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Kindergarden + School German speaking only?

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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    17

    Kindergarden + School German speaking only?

    Hi there,
    We are planning to move to HK next spring/summer, but we are thinking what to do with our kid.
    She talks German as first language, and starts with English plus Mandarin (but nearly zero atm).
    Next year August is her 6th birthday, so she shall go to school (by age), but we think that she could also do another year in Kindergarden, if needed.

    But, what to do in HK?

    • Are there German speaking Kindergardens or Schools available? I only know the German-Swiss intl school so far, which is not on the low price side..
    • Or would it be possible to go to a local Kindergarden for another year, as kids learn languages easier? Then later go to local schools?


    *This would be ok for us too, as she shall learn Mandarin and/or Canto, anyhow. But we are not sure if she could handle that as a non-native speaker?

    Another way could be to teach and improve English, so she could join English speaking schools next autumn, or a year later?

    So, what do you think? Any ideas?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    859
    Quote Originally Posted by Brazzo:
    Hi there,
    We are planning to move to HK next spring/summer, but we are thinking what to do with our kid.
    She talks German as first language, and starts with English plus Mandarin (but nearly zero atm).
    Next year August is her 6th birthday, so she shall go to school (by age), but we think that she could also do another year in Kindergarden, if needed.

    But, what to do in HK?

    • Are there German speaking Kindergardens or Schools available? I only know the German-Swiss intl school so far, which is not on the low price side..
    • Or would it be possible to go to a local Kindergarden for another year, as kids learn languages easier? Then later go to local schools?


    *This would be ok for us too, as she shall learn Mandarin and/or Canto, anyhow. But we are not sure if she could handle that as a non-native speaker?

    Another way could be to teach and improve English, so she could join English speaking schools next autumn, or a year later?

    So, what do you think? Any ideas?


    GSIS. maybe?

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    TKO
    Posts
    165

    I will PM you


  4. #4

    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    859

    Ask the Geothe Institute.


  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jan 2018
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    2,789

    My sister adopted 3 girls, ages 6, 5, and 3, from Russia, back in the late 90's. They knew no English and started in all-English-speaking schools in the US and caught on very quickly (and at least one of them has learning disabilities). My sister helped them out quite a bit, of course. So pretty sure your daughter can easily pick up English at any English medium of instruction school and would soon be chatting away with new friends
    For Chinese schools, the kindergarten years focus quite a bit on basic Chinese character reading and writing so by age 6 would take some private tutoring to catch up.

    Brazzo likes this.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Tuen Mun
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    1,913

    As far as I know, GSIS is the only German medium of instruction school here, and yes, it costs $$$$$$$.
    I don't know the situation now, but years back when I had close connections with the school it was functioning as a "state school abroad" for German and Swiss nationals (with the Austrians also trying to get aboard). This meant that fees for eligible nationalities were way lower than for students in the international section. There will certainly be someone around who can give you more up-to-date information.
    As well as GSIS and the GI, there are a number of other German-speaking groups in Hong Kong where you could meet up with other families where you could arrange play dates and other ways to keep at least the spoken language alive for your daughter.

    As for local schools, I would first be looking at English-medium schools, whether government funded or the less pricey international ones. I have seen it work for children in foreign families to fit into the very local Chinese-medium schools, but only 2 or 3 times in more than 30 years. Not only do the children need extensive, ongoing language support outside of school hours, but the entire culture of learning here is so utterly different from that in western Europe.

    shri and Brazzo like this.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    17

    Update: I´ve contacted the GSIS, and they are really very friendly and helpful!
    There is enough place available for German speaking kids, so this is our plan A.
    But we would like to have a plan B with English spoken kids, and probably a less pricy one

    Quote Originally Posted by chingleutsch:
    ...As for local schools, I would first be looking at English-medium schools, whether government funded or the less pricey international ones...
    -> Does someone have a link or an overview of government funded English-medium schools, or not overrun intl schools?

  8. #8

    Join Date
    May 2020
    Posts
    29
    For Chinese schools, the kindergarten years focus quite a bit on basic Chinese character reading and writing so by age 6 would take some private tutoring to catch up.

    By age 6 they are very advanced and can read and write many characters. it will be extremely hard to catch up, will need massive tutoring, not like 1 or 2 hours a week, more like everyday in an intensive way. even harder if no one is chinese at home, will need even more support. very difficult, but still possible. if you want them to learn chinese in a cute but non-functional way, like saying a few sentences and writing some words, then most international schools can do that and no need for extra help

  9. #9

    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Sai Kung
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    659

    Also, be prepared to have your kids in school, then tutorial centers and after-school-activities all day (including weekends) if you go local. Only international schools are more relaxed (but even here you find kids that are going to lots and lots of extra classes).
    If you sum up all these extra activities, it is probably enough to pay for GSIS.