K-12 Blended Learning Program

Instruction > Teachers' Reflections

Xiaoyu (Annie) Liu -
I taught in the k-12 project as a lead tutor for one year. My students’ grade level varied from grade 3 to grade 12. I found most of my students’ learning was effective because they really remembered the words and sentences I taught them. The 1-1 online learning is very suitable for students who are interested in Chinese and are eager to practice it with native Chinese speaker. It is a great chance for the student to realize his/her own strength and shortcoming. As a language instructor, I also learned from the 1-1 online learning that I can use multiple ways to help the students learn, including online teaching techniques, online resources and videos. I was especially satisfied with my high school students, who can be more focused during the tutoring. One grade 10 student, who I taught for one year, made a great progress in his speaking.

One thing that I found interesting is that sometimes I can also learn from my students. Once I was teaching my student how to tell different amount of money. I first showed him pictures of Chinese paper money and coins and had him follow me distinguishing them. Then I gave him pictures of American paper money and coins to practice. I asked him, “What’s this?” and pointed to one of the coins. He answered me, “50 cents. (In Chinese)” I paused for one second in confusion, and asked him “really?” for I never heard of 50-cent coins. He laughed and told me about the uncommon coins in American coin system. Great! I learned more about American culture from my student!

Michelle Huang -
It has been approximately a year since I taught for this project. I first taught elementary school students from grade 3 to 5. This past year, I taught students from grade 6 to 8. The Flagship K-12 Blended Learning Pilot Project is useful and beneficial to students who are willing to learn a new language. I believe the learning is effective because the blended learning model is personalized and allows students to have more control of time, place and pace of their learning. I think that 1-on-1 online learning suits most of the students well because students are able to ask questions at any time during the session for clarifications and explanations. Furthermore, since the learning pace and the willingness to practice speaking the language are often viewed as the challenges for language students, during 1-on-1 online learning session, students tend to be more willing to speak and practice what they have learn compared to a classroom setting. As a language instructor, I have learned the importance of delivering clear and concise messages to students.

For students learning a new language, each sentence they learn is a like template; they familiarize themselves with that format. In addition, patience, practice and encouragement are often needed because learning a new language may be discouraging yet fulfilling. Moreover, like any other subjects, the practice of utilizing the language such as reading, writing, listening and speaking are crucial to students learning a new language. There was a moment during a session with my student when she asked how could I remember all those Chinese characters, the pinyin and the meaning. Despite the fact that I am a heritage speaker, I also learned Chinese just like Jericho students. I told her, learning a new language requires patience and practice. As long as a student takes the challenge to learn a new language, becoming fluent in that language is attainable. Overall, I am satisfied with my students’ progress and I hope they continue to learn, grow and succeed as language students.

Zijun Sun -
I believe that the blended learning platform was effective for most of my students. My students can use most of the vocabulary words and sentence structures that I taught them in the assessment in each section. I think that the one-on-one online learning format suits most of my students, especially the visual and auditory learners, very well. I found that the students I taught in this program were able to learn the materials more quickly than students I have taught in the past. As a bonus, my students were truly interested in learning Mandarin Chinese and were always willing to practice it. As a language instructor, I learned that it is important to find out students’ strengths and weaknesses in order to improve the effectiveness of one’s teaching methods. Although I initially had difficulty creating lessons that engaged all learner types, I was eventually able to use multiple teaching strategies. For example, since kinesthetic learners need to be more active, I created fun activities such as “I Say You Circle”, “I Circle You Say”, Bingo, matching, and storytelling. I was also able to incorporate online resources such as videos and pictures into lessons in order to help students stay engaged during the online session. Furthermore, I learned that keeping students in an environment supportive of their Mandarin Chinese studies is very important. I suggested that students play games that help them consolidate what they have learned so they can have fun and review simultaneously.

I am very satisfied with my students’ progress. One of my third-grade students, who I taught for one year, has shown great progress in her speaking, reading, and writing skills. Now she can talk about topics such as name, age, grade, household size, zodiac sign, the place where she lives, school, pets, hobbies, and favorite color(s) pertaining to herself and her family members. In addition, she can talk about an object by describing its size, color, and cuteness. My student is also able to recite The Very Hungry Caterpillar entirely in Chinese and recite two Chinese classic poems: “O Geese” by Luo Bing Wang and “Spring Dawn” by Meng Hao Ran. Furthermore, she can use the sentence structures she has learned, and she can type her biographical information in Chinese characters.

One of my students loves to draw, especially on the board before the class starts. I used her artwork as an opportunity to practice describing objects. I found that using students’ artwork made students more willing and eager to engage in the lesson. After my student finished drawing, I saved a screenshot of the picture. Afterwards, I asked her to describe what she drew. This is what she stated: “她的褲子是藍色的。她的頭髮是黑色的。她的頭髮很短。他的腳很大。她的手很小。她的眼睛又黑又圓。我喜歡畫畫。”

As you can see, she was able to use what she had learned so far when describing her drawing. My student particularly liked this activity because I was able to reinforce what she learned while also approving of her artwork.


Xiaoyue Yang -
The blended learning platform was effective for most of my students. My students were able to understand instructions such as “please write…”, “what does this mean”, “how do you say…” and “what is this”. They were also able to recite some classical Chinese poems, tell a story, name some colors, animals and fruits, answer basic questions such as “what is your name?”, “what is this?”, “what does this mean?”, and talk about what they like and dislike. My students were also able to recognize and write basic strokes, (一、丨、丿、㇏、丶、㇀), compound strokes, and some Chinese characters (一二三四五六七八九十爸妈弟日月天水红绿).

I think that the one-on-one learning format is great for K-2 students because each student can get their teacher’s full attention throughout the session. Of course, sometimes it can be difficult to manage students’ behavior and have them focus on the lesson! I learned that students have different personalities and learning styles. Some students need frequent praise to be encouraged to practice speaking and writing. Other students are kinesthetic learners who need to physically do something like drawing, circling the radicals, writing characters, singing and dancing. Therefore, being supportive and encouraging to all students is very important. I also became accustomed to creating different types of learning activities for students with various learning styles. I am satisfied with my students’ progress. It is not easy for K-2 graders to learn such a difficult foreign language online, and I am proud of my students’ accomplishments.

Hongrong Chen -
I taught the Jericho K-12 Blended Pilot Program for one semester. I had the pleasure of teaching students at different grade levels, including grades 3, 5 and 10. Due to this experience, I learned that in order to evaluate whether a lesson is truly effective, one needs to focus on lesson plans, teaching approaches, and learner’s motivation. Effective language learning also requires learning content that appropriately corresponds to each student’s proficiency level. If the level of difficulty of a particular learning material exceeds a student’s ability, it can create significant teaching obstacles. I also learned that when teaching in an online class format, it is important to assess what a learner has just learned and if students can produce target output. I helped the learner memorize the contour of each tone. After a semester, my student was able to pick up on the differences between the tones and improve her speaking significantly.

I also learned that student motivation is another significant element that influences teaching efficiency. Less motivated students may use the computer to do other things while attending their online class. This is why it is important to know your students and get a feel for their overall level of motivation. Before beginning with online sessions, I had the opportunity to meet with one of my 5th grade students. As I got to know her, I learned that she likes sculptures. Upon learning this, I shared two pictures of ancient Chinese sculptures every time before a lesson begins. Not only does this grab her attention and keep her interested throughout the lesson, it also sets a good tone for the class.

Jennifer Kuo -




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