Dingyao Learns English
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Dingyao Learns English

Dingyao presenting in class

Many young Singaporeans struggle with their mother tongue in school. But that’s not the case for four-year-old Lu Dingyao, a first-generation Singaporean who grew up speaking Mandarin.

Dingyao, whose parents are Shanghainese, is more comfortable in his mother tongue. Dingyao says, “When I don’t understand, I respond in Chinese. When I do, I respond in English.”

Dingyao’s parents hope to change that by speaking to him in English at home. They also try to set a good example by speaking English to each other.

Preschoolers in class

His mother, Ms Wang Yuan Yuan, says, “I did worry that Dingyao would struggle to make friends, or not be able to fully understand lessons.” His father, Mr Lu Yi Ping, adds that in Singapore, Dingyao needs to master a certain level of English to be able to interact easily with others.

Dingyao and his classmate

Their fears turned out to be unfounded. Dingyao’s classmates help him with writing and pronouncing his words. And when it comes to play time, his friends make sure he understands the game so that they can all have fun together.

Preschool teacher Ms Lynnette Fang says, “Half a year later, Dingyao is more expressive and a lot more confident in the classroom.

Watch video here.

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