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CIS’ Chinese-English bilingual programme

CIS’ Chinese-English bilingual programme was one of the first to be offered in Singapore by an international school. Our established track record makes us one of the most experienced and trusted international schools in the region to educate students in becoming fluent communicators in both languages.


In our bilingual programme, students attend classes (with the respective teacher) in English one day, and in Chinese the next, ensuring equal exposure to both languages. From August 2022, our bilingual programme will also be offered in an age appropriate way to children in nursery. You can learn more about nursery on our kindergarten page.

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Students’ Chinese literacy development is supported by our 36 level guided reading programme, and a well-established system to connect students learning to all other curriculum areas. Additionally, all students have Chinese language acquisition classes five times each week. These classes are taught by separate native speaking teachers, and students are grouped according to their proficiency levels for these classes. In Chinese language classes, teachers follow the highly respected Big Apple Programme, a collection of more than 130 levelled story books written by our Director of Chinese-English bilingual, Huali Xiong.

We currently have over 47 bilingual classes and a specific bilingual pathway has been designed for students to maintain their Chinese in Secondary School and the Middle Years Programme (MYP). From Senior Kindergarten onwards, students must meet the specific language requirements to enter the programme.

A key feature of our programme is learning about Chinese culture as research shows speaking a language without understanding its culture, has very little real-world value. We also support students in their learning with a wide range of resources including a collection of over 8,000 Chinese fiction books.

Over the years, CIS has received a range of accolades about the Chinese-English bilingual programme, from leading, global foreign language experts to the most recent 2022 Which School Advisor’s best bilingual programme award. Additionally, our Youth Chinese Test (YCT) results where for over five years, CIS students have outperformed all other students in Singapore in the Youth Chinese Test (YCT), demonstrate the overall high quality of our programme.

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