The International School of Phnom Penh believes that it is vital that all students have the opportunity to maintain and develop their mother tongue (the main language that the student uses at home), where feasible.
The research relating to mother-tongue maintenance and development (Cummins and Danesi, in Baker and Prys Jones, 1988) is particularly significant. This research indicates that students following a mother-tongue maintenance and development programme receive the following benefits:
The purpose of the programme is to provide the opportunity for all students to develop appropriate skills in their mother tongue according to their age level. The Mother Tongue Programme is not a foreign language course. Therefore children should be fluent speakers of a language that is spoken at home by at least one parent. The school may determine if a particular student meets the requirements to join a Mother Tongue class.
Mother Tongue classes begin in Grade 2. Mother tongue Khmer and Mandarin are school supported for all Khmer and Mandarin speaking students. The school will endeavour to engage teachers for all other mother tongue languages requested, if available.
For further information about the Mother Tongue Programme for PYP students, please contact Ms Elizabeth Ramey, our Mother Tongue Coordinator, at [email protected] or Ms Liz Ford, Elementary Principal, at [email protected].