If learning a second language during elementary school is an important value for your family, enroll in Minnetonka's Language Immersion Program beginning in Kindergarten!
Minnetonka Public Schools is home to Minnesota's largest Language Immersion Program with more than 2,000 elementary students enrolled in our full-immersion program. Chinese is offered as a school-within-a-school program at Excelsior
and Scenic Heights
Elementary Schools. About half of all Kindergarten students at each school enroll in Chinese Immersion and half enroll in the English Kindergarten program. All Minnetonka Chinese Immersion teachers are native speakers.
In our Immersion Program, 100% of the classroom instruction is taught in Chinese in grades K-2. Students begin English Language Arts and reading instruction in third grade. Our students perform exceedingly well in both English and Chinese. By fifth grade, our Chinese Immersion students score as well on English reading and writing tests as their peers in the English program.
Minnetonka School District has had a strong connection with China and Chinese education for over 25 years. We have been exchanging teachers with Hangzhou Foreign Language and teaching Chinese language and culture since 1985. We have established sister schools from Hangzhou and Beijing for our High School, Middle School and Elementary Schools. In addition, we have exchanged students at every level in order to enrich our understanding and exchange cultural values between our two great nations.
Why Learn Chinese?
Chinese is spoken by one-fifth of the world’s population and is ranked number one among first languages spoken. Learning Chinese will open many career opportunities for individuals who can acquire native-like fluency.
Minnetonka has a longstanding, positive history teaching Chinese Language. Minnetonka was one of the first school districts in Minnesota to offer Chinese as a world language in 1989. Today, more than 750 students (K-12) study Chinese in Minnetonka. All Chinese Elementary Immersion teachers in Minnetonka are native speakers.
Sister school arrangements with elementary and high schools in Xian, Beijing and Hangzhou allow students to have authentic exchange experiences. Each year, Minnetonka also hosts an exchange teacher from the Hangzhou Foreign Language School. In turn, Minnetonka teachers have taught in Hangzhou and Beijing.
Since China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001, both our State and Federal government have made Chinese language and culture an important educational investment. China's growing economic presence will only make Chinese Language more of a factor in a global economy. Currently, China holds the largest portion of American debt and is quickly becoming one of the world's economic superpowers. Many Minnetonka businesses regularly conduct business with China.