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Ministry solicits public opinion about English instruction at kindergartens

Update: July, 29/2018 - 20:00
Native English-speaking teachers help children in kindergarten learn English more effectively. — VNA/VNS Photo
Viet Nam News

HCM CITY — The use of native English-speaking teachers at kindergartens would improve children’s speaking skills, participants at a seminar held in HCM City on July 27 said.

Organised by the Ministry of Education and Training, the seminar heard comments from educators from southern provinces on a draft for an English-language programme at kindergartens.

Experts said the modern creative methodology used in teaching English would also be preferable to more traditional methods.

Dr Nguyễn Bá Minh, head of the Kindergarten Education Department at the Ministry of Education and Training, said the programme would help 3- to 6-year-olds become more familiar with English.

The children would study basic communication skills, the alphabet, numbers and colours, and use animals, toys and other objects, through songs and games.

“That is a convenient step in preparing for learning English in primary schools,” he said.

However, kindergartens face a shortage of teachers and funding sources, according to Trần Thị Hoàng Dung, deputy head of Vị Thanh City’s Sub-Department of Education and Training in Hậu Giang Province.

"Vị Thanh City has around three foreign language centres with just a few native English-speaking teachers”, because it is difficult to hire qualified people, she said.

Many seminar participants said there were still no detailed regulations from the ministry about the collection of fees for English courses at kindergartens.

Trương Thị Việt Liên, former head of Kindergarten Education Division at the HCM City’s Department of Education and Training, said that foreign teachers should be trained in child psychology and physiology and obtain certificates in kindergarten education.

"Most foreign teachers at foreign languages centres in the city have certificates in kindergarten education," she said.

Minh said the kindergartens should employ teachers on a flexible schedule and use teaching methods based on the condition in each locality. The programme for teaching English should also be assessed carefully.

Opinions expressed at the seminar would be considered in the final draft of the programme, he added. — VNS

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