“Wo Hui” (我会) means “I can!”

“To learn a language, especially a ‘distant language,’ is not just to acquire a tool but to learn about ‘the other’ … Little by little, learners’ identities are changed and enriched.”

— Joel Marc Bellassen (白乐桑)


Building Bridges To The World

Our community began in a group of English-medium schools in Asia with 10000 students learning Chinese and arguably the largest faculty of teachers of Mandarin as Foreign Language of any single organisation in the world. Working together as a family of schools putting students first, the community set out with a pioneering spirit to ensure that the experience of learning Mandarin Chinese would be consistently outstanding.

Wo Hui Mandarin

… began with Tim F Nash (师中平) and 杜宏霞 (Annabel Parker), who called on the expertise of Professor Joel Marc Bellassen (白乐桑), Professor 张新生 (George Zhang) and Professor Katherine Carruthers OBE (杜可歆) to help them to:

One

Articulate a pedagogy specifically for Mandarin as a foreign language

Two

Map out a comprehensive curriculum for navigating the “real” world in Chinese

Three

Create the resources needed to deliver it

As the community addressed various conceptual, technological and logistical challenges, “我会” (Wo Hui = I can!) became the mantra that kept them going. It also summed up their vision for learners and teachers of Mandarin Chinese around the world. The name “Wo Hui Mandarin” was born.

After four years, Professor Hu Wenhua from Fudan University in Shanghai reviewed what they had produced and told a conference of teachers of Chinese in international schools:

“Encourages students to become strong independent learners. Teachers can work more effectively in the classroom, giving them a sense of achievement from fruitful teaching.”

— Professor Hu Wenhua of Fudan University

The group then set Wo Hui Mandarin up as an independent company registered in Singapore so that it could grow the community beyond its own schools and continue to innovate to meet the needs of learners and teachers of Mandarin Chinese in other contexts around the world.