2017 STARTALK Mandarin Language Summer Camp
For a tenth year, UMass Boston and STARTALK offer a 15-day, intensive Mandarin Language Summer Camp to Massachusetts students in grades 6-12. Four levels of Chinese language classes are led by experienced instructors and held at Greater Boston, MA.
Applications are required for participation.
Camp-wide Theme for Summer 2017
This year we will focus the language curriculum around the theme “School Life and Social Activities,” designed to build on students’ everyday knowledge, daily experience, and individual interests. The summer language courses will prepare students to converse about themselves, their school schedules, and personal activities. Each class’s sub-theme will provide vocabulary, dialogue topics, and group or personal projects that will enable students to learn quickly and at their appropriate level. The academic language content is complimented with elective choices in Chinese art and poetry, computer activities, cultural games, and ping pong. Along with the camp-wide theme and planned activities, the curriculum will facilitate students speaking Mandarin to each other and with native speakers. A coordinated series of language-exchange meetings with high school students from Beijing will provide opportunity to converse and participate in school/language-based activities (without having to travel to China). The exchange of language as students meet new friends is intended to get students to start-talking and promote motivation to become life-long learners of Mandarin.
Novice Chinese, Part 1
“At School with Friends”
This course is designed for students with little or no Chinese language learning experience. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to properly introduce themselves to teachers and friends. Students will learn school schedules, the calendar and telling time, and will converse about the subjects they like in simple conversations. Students will make comparisons between customs and activities of schools in China and America. A summer goal is to develop basic skills in listening and speaking, and to begin character recognition and writing using the correct stroke order.
Novice Chinese, Part 2
(Mid-High level) “School and Social Activities”
This course is designed for students with 1-2 years of prior Chinese language experience. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to converse with basic fluency about Chinese horoscopes, meeting friends, and interesting places in their towns. They will be able to express their individual characteristics and interests, as well as investigate relevant cultural differences of school life in the U.S. and China. In addition to improving skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing, this course will strengthen student language capacity by increasing vocabulary and expanding topics to promote conversational speaking.
Intermediate Chinese, Part 1
“School and Community Life”
This course is designed for students with 2-3 years of prior Chinese language experience. Upon the completion of this course students will be able to share school and community resources (such as getting around town) in comparatively fluent conversational manner at near to normal speed. In addition to improving skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing, this course will strengthen students’ language capacity by using broader topics to promote an exchange of information and conversational speaking. Students will share the unique elements of individual academic, extra-curricular and social agendas, describe their schools’ offerings and amenities, and navigate their communities. As they learn about each other they will make comparisons to schools and summer programs in China.
Intermediate Chinese, Part 2
(Mid-High level) “School Plans to Study Abroad”
This course is designed for students with 3-4 years of prior Chinese language experience in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to demonstrate their ability to conduct meaningful communication in real-world situations in given contexts. Since many students who study Chinese often have the opportunity to study abroad, the course scenario will be planning to go abroad to study and live in a Chinese city. With cultural objectives fully integrated and a focus on satisfying personal interests, students will be able to express their prospective plans, make suggestions, compare living in the two countries, share and discuss important ideas while investigating and planning their personal goals.
Post-Daily Program Offering
From 4:00-5:45pm, Monday through Thursday, we offer after-school activities to support learning Chinese culture, games and computer-based projects. Our hope is to extend learning with additional team projects as well as accommodate family commuting schedules.
Note: Friday dismissal time is 4 p.m., with no after-school classes.