Chinese Academy - Tai Chi

Chinese Language Academy

Learn Chinese at our summer language immersion program for teens.

Whether you're an absolute beginner who has never spoken a word of Mandarin or an advanced speaker who is hoping to practice Mandarin in a real-world setting, you will dramatically improve your Chinese language skills at the Academy.

For summer 2017, join us at Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vermont, for a U.S.-based immersion program that accepts rising 8th-12th students from beginners to advanced Mandarin speakers. Or choose to study abroad in Beijing, China, an international program for rising 9th-12th grade students with at least one year of Mandarin experience (rising 9th graders must have a minimum of two years middle school Chinese language study).

For four weeks, all programming, events, activities, field trips, meetings and meals will be in Chinese. From morning assembly until lights out, you’ll be immersed in the Chinese language with a group of peers at the same competency level as you. The curriculum is organized by themes that help you navigate life in this new environment and is based on the longstanding tradition of immersion education at Middlebury College's Language Schools.

Why Learn Mandarin Chinese?

More than 848 million people in the world—that’s close to one fifth of the world’s entire population—speak Mandarin (a part of the Chinese language family), making it the language with the largest number of native speakers. Meanwhile, China is rising quickly as a leading nation in the global marketplace. Many U.S. companies have large operations in China and also have business relationships with Chinese corporations. Students who master Mandarin are sure to become valuable candidates for employment in many industries and companies in the U.S., China and all over the world.

Our curriculum uses Chinese pinyin characters to teach Standard Chinese. Most of our teachers teach simplified and traditional characters and will introduce both forms of written text to students during the course of the Academy.

“I’m really passionate about Chinese. I wanted to push my language skills to the limit and this language program has the best name out there.”

Doug, Chinese Academy Student

Experience Chinese Culture

You'll spend the summer with other students, gaining an appreciation for Chinese language and culture through cuisine, art, history, dress, dance and politics. For Chinese language students, cultural exploration may include:

  • Learning tai chi, Chinese brush painting, knotting and origami.
  • Taking Chinese dumpling cooking classes and hosting Chinese tea ceremonies.
  • Studying Chinese music, religion, folk dance and Chinese festival celebrations.
  • Visiting Middlebury College's Chinese Language School where you will take a tour of campus (in Mandarin!), attend a dance or music performance and enjoy dinner alongside Chinese Language School students.

When cultural opportunities are available nearby, we find a way to engage with the local community, as well as bring that community to you.