Pearl Mandarin           Founder’s Message           Our Teachers           The Pearl Method

Pearl Mandarin

Pearl Mandarin was established in 2015 as a play-based and academic Mandarin program, which uses leading Mandarin learning materials designed to motivate students to start speaking Mandarin.

At Pearl Mandarin, we believe that learning Mandarin can be successfully achieved with proper step-by-step cumulative instruction. Our programs are designed to follow a child’s natural language development. Listening and speaking are emphasized at the early stages and Chinese character recognition and typing are introduced later on.

We understand that students are not going to learn unless they are having fun. Through stories, songs, games and crafts, we strive to make each class fun and memorable.

Pearl Mandarin programs are taught in classrooms and in private/semi-private settings.

  • Jennifer & Lincoln

    Lincoln said “膝盖” (knees) yesterday during bath time! He must have learned it from Mandarin Storytime.

    JenniferMother of Lincoln (22 mo)
  • Jennifer & Caden

    Caden came back from Taiwan saying “喂!” (hello!)

    JenniferMother of Caden (12 mo)
  • You have set a high bar with your Mandarin Storytime program. We love it!

    TracyMother of Emma (18 mo)
  • Corey & Matthew

    I was at Costco the other day and a woman asked me where the 冰淇淋 (ice-cream) was. I knew what she was talking about from Matthew’s Mandarin Storytime class!

    CoreyFather of Matthew (21 mo)
  • _R2A2338

    Our family loves practicing the Mandarin we learn from Little Dragons together. We practice in the car on long drives. 我爱我的爸爸 ( I love my father).

    KatieMother of Knute (6 yrs) and Tor (4 yrs)
  • Eugene & Jaden

    The Little Dragons classes have really helped my sons be more confident in talking to their grandma in Taiwan via Skype.

    AnnaMother of Eugene (7 yrs) and Jaden (5 yrs)

Founder’s Message

你好!Welcome and thank you for your interest in Pearl Mandarin.

When my son was born, I started searching for a fun but academic way for him to learn Mandarin. When I could not find such a program, I began creating my own curriculum. What started as a hobby quickly fuelled into a passion and this is how Pearl Mandarin emerged.

When I was a child, my mother made me attend Mandarin classes for up to three hours every Saturday morning. I didn’t appreciate the archaic texts that we had to commit to memory, nor did I appreciate sitting at the kitchen table on Friday nights frantically filling out boxes on a sheet of paper with various strokes – left to right, top to bottom. Some Saturday mornings I woke up with tears as I dreaded attending Chinese class.

As a young child, I had a genuine desire to understand my Chinese heritage and language but yet I found it so difficult. There was Cantonese, Mandarin, Hakka and Fukien. There was 汉字,ㄅㄆㄇㄈ, mā, má, mă, and mà. All of this confused me.

The challenges of learning Chinese gnawed at me year in and year out. Learning the language seemed so difficult and yet I knew it was something I needed to do.

In an effort to catch the last slow boat to China, I accepted a scholarship offered by the Chinese and Canadian governments to study Mandarin in Beijing. I learned Mandarin quickly through immersion and new methods of learning Chinese that were introduced to me by expatriates.

When I was in Beijing, I met people from all corners of the world from Saudi Arabia to Benin who were all studying Mandarin in China. Our homes were miles apart and we had very little in common but through Mandarin we were able to communicate and connect.

When I returned to Canada, my skill in being able to speak Mandarin proved invaluable. I have been able to have so many interesting conversations with people from China and Taiwan. These were opportunities I never imagined I could have.

Looking back, I wish I paid more attention during my childhood Mandarin lessons but I also wish the classes were more interesting and effective. I cannot change history for myself but I can do something to provide a little more opportunity for my child and yours.

At Pearl Mandarin, we hope that your child learns to appreciate and embrace the Mandarin language and Chinese culture. We hope that the Mandarin language becomes just one of the many pearls of wisdom your child and family will discover.

Ai-Ling Lin, Founder

Our Teachers

Our teachers are first and foremost passionate about teaching Mandarin and love working with children. They are early childhood educators and elementary school teachers. Most teachers have extra training in music or the visual arts.

We are always looking to add to our strong and dynamic team. If you are interested in a teaching position at Pearl Mandarin, please email your resume to

The PEARL Method

Practical – At Pearl Mandarin, we want your child to learn practical and relevant Mandarin. For example, words and phrases they can say and use in the playground. We use leading Mandarin learning materials designed to motivate students to start speaking Mandarin.

Educational – Pearl Mandarin emphasizes learning Mandarin, not memorizing Mandarin. A Pearl Mandarin education merges Eastern content and culture with Western pedagogical principles.

Accessible – At Pearl Mandarin, we are accessible. We stay connected throughout the week through email whether it is for homework submission, transmission of video clips or just to answer a question you may have.

Revolutionary – Pearl Mandarin is revolutionary in the sense that we do not believe that students learn Mandarin by writing hundreds of Chinese characters each week. Instead we focus on spoken Mandarin and encourage spoken practice at home. We do teach students to appreciate the art and history behind Chinese characters. From day one, we introduce character recognition and not long after teach students how to type Chinese.

Long-lasting – Speaking Mandarin fluently is the ultimate goal. We’ll help you get there.

Contact Us

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