Home Language Environment of Singaporean Chinese Families – Implications in the Early Years of Primary School (73776)

Session Information: Learning Experiences, Student Learning & Learner Diversity
Session Chair: Sara Neswald

Friday, 24 November 2023 14:45
Session: Session 4
Room: Room 607
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

The rapid shift of home language from Chinese language (CL) to English language (EL) was frequently reported in the past twenty years in Singapore. The diverse language proficiency of children entering primary schools poses great challenges to the language teachers. Parents’ support in CL learning in the first two years of the primary school was highlighted as oral language is focused in the current CL curriculum for these two levels. The current study seeks a better understanding and implications in parents’ support in CL learning before or after their children entering primary schools. 380 parents of Chinese ethnic group in Singapore were recruited in the study. Their children learn CL in preschools (aged 5 and 6) or primary schools (aged 7 and 8). Parents answered a questionnaire asking about their children’s home language environment (HLE), including parental and child’s language use at home, the various language related activities at home in EL and CL, and the availability of language resource at home in both languages, along with the demographic and background information of the family. Echoing the findings from the previous studies, we found a more EL preferred HLE from most of the surveyed families. For different age groups, different patterns of association were found among children’s language related activities, shared- activities with parents, and language preference at home. These findings indicate the possible changes in HLE when children entered primary schools. The dynamics in parents’ practices provide considerable implications in the CL teaching practices in Singapore primary schools.

Li Li, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Siaw Ee Teo, Ministry of Education, Singapore
Yingjiang Zheng, Ministry of Education, AST, & SCCL, Singapore

About the Presenter(s)
Dr Li Li is a University Postdoctoral Fellow or Instructor at Singapore Centre For Chinese Language in Singapore

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Posted by Clive Staples Lewis

Last updated: 2023-02-23 23:45:00