WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. — A peak inside Zhangxun Huang's classroom at East Point Academy in West Columbia, South Carolina might feel like a trip to the other side of the world for some.
The students who attend this tuition free, public charter school spend most of their school day speaking only Mandarin Chinese. The immersion school educates children starting at 4 years old through middle school.
In Mr. Huang's math class of 5th graders, he sets the expectations high for his students. Parents say they appreciate his dedication to individualized instruction and focus on incorporating the immersion experience in teaching math.
Mr. Huang says in "the normal classroom setting, I expect them to speak Mandarin to me all of the time." However, depending on the student's level of language fluency there are strategies, clues and tips that can be used to help them communicate.
"They've got to really try hard to get a high grade from me. But I believe that will be beneficial for their learning in the future. The more I prepare them for middle school, the easier next year will be," Huang says.
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