A Guide to Learning Higher Chinese in School

Being proficient in various languages is one of the most valuable abilities you can acquire. It’s an excellent tool to have on hand, especially if you’re applying for further education or entering the job market.

Apart from English, Chinese is the most commonly spoken language in the world. And, as the globe becomes more interconnected than ever, learning Chinese might be advantageous. You might also encourage your children to study the language or enrol them in a Chinese language programme.

The Higher Chinese class is one such example. Enrolling your children in such a programme will help them become more fluent in Chinese, eventually offering more prospects than they previously imagined.

If you’re still unclear if your child should study Higher Chinese, this article will explain what it is and what it entails.

What exactly is Higher Chinese?

Higher Chinese is essentially advanced Chinese instruction for pupils. It is an elective topic available to primary and secondary students. Higher Chinese, according to the Ministry of Education, will allow students with a higher aptitude for the Chinese language to learn at a higher level to increase their standards. It also allows for higher-order thinking in the language because it primarily focuses on comprehension.

How Does it Differ From Ordinary Chinese?

Higher Chinese is more sophisticated. It has around 20% to 30% more vocabulary to master per chapter than Standard Chinese. It also emphasises on writing and understanding. Students are frequently assessed solely for those two, with no listening or spoken components.

As such, learning higher Chinese comes with a greater burden. Most schools require three more classes since extra compositions are needed for students. In addition, it is more stringent in terms of spelling, phrase and grammatical formation, and understanding. All of these outcomes would imply more examinations and exams.

Aside from the idioms that they are normally evaluated on, pupils will learn many phrases and texts. Moreover, they must cope with summarising lengthy texts.

They will require a strong command of grammar as well as a solid foundation in Chinese vocabulary to write successfully. You will be expected to write quickly.

When Can Students Begin Learning Higher Chinese?

Most schools begin teaching Higher Chinese Language in Primary 5. However, some institutions offer it at an earlier level, such as St. Hilda’s Primary School, where kids in Primary 2 can choose to take Higher Chinese.

Is it Necessary to Learn Higher Chinese?

The majority of primary schools provide higher Chinese. They will, however, only allow you to attend the course if you are in Primary 4 or 5 standard Chinese and have at least a 70 mark grade.

When your child enters secondary school, the requirements become more demanding. If your kid ranks in the top 11% to 30% of their class with an A* mark in Chinese, they will be entitled to pursue Higher Chinese. They are also eligible if they have merit in the PSLE for Higher Chinese or are in the top 10% of the PSLE.