When I traveled to Singapore the other month and I had the chance to visit Nan Chiau Primary School and join the school’s celebration for the launch of My Cloud. My Cloud is a project in partnership with Microsoft Research in Beijing where Nan Chiau is providing access to Chinese-based learning environments for Chinese character, as well as Chinese reading for students on the Web.
Using Microsoft Silverlight and technology from Microsoft Research in Beijing, Nan Chiau is rolling out a tool to help parents and help students learn the Chinese language and its context in greater depth. In many ways, Chinese is a dying language in Singapore. While Malay is the national language, and many people speak Mandarin Chinese and Tamil…the majority speak English, and in society all the signs are written in English. It’s interesting to hear everyone in Singapore speak perfectly fluent English with no accent…and now Chinese is the hard language to learn.
Nan Chiau is a school with tremendous leadership and vision for both ICT’s technology and the potential. The school has enthusiastic and committed teachers. The school recently received recognition as a Microsoft Innovative Mentor School. Nan Chiau Primary School’s vision is for every student to be a responsible and useful citizen.
Established in March 1947, the school strives to progress with the times, continuously undergoing self-renewal in line with the needs of the nation and making positive contributions to the educational development of Singapore. The staff has received several awards in education since 2008 as they strive to help provide an environment that is conducive to helping each student reach his or her full potential. Nan Chiau Primary School offers many special programmes which focus on not only the social and cultural development of the students, but on strengthening their academic capabilities as well.