Chinese American Students And The Communication Gap

From Sing Tao Daily via New America Media:

At the end of his first day of school in 1995, Xiaohua Zhang, a nine-year boy who had recently immigrated from China, told his mom cheerfully, “My classmates gave me a new English name – they call me ‘stupid..’” Xiaohua faced a completely unfamiliar environment, and did not know English. He had no friends. Eventually, he stopped speaking to anyone at all, and this shadowed his entire elementary and middle school experience.

Xiaohua’s experience is not uncommon among Chinese American immigrant students. Some education experts blame the “No Child Left Behind” policy. Under this initiative, schools tend to over-value test-taking and restrict creativity in the curriculum. This can inhibit students’ overall development. Chinese American children, who are usually high achieving students academically, often neglect communication and social skills. Many become too shy and are unable to participate in social activities.


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