Chinese Link: Beginning Chinese
For the first course in the beginning Chinese sequence. For learning Mandarin Chinese. Recognizing that the world is becoming increasingly interlinked and globalized, the goal of the Chinese Link: project is to integrate the "5Cs" principles of the National Standards for Foreign Language Education - Communication, Cultures, Comparisons, Connections and Communities - throughout the program. By incorporating the "5Cs," Chinese Link, 2e provides a much needed new approach for the teaching and learning of Chinese language in the 21st century. The program aims to help beginners develop their communicative competence in the four basic skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing, while gaining competence in Chinese culture, exercising their ability to compare aspects of different cultures, making connections to their daily life and building links among communities. Chinese Link, 2e is available in two volumes (Level 1 / Part 1 and Level 1 / Part 2) in both traditional and simplified character editions.
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Chinese Link Review for High school curriculum
I teach high school level (grades 9-12) Chinese language at Oakland Catholic High School. It is an all-girls catholic school. I have been teaching Mandarin there for four years. I use a textbook called “Chinese Link (Zhong Wen Tian Di)” for my program.
The textbook “Chinese Link” was written by Carnegie Mellon University Chinese language faculty. This book is designed for college level students to learn Chinese mandarin. The series contains Level one and Level two with choices of traditional characters or simplified characters. Each level textbook can be purchased as either one complete book or two part books. The first level, either traditional or simplified version, book has both versions of characters listed in the new vocabulary and at the back of the book. In the second level, both versions of the characters are listed together, which is very easy for student to reference two versions of the characters.
At the college level, learning is designed for students to in one year sections. Using this book in high school level is more difficult. Therefore, I chose the two part textbooks. Each part is used for one year. The first level is an excellent beginners’ book for college and high school students. The topics are appropriate for all students. Since it is mainly focused on college life, it is not as practical for high school students. Teachers will need to adapt the vocabulary to be more applicable and suitable for high school students.
Teachers need to make sure students have a solid level one foundation before continuing onto the second level textbook. It might be a big challenge for high school level students. Some students might get discouraged with the increasing amount of vocabulary and college campus focused topics.
The textbook clearly explains Chinese grammar rules. The workbook exercises are fine for the college level, but might seem a little too hard for high school level students. Additionally audio CDs accompanying the textbook are available for purchase. The same audio recordings are also available online. Therefore the school/students choosing not to purchase CDs can save money. There are also some free practice activities available for students online.