Pictured are Gavilan Peak third gradersIsabel Powers – 1st place, Averi Shuey – 2nd place, Gianna Martucci – 3rd place and participants Kate Crampton, Logan Glisson, and Christian Martinez.
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Gavilan Peak students showcase their learning in annual Mandarin Speech Competition


ANTHEM – Gavilan Peak School held its 5th Annual Mandarin Speech Competition on March 3. Ninety-six students from kindergarten to 8th grade competed in individual and partner speeches, showcasing their proficiency in the Chinese language. Esteemed judges from the ASU Confucius Institute, which sponsors Gavilan Peak as one of their highly sought after Confucius Classrooms, scored students in each grade level, and asked follow-up questions in Mandarin about the content of the students' speeches. All finalists received medals, provided by ASU; certificates; and a token for an ice cream treat, donated by Sonic in Anthem.

Pictured are Gavilan Peak fourth graders Sage Sollars – 1st place, Carson Van Valer – 2nd place, and Victoria Anderson – 3rd place.

Gavilan Peak has the most established Mandarin partial immersion program in Arizona and has over 250 students in the program. Students in kindergarten through 6th grade learn math, science, and the Mandarin language arts in Mandarin for 50 percent of the day and then move to their English teacher for social studies and English language arts.

The annual Mandarin Speech Competition scores students in seven areas: preparedness, pronunciation and tones, language, fluency, volume, posture and eye contact, and follow-up questions. Students write speeches based on content learned throughout the school year and create PowerPoint presentations or posters that illustrate key points in their speeches. Partner speeches range from introductions to phone conversations to skits and songs. This year’s program included Gavilan Peak’s 8th grade Mandarin 1-2 class that is taught at Gavilan Peak for high school language credit.

For more information on Gavilan Peak School’s Mandarin program, see gavilanpeak.dvusd.org.