Language Learning

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, it goes to his heart.

Nelson Mandela

Our world is growing smaller and our children will live in a time where doing business with people from all over the world is commonplace. As such, we believe equipping them with the language and cultural knowledge to succeed is vitally important.

At Brighton College (Singapore), we offer two languages: Chinese (Mandarin) and French.

Pre-Nursery, Nursery and Reception

In Pre-Prep, from Pre-Nursery to Reception, Mandarin is taught through the diligent effort of our teaching team.

In each learning area / Year group we endeavour for there to be a fluent Mandarin Speaker. In these classes, an English and Chinese approach to teaching supports natural language acquisition by interchanging between English and Mandarin throughout the day. Across the school, Mandarin-speaking teachers and Teaching Assistants use Mandarin to speak to the children wherever possible.

It is a fluid and flexible approach, directed by the child’s interests and in-line with Early Years pedagogy.

Learning Languages

Year 1 - to Year 6

Chinese (Mandarin)

In Prep, from Y1 to Y6, Mandarin is taught by our Mandarin specialist teachers at least 3 times per week in discrete lessons.

Prep School Mandarin is divided into three major groups; beginner, intermediate and near-native Chinese. Children who have learned Mandarin before joining BCS will be assessed during their first few weeks in the school and placed into their appropriate group.

In the classroom, Mandarin is taught through themes and topics. The intensity of the task is modified according to age-appropriateness, readiness and language proficiency level.

Language is presented through songs, rhymes, language games and instructional activities.

The main goal of the Mandarin World Language Program is to help students move forward along the continuum of proficiency in Mandarin and is designed to ensure that a child who joined us at Reception, will pass a YCT (Youth Chinese Test) Level 1 when they are ready. We anticipate all pupils will achieve this grade by the end of Year 6.


From Year 3 up, all children are exposed to a second additional language, through weekly French classes.