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Context statement

The place of the Chinese language and culture in Australia and the world
China's official language is Modern Standard Chinese, or Putonghua (the common or shared language) in Chinese.


PDF documents

Resources and support materials for the Australian Curriculum: Languages - Chinese are available as PDF documents. 
Languages - Chinese: Sequence of content
Languages - Chinese: Sequence of Achievement - Background Language Learner Pathway - F-10 …


Years 7 and 8

Years 7 and 8 Band Description

The nature of the learners

These years represent a transition to secondary school and students in this pathway are continuing to study Chinese bringing with them a capability to communicate, with some assistance, about their immediate world and China.

Chinese language learning and use

The systems of writing and speaking in Chinese are distinct. Because of the role of character learning and its impact on reading and writing, learners can accomplish a higher active use of spoken language than written language. As a result, engagement with Chinese language is primarily through speaking and listening. Students use Chinese for self-expression, to access new information and to share their knowledge and experiences with others. Pinyin remains an important tool for learning the sound of new words, associating sounds with characters, and creating digital texts in characters.

Contexts of interaction

Students actively use Chinese in a range of everyday contexts for purposes such as socialising with peers, transacting and getting things done, sharing information and engaging in performance with a range of known participants, including native speakers and peers.

Texts and resources

Students explore a range of written texts, developing strategies to interpret meaning where not all characters are known. They read, respond to and create digital texts, including blogs, biographies and opinion pieces, using a variety of technologies and software.

Features of Chinese language use

Chinese is the language of instruction and interaction, and is used in more elaborate ways as students extend their knowledge of the grammatical system and its use through spoken and written communication. Students experiment with language, exploring how cultural meanings are expressed. They analyse how messages are conveyed across languages, and apply their skills in mediating between Chinese and English in different contexts and situations. Classroom discussions focus on exploring and extending their range of contexts and audiences as they develop their personal communication skills.

Level of support

Students are supported to develop increasing autonomy as language learners and users, to self-monitor, and to adjust language in response to their experience in diverse contexts.

The role of English

English is used as appropriate to allow for explanation and discussion on issues associated with analysis of language, reflection on experiences, and comparisons across languages and cultures.

Years 7 and 8 Content Descriptions


Initiate and sustain interactions with peers and familiar adults to plan and arrange activities or social events in the context of the school or local community, and vary spoken language in response to the needs and demands of other participants

[Key concepts: event, celebration, experience; Key processes: transacting, negotiating, suggesting, requesting, explaining] (ACLCHC049 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Numeracy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Personal and Social Capability
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • participating in conversations about personal experiences, expressing opinions about what is common to these experiences, for example, 我们的老师教我们很多东西。我们都很喜欢他
  • comparing feelings about music, TV programs or sports, and asking questions to seek ideas, request repetition, clarify meaning (for example, 你喜欢看电视,不是吗?) and enhance mutual understanding, for example, A: 我不太喜欢听流行音乐,我更喜欢摇滚乐,因为摇滚乐很有意思。B: 古典音乐怎么样?古典音乐也不错
  • negotiating with peers in relation to school policies and procedures, by affirming, accepting, clarifying, suggesting and recommending, for example, 小明,明天去动物园要穿校服吗?
  • visiting Chinese-owned stores in the local area and specifying number or nature of items required; requesting, negotiating and accepting prices; and completing transactions, for example, 我们什么时候去…?, 我们去哪儿买?, 我们要买什么?
  • participating in class role-plays of shopping scenarios, including expressing opinions about quality of goods (for example, 这条红色的裤子真好看), making comparisons with the same product or service from other retailers or service providers (for example, 他要一百块,你要一百三十块), and expressing satisfaction or dissatisfaction with price, for example, 太贵了
  • negotiating with classmates to determine an appropriate gift for an overseas visitor, acknowledging ideas and opinions of others and expressing agreement (for example, 好的) or disagreement, and offering alternatives, for example, 我觉得巧克力不好,考拉拼图怎么样?
Correspond with peers and other familiar participants to plan activities, and compare opinions on and attitudes towards different cultures

[Key concepts: relationship, experience, community; Key processes: sharing perspectives, exchanging, corresponding] (ACLCHC050 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Capability
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Personal and Social Capability
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • exchanging personal information via social networking sites, for example, 你是哪国人?你喜欢学习汉语吗?
  • sharing information about life in different cultural contexts, expressing ideas and opinions, for example, 中国人喜欢吃米饭,澳大利亚人喜欢吃面包,你呢?
  • sharing opinions about school or family life, including 我的学校,我的老师,我的好朋友, 我的一家人, and linking ideas to explain and support a position or view, for example, 我的姐姐喜欢音乐,也很喜欢体育; 我除了踢足球以外,还打板球。我觉得运动很有意思


Analyse and summarise relevant information obtained from a range of spoken sources and convey this information to known audiences through a range of texts

[Key concepts: fact/fiction, representation, perspective, choice; Key processes: summarising, identifying, comparing, sequencing] (ACLCHC051 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Personal and Social Capability
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • documenting specific details of events, customs and lifestyles presented in multimodal sources such as video clips and face-to-face interviews in order to summarise the information, for example, 中国人很喜欢喝茶, 澳大利亚人喜欢喝咖啡
  • listening to and viewing celebrity interviews, news reports and documentaries to identify key information such as names of people and places, time and date, attitude and opinions, for example, 秦始皇,西安,北京, 星期三,…很可怕,我很喜欢她,她是一个很棒的演员
  • listening to and viewing factual spoken texts and paying attention to voice, gesture and language choice to identify the strength of opinion or degree of emotion expressed, for example, recognising strong dislike expressed in 我一点儿也不喜欢 compared to 我不喜欢
  • interviewing teachers or other familiar adults about their experiences (for example, 他小时候每天都骑自行车) and presenting this information to the class, quoting the source of information [有人说;她告诉我;根据这个节目介绍
Locate, classify and organise relevant information, including analysing data in simple diagrams, tables and graphs, and re-present this information for known audiences

[Key concepts: lifestyle, change, trends, place; Key processes: summarising, comparing, contrasting] (ACLCHC052 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Numeracy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • comparing travel brochures to identify places of interest, public transport information and activities
  • recognising the word/phrase boundaries in 我们学校/有/二百八十七个学生 and applying knowledge of Chinese information-sequencing rules, for example, using the knowledge that Chinese speakers organise information from most general to most specific in order to locate details in a Chinese address
  • identifying the common organising categories in tables or graphs, for example, deducing that 国籍 means ‘nationality’ by determining the meanings of 中国,澳大利亚 etc. in a table column


Engage with imaginative texts, observing how characters, emotions and attitudes are portrayed, express opinions about these aspects of an imagined experience and apply this knowledge in their own performances and texts

[Key concept: emotion; Key processes: expressing, responding, performing] (ACLCHC053 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Personal and Social Capability
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • identifying how features of performance, including the use of posture, movement, voice, images and sound, are used to convey different emotions and attitudes, for example, 她跑得很快; 音乐听起来很轻快; 森林里很暗; 我很害怕
  • writing a short dialogue about an emotion and performing it in groups
  • expressing and justifying their music preferences, for example 我喜欢这首歌,因为歌词很美
  • producing short performances, for example, a skit about celebrating Spring Festival, a simple lyric for a song about school life, or a rap about being a student of Chinese
  • noticing how emotion is expressed in song, film or poems and discussing its impact on listeners and viewers
  • reflecting on the language, beliefs and values of characters in traditional and modern literature and Chinese popular culture, and comparing different students’ responses to the same story, event, character or place, for example, viewing excerpts from contemporary films and discussing personal responses to and the sociocultural context of the film
Create written imaginative texts to describe experiences involving imagined people and places

[Key concepts: imagination, creativity, emotion, love, hate; Key processes: expressing, responding] (ACLCHC054 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Personal and Social Capability
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • collaboratively creating stories with imagined characters and settings, capturing the characters’ experiences in different cultures, for example, 《James在上海
  • writing a creative account of an imagined experience with Chinese visitors in the local community, such as hosting a Chinese student or taking a tour group to a local sporting event
  • writing a recount of an adventure, for example, 《xxx历险记》
  • using descriptive language to set the scene and capture the reader’s imagination, for example, describing the sound of traffic and the smell of breakfast stalls on a busy morning in a Chinese town
  • exploring how alternative words can be used to convey varying attitudes and degrees of emotion towards people, places and events, for example, 我真高兴。你快乐吗?他很幸福!


Translate texts for different audiences varying the language to explain key points for these different audiences

[Key concepts: equivalence, meaning; Key processes: translating, experimenting, comparing] (ACLCHC055 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Capability
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • identifying the challenges of translating some concepts (for example, ‘descendant of dragon’, 龙的传人), and developing strategies to overcome these challenges, for example: What is lost in translation? Why can’t we just translate word for word? Why does context matter?
  • translating short phrases or texts, noting culture-specific words and phrases and discussing alternatives, equivalence or non-equivalence
  • discussing reasons for producing different versions of texts for different audiences
  • describing the impact of subtle differences in language use and the way meanings are implied rather than explicitly stated, for example, the use of to indirectly reject or refuse others in 我能来看看你吗? --- 不太好吧?
  • avoiding literal (word-for-word) translations when trying to convey the intended meaning, for example, mediating a response to a compliment such as 你的衣服真漂亮。 ---- 哪有啊?
  • reading bilingual signs in places such as restaurants, shops, pools, schools, hospitals and construction sites (for example, 出口 — ‘exit’, 入口 — ‘entrance’), determining the effectiveness of the English translations and analysing possible reasons for such interpretations
  • comparing word choices for warnings across languages, and discussing ways language is used to convey rules, expectations and permission, for example, comparing 闲人免进 to ‘Staff Only’
  • exploring a range of dictionaries, including online translation tools, and considering how these tools help or hinder in Chinese learning
Create short bilingual texts on topics of personal interest and on key content from other learning areas and provide subtitles or commentary to assist meaning

[Key concepts: bilingualism, identity; Key processes: translating, interpreting] (ACLCHC056 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • translating special terms from their favourite subjects into Chinese, for example, 加、减、乘、除
  • producing bilingual instructions for classmates, explaining how to perform a particular activity relating to their favourite game or subject
  • preparing a voiceover text in Chinese for a video presentation about the Chinese language program or the school environment and adjusting anything that is unclear before voice recording


Reflect on the cultural significance of how different groups and members of groups name themselves and are represented by others

[Key concepts: identity, group, name; Key processes: describing, considering, reflecting, developing] (ACLCHC057 - Scootle )

  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Personal and Social Capability
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • comparing Chinese and western cultural symbols, for example, the symbol of the dragon, across western and Chinese cultures
  • sharing information about their own membership of diverse groups and exploring how this is expressed in Chinese, for example, 每年春节小明的妈妈都会包饺子。安娜的妈妈每年圣诞节都烤火鸡
  • exploring the role of language in the formation and expression of identity, for example: Why does my classmate go to Chinese school on Saturday? Why do I speak Chinese to my teacher but feel strange speaking it to my classmates?
  • analysing expressions of identity encountered in Chinese texts and interactions, and comparing these with their own assumptions about Chinese people and with their own expressions of identity, for example, 龙的传人 (descendant of dragon)
  • identifying the differences of meaning of multiple terms use to convey a similar concept, for example, comparing representations of foreigners in 外国人有一些不同的习俗 to 老外都很奇怪
  • reflecting on their own cultural values and norms, comparing them to those of Chinese speakers, and asking, for example: Which of my own values are non-negotiable, and which Chinese values do I feel I should validate and support?

Systems of language

Examine differences in sounds and tones, and patterns of sound flow in speech (ACLCHU058 - Scootle )
  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • discriminating between sounds heard in oral discourse, including the range of vowel and consonant combinations, for example, ‘qin’ versus ‘qing’ and ‘chi’ versus ‘ci’
  • examining the diverse meanings of words that share similar sounds (for example, the many meanings of the sound ‘shi’), and learning how to differentiate between 同音词 and 近音词 in different contexts, for example, 买东西/卖东西
  • comparing examples of regional variations in pronunciation, for example, the Beijing use of and the southern pronunciation of ‘shi’ and ‘si’
  • listening to interactions between unfamiliar voices at diverse speeds or levels of clarity to develop auditory and comprehension skills
Interpret texts by inferring meaning from common character components or position of components, and analyse how reliable this method is in translating (ACLCHU059 - Scootle )
  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • estimating the probable sound and meaning of characters based on understanding of familiar radicals and phonetic sides when reading unfamiliar texts, for example, 鸡 鸭 鹅 莺; 但 担 旦 胆
  • analysing characters containing a common component or side, for example, explaining the features of position, phonetic function and range of sounds in the characters 请 清 情 晴 精 睛 猜
  • describing characters to classmates by naming their components or sides in sequence, for example, (‘standing man’) on the left, (‘words’) on the right =
  • exploring the use of diverse character-morphemes to express similar ideas (for example, identifying multiple characters for ‘food’ — 饭、菜、食、餐), and organising and classifying words containing these characters to understand their context of use, for example, 早饭、中国菜、食物、餐厅
  • recognising the two-syllable preference in Chinese nouns, and applying this understanding when reading for meaning in words with suffixes such as 学校、学生、学习
  • exploring the nature of common idioms (成语) and inferring their meanings based on the meanings of individual morphemes and contexts of use, for example, 年年有余、人山人海
Identify and apply features of Chinese grammar and sentence structure to organise and sequence ideas in oral and written texts (ACLCHU060 - Scootle )
  • Literacy
  • Numeracy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • comparing ways in which tense is expressed in Chinese, for example, to indicate completion; to indicate the achievement of a desired result; to indicate intention; verb negation (没有) to indicate incomplete past; and 正在 to indicate action in progress
  • exploring the use of diverse time expressions and ways to sequence events in time, for example, 先…然后; 一…就…; …了,就…;才; 第一;然后
  • comparing the functions of prepositions, and discussing the importance of context when determining their meaning in texts, for example, 跟;对;给
  • exploring and applying the use of conjunctions to sequence and connect ideas when constructing texts, for example, 不但…而且…;虽然…但是…
  • using different ways to negate ideas depending on degree of formality or emphasis, for example, 我不是…;我哪儿有…?;我没有办法…;我不能…;不行; 别 ; 不准
Analyse how authors adjust features of different text types for different purposes and audiences (ACLCHU061 - Scootle )
  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • comparing diverse genres with similar topics (for example, 生日会的安排 and 我的生日日记), recognising the differences in purpose, focus of information and language choice
  • analysing and explaining the organisation and development of ideas or an argument in a range of genres, including textual features such as paragraphing

Language variation and change

Investigate the extent and dynamic nature of Chinese language use locally and globally (ACLCHU062 - Scootle )
  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • exploring the ways in which Chinese language use is fostered among local communities and the use of Chinese in local media such as community radio, TV, newspapers and magazines
  • exploring the use of 普通话 as a lingua franca in Chinese-speaking communities, and identifying terms used in different regions to express a similar idea, for example, 普通话 versus 国语;达人 vs 高手
  • viewing words in 繁体字 in familiar contexts and applying their understanding of the simplification process to determine the possible meanings and the 简体字 equivalent, for example, 个-個;说-說; 边-邊
  • discussing the use of 繁体字 and 简体字 in Chinese-speaking communities today, including the revival of 繁体字 and the spread of 简体字 in diverse communities
  • examining how globalisation is impacting on Chinese values and language use, for example, how responses to praise are shifting to reflect a western concept of gratitude (谢谢) rather than the modesty of the past (哪里哪里)
  • reading texts consisting of 名人名言 (such as 孔子说:有朋自远方来,不亦乐乎), and discussing the cultural meaning of the quote and how it is relevant to contemporary language use
Explain how the Chinese language adapts to social and technological changes (ACLCHU063 - Scootle )
  • Literacy
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Capability
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • enquiring into the use of internet language, including numerical representations of words (for example, 55555 = 呜呜他在哭) as a means of private communication among youth
  • exploring the use of mobile phones and the internet to replace old ways of communication, for example, texting or emailing New Year greetings instead of going to 拜年 in person
  • comparing features of correspondence and the circumstances in which some forms of correspondence are preferred, for example, why 贺节短信 is popular as a way to save time and money
  • exploring the ways in which new words and phrases are incorporated into everyday communication in Chinese, for example, how English expressions of emotion ( happy ) are used in chat forums and text messaging, and how Pinyin abbreviations are used to replace characters (L P = 老婆)
  • examining how the adaptation of words reflects and encourages cultural change, for example, gender equality is reflected in the use of 妳 to address females and 他们 to include both men and women

The role of language and culture

Compare and reflect on how cultural contexts influence the way language is used within and across communities (ACLCHU064 - Scootle )
  • Literacy
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Intercultural Understanding
  • Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia
  • identifying the things they take for granted in communication (for example, a shared understanding of gesture, body language and nuances), and reflecting on how these aspects may be interpreted differently by others
  • discussing how language use varies between communities, and reflecting on how communication is shaped by a community’s geographical location, languages and cultures, for example, 计算机 / 电脑, 哪儿 / 哪里
  • reflecting on how particular words of cultural significance may be interpreted differently by others, for example, ‘mate’ in Australian context and 兄弟 in Chinese context
  • inferring the relationship of participants in a spoken interaction by observing word choices and gestures, for example, 老张 / 张校长/张小明, and asking: What titles and terms of address are used for individuals in Chinese? How do these titles compare to English practices?

Years 7 and 8 Achievement Standards

By the end of Year 8, students use spoken and written Chinese to sustain interactions in a range of social and personal contexts. They exchange ideas and opinions, for example, 你要去看电影吗?;我们可以六月份一起去. They summarise the main points of information about known content from a range of spoken and print sources (for example, 电视节目,podcast, 电话留言广告老师推荐的网站书籍图书馆目录游记), and convey the relevant information in a range of texts. Students respond to and create simple imaginative and informative texts. Sentences generally contain two or more ideas connected by cohesive devices (for example, 不但…而且…; 因为… 所以…), as well as time expressions (for example, 先…再…), and tense markers such as 了、完 to sequence events and ideas. Students make comparisons (for example, 比; 跟…一样), and provide explanations or reasons for opinions or decisions, using phrases that order and link their ideas. They use reported speech to refer to the ideas of others, for example, 他们认为. They speak with attention to pronunciation, tone and phrasing, using intonation and pitch to add emotion or emphasis to their message. They demonstrate intercultural understanding by varying their language use for different audiences and purposes.

Students describe the distinctive spoken and written language systems of Chinese using metalanguage. They know that character components can contribute to both sound and meaning of words and they understand how they can be combined to make different words, for example, 中国, 城, 中国城. They identify features of text types such as letters, emails, descriptions and narratives. Students identify how information is structured in Chinese texts, and understand the importance of cultural and contextual cues to correct interpretation of meaning. They explain how features of Chinese culture impact on communication practices, and reflect on their own interactions with Chinese-speaking people.