Ethnic minority students have diverse learning needs and adjustment issues that constantly need to be addressed in order to enhance their integration into the educational system and indeed, society at large. Given that our existing BEd curriculum does not have extensive coverage on working with non-Chinese speaking (NCS) children, this project can help to widen our students’ teaching experience and allow students to gain a deeper understanding to help plan and organize special events for NCS school children in the local community.
Following the adoption of two new university-wide themes, this project aims to provide our student teachers with experiential learning by:
- facilitating their professional development through the teaching of NCS school children (e.g., learning Chinese language, understanding Chinese culture);
- fostering their understanding of diverse needs and problems encountered by ethnic minority students, and;
- strengthening their communication skills developing relationships with ethnic minority groups in the community.
Key contents include: developing an e-learning module, providing direct service to the target groups and organizing a large-scale cultural exchange event. Students will be divided into groups of 4 (from any two majors, from any year – Chinese, English, Mathematics, Liberal Studies, Physical Education, and Early Childhood). This project will significantly enhance the personal and professional development of CUHK students. The project outcomes can then be replicated as an elective course in the future cohorts of the BEd programmes or included as part of the requirements for graduation.
To provide our BEd students with experiential learning to foster their understanding of diverse needs among non-Chinese speaking (NCS) students.
Activities, process and outcomes
Preparation: (March – December 2018)
- eLearning materials were developed. Sharing seminars and a site visit were organized. All were done to arouse students’ interests in this topics
- A new 3-credit course on experiential learning (EDUC3200) was developed to link up with this project.
Implementation (Jan – April 2019)
- Students worked in groups of 4-5 to implement their 25-hour programme to their target groups of children (and their parents).
- Presentation and reflection exercises followed.
Post-programme activities (May – June 2019)
- A closing ceremony-cum cultural event, together with the collaborators, will be held in CUHK on May 18, 2019.
Deliverables and evaluation
- Video clips were produced to summarize the learning experience.
- Evaluation of this programme (from collaborators, service recipients, as well as CUHK students) will be conducted in May/June 2019.
Dissemination, diffusion, impact and sharing of good practices
- Demonstrated an innovative approach to teacher development and enhance the quality of the learning for students.
- Propose to include this kind of “experiential/service learning” as a component (an elective course) in the curriculum for teacher-training.