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Provo City School District

Wasatch Elementary School

Last modified: November 11, 2022

Chinese Immersion

Please be aware that the enrollment process for dual language immersion has changed.

Parents who wish to enroll their child in the program must apply online at between December 1st and February 16th. This application must be submitted online even if the student has siblings already in the program. Students who live outside of the boundary of their desired school should also complete an Open Enrollment Application.

Please see the Provo School District Web Site for Registration.

Chinese Newspaper

Why Immersion?

More than forty years of research consistently documents the power of immersion programs to help students attain high levels of second language proficiency. No other type of instruction, short of living in a second-language environment, is as successful.

Young children especially thrive in this type of instructional environment. Happily, language immersion is also the least expensive way to deliver second language instruction.

Proven Benefits

  • Second Language Skills Students achieve high proficiency in immersion language
  • Improved Performance on Standardized Tests Immersion students perform as well as or better than non-immersion students on standardized tests of English and math administered in English.
  • Enhanced Cognitive Skills Immersion students typically develop greater cognitive flexibility, demonstrating increased attention control, better memory, and superior problem solving skills as well as an enhanced understanding of their primary language.
  • Increased Cultural Sensitivity Immersion students are more aware of and show more positive  attitudes towards other cultures and an appreciation of other people.
  • Long Term Benefits Immersion students are better prepared for the global community and job markets where a second language is an asset.

Program Objectives

  • Maximize students’ second language proficiency
  • Provide a rich academic environment in both first and second language
  • Develop students’ ability to work successfully in multiple cultural settings
  • Offer  a rich, culturally diverse  experience for the entire school community

What to Expect in a Dual Language Immersion Program

Dual language immersion offers a rich bilingual experience for young learners when their minds are developmentally best able to acquire a second language.

Instruction is divided between two high quality, creative classrooms: one English and one Chinese. Students enjoy the advantage of two caring, qualified teachers. The English speaking teacher uses half of the instruction time to teach science and English language arts (reading, writing, and spelling).

The Chinese speaking teacher uses the other half of the day to teach math,social studies, and health topics from the grade–appropriate level of the USOE core curriculum.

The Chinese teacher speaks only in Mandarin and communicates using a range of engaging strategies including pictures, songs, games, body language, expressions, pantomime, drama, etc.  Children at this age are adept at picking up language in meaningful contexts. After a  brief period at the beginning of the year, students too will speak only Mandarin during Chinese class.

You’ll be delighted how quickly your child becomes a comfortable  and competent Chinese speaker

Why Chinese?

Chinese is the most widely spoken first language in the world. The Mandarin dialect is the official language of the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan and is widely understood in Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines and Mongolia. Also, according to the U.S. 2000 census, Chinese is now the third most commonly spoken language in the U.S.

China is heir to the traditions of one of the world’s richest and most ancient cultures and home  today to the world’s second largest economy. Its political, economic, and cultural impact in generations to come will be significant.  As business and political relationships between the U.S. and China deepen and become more complex, having the skills to communicate with people in this increasingly significant part of the world will be a valuable asset at home and abroad.

Who Can Participate?

The immersion program  seeks to enroll students of varying  backgrounds and all abilities. Applications are open to all students entering kindergarten. However, it may not be a wise choice for children experiencing communication delays in their primary language

Parent Responsibilities

  • commit to long–term participation in immersion program
  • develop understanding of immersion education
  • read with your child (in English) 20-30 min. daily
  • Complete Chinese homework – reading, writing and math (20-30 minutes daily)
  • encourage the use of Chinese outside of school
  • provide community support and, when possible, volunteer
  • enjoy the challenges; celebrate the results

How to Enroll my Child

  1. Attend the Chinese Immersion Orientation meeting (usually in February)
  2. Fill out and submit application (applications are available at the meeting or in to office after that date)
  3. Notification of admission will be made
  4. Sign the Parent Commitment Form to confirm acceptance and complete registration