I live in Beijing, the capital of China. I live with my Belgian husband and my son who is about 8 months old.
In recent years, English education for young children has attracted attention in China. There are still many developing regions in China, except for big cities such as Beijing and Shanghai. Under such circumstances, English education has attracted attention, and the number of people interested in English education has increased in the middle and upstream families since children were small.
Because Japanese and Chinese are the same Asian, when I take my son with me, I am often mistaken for Chinese. But that’s why when you go to a shopping mall with your son, you get a lot of flyers about early childhood English education. Here, I would like to introduce some of the early childhood English education in China.
Get exposed to English daily
Parents talk to kids in English
They listen to English songs a lot
In such circumstances, I sometimes see children listening to English music. Some children sing with beautiful pronunciation, such as ABC songs and twinkle stars. In the first place, it is impossible to see such a figure on the train itself in Japan, but rather than watching the video on the mobile phone and spending time rather than spending time.
Many facilities to enjoy English
You can often find a facility called GYMBOREE in the shopping mall. It is a company headquartered in San Francisco, California, USA, where children enjoy learning English and singing songs.
I have a Taiwanese friend with a girl born two months after my son, and she seemed interested in the facility. I went to this facility the other day when we went out together, she heard the explanation and translated it into me.
Families study English, too
While she was listening to the explanation, I was waiting at the entrance in my son’s stroller. Then a 1 year old boy became interested in my son and approached. Then the woman who looked like a grandmother was talking in English, “Cute baby.”
I felt it was amazing to be able to speak English not only to my parents, but also to grandfather and grandmother households. Certainly, there is a notion that “Such people are in a different world”, but maybe grandfathers and grandmother also studied English for grandchildren’s English education. They didn’t seem fluent at all, but it’s still amazing.
Be careful with advertisements!!
Maybe don’t receive handouts
However, while the momentum of such English education is strong, I feel that the solicitation is heating up. If you go to a shopping mall, you can see that there are soliciting English education here and there. They hand out flyers and advertise with the iPad in one hand.
The other day, when I went out with my son, I received a flyer as if I was presenting a flyer as if to block my path. Then the man opened the calendar on the iPad and asked, “When will you start?”
Of course I was annoyed so I said in Chinese “His dad is American.” (He was actually a Belgian, but some don’t know that country so I sometimes just say American), The man then picked up the flyer I received and returned to his original location. I felt that it was rude, but at the same time I learned that we should not accept flyers.
They are so insistent!!
There have been various other solicitations, but there is an image that all solicitations are persistent. The other day, a man approached me and started explaining alongside me. I got on an escalator while walking with me.
When I stood next to the escalator and explained various things, I was so annoyed that I said in English, “Hey, I don’t understand Chinese but could you explain it in English?” Then he seemed unable to explain in English. When I looked at my face and looked like “Ah …”, he greeted his son “Hello !!”
Solicitation is persistent anyway. If you showed interest, you might feel stupid later.
Be careful which class to choose
I don’t feel like having my son go to an English class here, but when I chose an English class, I felt that I had to be careful, whether in China or Japan. Anyway, because the business is heating up, every English classroom is desperately trying to gather “customers”.
I don’t think there will be any company in Japan that picks up the flyers that were handed out during the solicitation, but some manners are important. I felt that the atmosphere of the whole classroom and the manners of adults are important, not just a place where children can enjoy learning English.
It is also important to have an opportunity to speak English with your family without relying on the classroom. If parents cannot speak English, they may need to be prepared to study with their children.