All about Language in the PYP


Supporting Languages at KIS

As mentioned in my previous letter we, unfortunately, cannot offer the Additional Language Programme through the School anymore. I would like to offer support and assistance to those parents who would like to continue with this as a parent-initiated and funded programme.

From the KIS Language Policy

“KIS International School believes that language is integral in the development of personal identity and in the development of cultural understanding. It underpins the foundation of thinking and the development of rich clear self-expression enabling people to examine their own and others experiences, feelings and ideas, giving them order and meaning; it is the process by which meaning and knowledge are negotiated and constructed.”

Some of the Key Language terms used at KIS are:

The Language of Instruction – As an English Medium School, English is the language of instruction, all classes and curriculum areas are taught, assessed and discussed in English. English is, therefore, the language through which all students access the curriculum. All areas of learning require students to read, think and respond either orally or in writing in English.

The Language of Inclusion – English is also seen as the language of inclusion, as much as possible we encourage students, teachers and parents to communicate in English, this is the common language across the school and ensures everyone can join in the conversations and play. If we do use our mother tongue we are expected to change to English if others want to join.

English as an Additional Language – Students who are not proficient in English, they may speak or understand a little, or may come to KIS with no English language skills at all are offered English as Additional Language (EAL) classes.  Classes are offered until students are confident with the language and can access the curriculum, different levels of EAL are offered depending on the need of the student.

Host Country Language – As an International School in Thailand all students are required to study the Thai language and Thai culture. At KIS we have a Thai programme of inquiry that allows all students to access the PYP curriculum whilst wither maintaining and developing their mother tongue or learning about our host country through Thai language and culture (TAL).

Mother Tongue Language – As an International School the language of students is as diverse as the student body itself. We believe language is vital to learning and a sound foundation in Mother Tongue is essential for learning any other language. Mother tongue is the language spoken at home or by one or both parents. Therefore, for our non-Thai students, we offer the option of learning their Mother Tongue instead of one or two TAL classes per week, or as before or after school tutorials.   For these programmes, we can offer classroom space, some resources and support in finding a tutor, our language coordinator Ms Oui supervisors the programme and can assist you in organizing classes for your child. Currently, we have programmes running in Mandarin and Japanese. For more information click here

Additional Languages – This programme offers an introduction too additional languages, Languages other than English, Thai or Mother Tongue. In the past, we have offered Spanish and Mandarin as these are the languages offered in the MYP. These are introductory and as such mostly listening and speaking skills with an introduction to reading and writing. These classes will now run in a similar manner to the Mother tongue programme, with parents hiring the tutors. This programme is offered to students in G1 and above who are not in EAL, as I’m sure you can appreciate, it is important that all students are accessing the curriculum before attempting other languages.

Our full language policy can be found here.