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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 4:52 pm 
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Location: East Lancashire
Hi everyone :D I would be grateful for any advice, however I am not sure if this is the right section to ask for help :?

Here is our dilemma!
DD is at an indie in Year 8 and has been studying three languages so far, French (her choice, could have done Spanish) and Mandarin from Year 7 and Latin from Year 8.

The Year group have been asked to choose one language to take from year 9 (possibly through to GCSE if they wish) from Mandarin or Latin (both of which she loves) or Spanish or German (can take up from scratch in year 9).
She has to take French through to GCSE possibly along with one of the others :?

DD has already decided after having taster lessons that she does not want to take up another new language such as Spanish or German but is really confused to which out of Latin or Mandarin she should continue with :? DD finds both languages interesting, she really enjoys them and manages to do equally well in both in her exams :?

DH and myself have no experience of either of these languages (both went to sink secondary schools where you were lucky to occasionally do a bit of Italian :shock: :oops: :lol: ) and feel we cannot advise her :(

Does anyone have any views on either :?:

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 4:59 pm 
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Mmmm forgot to add that she has to decide by Friday :shock: :oops: :shock:

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 5:13 pm 
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My daughter has opted for Latin at a GS which also teaches Mandarin to GCSE.
Aside from the fact she loved it, the teacher prepared a very persuasive sheet using quotes from university admissions officers from the best Unis, all praising Latin as a subject held in high academic regard.
There have been a few threads on Mandarin in schools and I think the jury is still a little more "out" on the prestige/ academic rigour of the subject. If she is absolutely, equally loving both, then Latin possibly is a safer bet in the regard with which it is held. Just my opinion FWIW :D


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 5:50 pm 
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Hi Chelmsford mum :) Thank you for your opinion I really am grateful :D

We are so confused :? Some friends of ours (with DC at a Grammar) have said that Latin is a dead language and that Mandarin is the language of the future but I have very similar thoughts to your own and feel it may well count for more when thinking of uni :? I thought I had read somewhere that Latin was held in high regard :oops: :D

DD loves english and really likes to know the origin of words so Latin may be more useful too :D

Just to confuse matters more DD has well meaning grandparents who think she should take up Spanish instead :shock: :?

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:08 pm 
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I had a bit of a battle with OH over Latin along the same lines as it being "dead".If it turns out that your DD is a budding linguist mandarin is going to be increasingly taught and could be picked up elsewhere/later.
Latin seems to be (sadly) the preserve of GS and indep schools and not so easily found elsewhere.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:33 pm 
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Latin, it will help with all sorts of subjects, languages, history, English and if all else fails sh'ell be able to read instructions on gravestones and monuments,

personally I think that mandarin is all bit of a hype.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:36 pm 
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From what I have heard Latin is still regarded as a rigourous GCSE. Mandarin seems to have the reputation of being too easy for native speakers and too hard for non-native speakers, a C is not an uncommon grade. What do the school say? Can they give you the range of grades from previous students so that you can make a more informed decision.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:52 pm 
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Go to this thread -' Choosing languages (already!) for Year 7'. There is lots of really interesting discussion about all sorts of languages!


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 8:07 pm 
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Location: East Lancs
I wouldn't start a new language, while it is possible to learn a language in 3 years, surely it would be easier to carry on with one of the languages she already has a knowledge of, and therefore get a better grade :?

I am a little confused though, the school's website says
Quote:
Mandarin was introduced into the curriculum in the academic year of 2006/07 across all Years 7, 8 and 9.
Does she have to drop Mandarin at the end of year 8 if she decides to take Latin?

Does your DD have an interest in the classics, for the Latin course the website says;

Quote:
Upon completing this course pupils then move to focus on passages of verse and prose by such ancient authors as Vergil and Pliny, on which they are examined in their final examinations.


Is there a favourite teacher? That could swing your DD's decision, but I think unless your DD has an interest in being involved in the kind of business that has links in China; Technology, Finance etc. I would probably edge towards Latin.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 8:21 pm 
I would suggest Latin because it opens up the option of her studying Classics later on whereas it is near impossible to do without it. In saying that I believe that learning Latin at home would be easier to do than Mandarin. Correct me if I'm wrong but I thought I read recently that the only pupils gaining good grades in GCSE Mandarin were Chinese pupils and Britih pupils were not getting good grades. May be worth taking into consideration as a lower GCSE result could look bad on uni admissions.


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