About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 261-268
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2011
Location: Valencia, Spain

CHINESE LANGUAGE CURRICULUM REFORM IN SINGAPORE PRIMARY SCHOOLS: A SOCIOLOGICAL ANALYSIS ON MODULAR CURRICULUM

L. Li

Nanyang Technological University, National Institute of Education (SINGAPORE)
The study is focused on the analysis of Chinese Language teaching guide and is part of a broader research on evaluating the present Chinese Language Curriculum reform in Singapore. It is intended to explore the changes and effectiveness entailed in the reform from the perspective of the sociological meaning. This study, which is within a sociological paradigm, is mainly focused on a particular school discipline in Singapore—Chinese Language—and it is interested in analyzing control relations between teacher and students. The analysis is theoretically based on Bernstein’s theory of pedagogic discourse (Bernstein, 1990, 1996). According to Bernstein, the school context analysis can be seen in terms of the relations between agencies, discourses and subjects legitimized by the official pedagogic discourse. The teaching guides can also be analyzed in this way. What and how the ideology and intention of Ministry of Education (MOE) in Singapore to reform the primary Chinese language education is expressed in the teaching guides.
The message expressed in the content which related to the transmission–acquisition context were interpreted with each sentence of the teaching guides from grade 1 to grade 4 of Singapore CL modular curriculum for primary schools as the basic unit of the analysis. We made the interpretation of the message expressed in the content of the teaching guide related to the transmission–acquisition context. Therefore, we made a content analysis of the teaching guide from Grade 1 to Grade 4 of Singapore Chinese Language modular curriculum for primary schools. The content of the teaching guide was taken in a global sense, including the sentences contained in two major topics (Guidelines and Objectives & Pedagogic Designs).
By analyzing the categorized contents as Official Pedagogic Discourse text, we get some characters of the theory of instruction recommended in the current reform on Chinese language modular curriculum in Singapore. Content analysis in this study suggests a mixed theory of instruction in the present CL reform. The emphasis of the theory of instruction is gradually shifted from the transmitter to the acquirer within the three modules designed within the CL curriculum and the two stages of schooling, namely Grade 1 and Grade 2 as the first stage, Grade 3 and Grade 4 as the second stage. These findings are in accordance with the current state of CL education in Singapore that with familiar language shift bringing schooling children attending CL classes with diverse levels of CL proficiency, CL education is consequently recommended to be changed from more emphasis on the transmitting of linguistic skills and Chinese culture to more focus on communication skills in CL and interest in learning CL as, though mother tongue but, a second language.
In addition to providing the sociological meaning of the message contained in the theory of instruction, the findings obtained from this study may serve as a vital reference for the preparation of the prospective curriculum innovation following the current curriculum. Besides, this study shows empirical evidence for educators’ initial understanding of the theory of instruction for the ongoing CL reform, which is also valuable to teacher’s professional development during the implementation of a curriculum.
@InProceedings{LI2011CHI,
author = {Li, L.},
title = {CHINESE LANGUAGE CURRICULUM REFORM IN SINGAPORE PRIMARY SCHOOLS: A SOCIOLOGICAL ANALYSIS ON MODULAR CURRICULUM},
series = {5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-614-7423-3},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {7-9 March, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {261-268}}
TY - CONF
AU - L. Li
TI - CHINESE LANGUAGE CURRICULUM REFORM IN SINGAPORE PRIMARY SCHOOLS: A SOCIOLOGICAL ANALYSIS ON MODULAR CURRICULUM
SN - 978-84-614-7423-3/2340-1079
PY - 2011
Y1 - 7-9 March, 2011
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2011 Proceedings
SP - 261
EP - 268
ER -
L. Li (2011) CHINESE LANGUAGE CURRICULUM REFORM IN SINGAPORE PRIMARY SCHOOLS: A SOCIOLOGICAL ANALYSIS ON MODULAR CURRICULUM, INTED2011 Proceedings, pp. 261-268.
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