I’m just amazed every day how much Mandarin Samantha’s learning. She’s saying new words every day, she’s starting to read the characters, and her pronunciation sounds really good to me.
But, I’m begging to see how difficult it’s going to be for me to help her with her homework. They are having an assessment beginning next week. The district requires these assessments. They have already started doing them in the English class. Each child sits with the teacher and be assessed on both knowing the vocabulary as well as being able to read.
I wasn’t worried until I found out about the reading part. Sam knows some of the characters, but certainly not the list it was recommended we help them study. We have flash cards we can print out, and I have to admit, I haven’t finished printing them out and cutting them and organizing them all yet. But I do have quite a few.
Just making the flash cards has been eye opening. The idea is to not have any English on the cards. So I have the character on one side and I write the word in Chinese off my cheat sheet, then Samantha is supposed to draw something that represents the word under my Chinese word. Without the drawing, I have no idea what it is. I have no idea if she’s pronouncing things correctly. And I have no idea how one goes about learning the characters. I can’t help her sound them out like I do with English words.
I’ve just been spending 10 or so minutes a day going over them and she seems to be learning some, but I feel very useless. I’m just the paper turner (and the one who makes sure she can’t see the drawing through the paper, the little cheater).
Basically, I’m freaking out a little. Anyone have any suggestions? I do know a few people who speak, but it’s not super convenient for them to help her regularly.