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Primary Mother Tongue Languages Curriculum to Nurture 21st Century Competencies in Students

Published Date: 26 August 2023 12:00 PM

News Press Releases

Minister for Education, Mr Chan Chun Sing, launched the 2024 Primary Mother Tongue Languages (MTL) curriculum at the 12th Mother Tongue Languages Symposium (MTLS) today. The curriculum will be rolled out progressively, starting from the Primary 1 cohort next year.

2. The Primary MTL curriculum aims to cultivate students' appreciation of their MTL and to build in them the confidence to learn and use their MTL for life. Building on the 2015 curriculum, the refreshed 2024 Primary MTL curriculum will place greater emphasis on developing students' 21st Century Competencies such as intra- and cross-cultural skills, communication skills, as well as critical and inventive thinking. It will also broaden the use of authentic contexts and materials that relate to students' interests and daily lives.

3. Teachers will continue to employ multi-modal approaches, including meaningful use of technology, to engage and support students in learning MTL. Students can look forward to more extensive use of gamification and differentiated resources, to sharpen their language skills at their own time and pace beyond the classroom. Parents are encouraged to tap on these resources to support their child's learning of MTL at home.

4. MOE considered feedback from over 11,000 students, 1,000 teachers, and 4,000 parents on the previous curriculum in the development of the refreshed 2024 Primary MTL curriculum.

Outstanding Preschool Mother Tongue Language Teacher Award

5. At the symposium, 15 dedicated preschool teachers were recognised as recipients of the annual Outstanding Preschool Mother Tongue Language (OPMTL) Teacher Award – six received the Outstanding Award and nine received the Merit Award. The award recipients were selected from a total of 163 nominations. (Please see Annex A for the list of award recipients).

6. The OPMTL Teacher Award – jointly presented by the Committee to Promote Chinese Language Learning (CPCLL), the Malay Language Learning and Promotion Committee (MLLPC), and the Tamil Language Learning and Promotion Committee (TLLPC) – recognises the contributions of our preschool teachers in making the learning of MTLs engaging, and in nurturing a love of MTLs among preschool children. The selection panel for the award recipients comprised nine experienced educators and academics, who conducted lesson observations and interviews with the teachers as part of the selection process.

Highlights of MTLS 2023

7. This year's symposium featured a line-up of educators, curriculum specialists, and media personalities who shared tips and insights on literacy and cultivating an appreciation of the MTLs. There was a total of 19 sharing sessions targeted at parents and educators, as well as 26 interactive workshops for parents to engage their child in MTL learning. Speakers included:

  • Mr Josef Lee, a local picture-book author and artist who shares stories through pictures. Mr Lee focuses on using simple characters and words, alongside a whimsical illustration style, to create heartwarming stories to touch the hearts of readers.
  • Ms Nur-El-Hudaa Jaffar is an editor, translator, and writer of children's books. During her workshop, participants were invited to put on their imaginary hat and create their own stories after learning about character, plot, and emotion development.
  • Mdm Kalpana, a producer, director, and script writer for numerous local Tamil Emmy Award (Pradhana Vizha) winning programmes, believes firmly in the importance of clear pronunciation and effective intonation when using the Tamil language. She shared useful tips to help children express themselves clearly and confidently in Tamil in front of the camera.

8. A highlight of the symposium was the Centrepiece, an activity area where children embarked on an immersive adventure filled with varied sounds, words, and hands-on activities at the various MTL learning stations, namely Xiao Tao's Farm, Sani's Castle, Kavin's Forest, and Peppy' Confectionery. Visitors could also explore various MTL activities at the exhibition booths. (Please see Annex B for the list of exhibition booths at the symposium).

9. The MTLS website, which will be available till June 2024, will feature slides from the sharing sessions and interactive workshops, as well as exhibition boards from the various booths, after the symposium. Parents can also visit the Lee Kuan Yew Fund for Bilingualism website for recommendations on MTL books and resources suitable for young children.