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The Griffin

Our mission: to enlighten and to entertain

The Griffin

Our mission: to enlighten and to entertain

The Griffin

Students benefit from learning Chinese as a world language

Students+benefit+from+learning+Chinese+as+a+world+language
Ashlyn Hoffmann

The only non-Romance language offered at Dulaney High School (DHS) is Chinese. Teacher Matthew Lovett and current student Emerald Xu discuss the benefits of learning this unique language in high school.

Lovett is currently the only Chinese teacher at DHS, teaching all levels from Chinese 1 to Advanced Placement (AP) Chinese 7. Before teaching Chinese to English speakers, he taught English to Chinese speakers.

“I went to China and lived there for three and a half years and while I was there, I taught English. I enjoyed it so when I came back to the [United States] I decided to teach Chinese,” said Lovett.

Learning Chinese is a very different experience than learning English, Spanish, French or Latin and is a great opportunity for students to experience an entirely different part of the world.

“It’s very different than all the romance languages so it opens up a world to a different place of thinking,” said Lovett.

Although the grammar is similar to English, the writing style is very different, making it challenging for many students. Xu, a third-year Chinese student enrolled in AP Chinese 7, thinks this change is the hardest aspect of the language.

“It’s a completely different system. A lot of languages that are relevant in this area use letters but Chinese is all symbols. It’s very memory-based,” said Xu.

Something Xu likes about learning Chinese is the historical patterns she can recognize in the writing style.

“Chinese is artistic so the symbols sometimes look like what the word means. For example, the symbol for ‘mountain’ looks like three hills. Art is implemented into Chinese symbols which I find really unique,” said Xu.

“It’s unique to Asia so you get a new perspective on other parts of the world,” said Lovett.

Although challenging, Chinese can be eye-opening and fun. Both Xu and Lovett appreciate the cultural significance of the language and their ability to learn not just the language, but about it more in-depth.

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About the Contributor
Ashlyn Hoffmann, Opinion Editor
Senior Ashlyn Hoffmann is a third-year staff writer, opinion editor and member of Dulaney’s color guard. She’s a firm believer that Math is red and English is blue. She won't tolerate any other opinion on that matter.
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