and adult education. The keynote speakers include Professor S Gopinathan, Adjunct Professor of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore, and Dr Han Baocheng (韩宝成), Professor of Applied Linguistics, Beijing Foreign Studies University, People's Republic of China.

Specific topics include "Bilingualism in a Globalised Age", "Challenges of Bilingualism in a Globalised Setting" and "Translating Policy into Practice".

3rd International Conference on Teaching and Learning of Chinese as a Second Language (12 to 13 September 2013)

The Singapore Centre for Chinese Language (SCCL) of the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, will also be organising the 3rd International Conference on Teaching and Learning of Chinese as a Second Language on 12 and 13 September 2013.

Themed "The Teaching of Chinese Language in a Multilingual Environment - Innovative Practice, Transformative Learning", SCCL's third International Conference on Teaching and Learning of Chinese as a Second Language aims to promote research and application of second language teaching, as well as provide practitioners of Chinese Language teaching and learning a platform to share their experiences in the field.

The conference is co-organised with Ngee Ann Polytechnic, and supported by the Singapore Chinese Teachers' Union and the Singapore Middle School Chinese Teachers' Association.

Keynote speakers include Professor Cornelius C Kubler, Stanfield Professor of Asian Studies, Williams College, USA, and member of the International Academic Advisory Panel for SCCL, Professor Tse Shek Kam (谢锡金), Director of the Centre for Advancement of Chinese Language Education and Research, The University of Hong Kong, member of the International Academic Advisory Panel for SCCL and member of the International Advisory Panel for the Lee Kuan Yew Fund for Bilingualism (LKYFB), Professor Lu Jianming (陆俭明), Department of Chinese Language and Literature, Peking University, People's Republic of China, and Professor Wen Qiufang (文秋芳), Director of the National Research Centre for Foreign Language Education, Beijing Foreign Studies University, People's Republic of China.

2nd Mother Tongue Languages Symposium (14 September 2013)

The 2nd Mother Tongue Languages Symposium, open to the public, will be held on 14 September 2013 at the Suntec Singapore Exhibition and Convention Centre.

Themed "Mother Tongue Languages - A Garden for Joyful Discoveries", the symposium aims to promote bilingual education and share Singapore schools' and the community's efforts in promoting Mother Tongue Languages through creative and engaging programmes.

The public can register for the 10 sharing sessions on teaching and learning of Mother Tongue Languages (MTL) as well as the two keynote lectures by Professor Twila Tardif, Associate Dean for Social Sciences and Professor at the Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, and member of the International Advisory Panel for the LKYFB, and Assistant Professor Yow Wei Quin (邱慧娟) from Singapore University of Technology and Design.

Those interested can register at www.mtls2013.com.sg. Admission is free.

There are also 28 exhibition booths on innovative teaching methods and community programmes to nurture children to be active learners and proficient users of their mother tongue languages. Members of the public can register for the symposium at www.mtls2013.com.sg.

Promoting Bilingualism in Singapore and the EAS Region

Bilingual education is a cornerstone of the Singapore education system.

The exchanges of ideas and experiences among participants at the upcoming events to promote bilingualism will encourage and strengthen the teaching and learning of mother tongue languages not only in Singapore, but also across the region.

cynloh@sph.com.sg

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