Mandarin Expansion Programme

Programme support

In the light of the Department for Education's Mandarin Expansion Programme (MEP) and given the understandable delay in the publication of the tender document we feel it is important to let you know who we are, what we do and have done, and what we propose to do.

CLP is a leading-edge creator of language learning resources with a specific focus on Mandarin. In co-operation with Learn About China Ltd we created the ULearnChinese series which has the endorsement of Hanban. Levels 1 and 2 (of 6) have been published and consist of a student book, workbook and teacher's guide together with a CD containing PDFs of the student books for local printing, drawing sheets for all the characters, animated GIFs of the characters, PowerPoint presentations of the individual units and the accompanying audio files.

A second CD provides a language lab containing material taken from the books and a tone training tool to aid pronunciation. In addition we include a virtual pinyin keyboard to enable the input of pinyin that retains the pinyin rather than converting to characters. The virtual keyboard is available as a stand-alone item.

We are working with a partner to enable us to deliver these materials virtually, thereby reducing costs for schools, easing the burden for IT staff and cutting the environmental impact of publishing.

We have the capability to curate a virtual bank of images, videos and podcasts that enhance and enrich the students' learning experience of Mandarin. Submissions would have to be of suitable quality but would provide access to the wealth of materials available. Similarly, we are in a position to compile and curate a dictionary of character drawing sheets and animated GIFs that can accommodate specific teacher requirements.

On a practical classroom level we can produce flashcards, word games, bingo cards, word dominos, pelmanism sets (for pairs and triplets) and other support materials tailored to a specific topic and incorporating graphics with which students are already familiar. We are also able to supply Chinese number dice, both 6-sided and 10-sided, for use in classroom games.

In addition, we can supply an MEP language lab with training for the creation of content. The content could be made available to all schools in virtual format. The language lab would be accompanied by the virtual pinyin keyboard.

With regard to assessment throughout the programme, we are talking to an awarding body in order to develop a rigorous yet motivational system of assessment that will map students' progress at every stage of the MEP. This will, of course, include a vocabulary list that is appropriate to learners' needs for communicative purposes.

We would like to emphasise that, as an independent publisher, we can take any vocabulary lists and graphics, subject to quality, to create support materials for use in the classroom and can reformat the teaching and CPD resources created by others for electronic/virtual delivery.

We are working with a number of experienced organisations and individuals in the UK, Europe, China and the Far East who each contribute from their own area of expertise to make Mandarin more accessible to learners.

We are interested to hear from you and learn about what you could bring to the programme. We are also interested in any cross-curricular ideas that you may have that would enhance the learning experience of students and facilitate the delivery of 8 hours study time of Mandarin in an already packed timetable.

If you would like to talk to us please ring Kate Hammond on 01278 741087 or email