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Modern Languages

A teacher helps a student in Mandarin class. 

In today’s world, knowledge of other cultures is essential.

That’s why, at Holderness, students are encouraged to master a language other than their own. To this end, the school requires two years of study in one language, and students are urged to continue beyond this minimal requirement. Thoroughness of learning is the common emphasis, and students improve their ability to speak, listen, read, and write by using the language in and out of the classroom as much as possible.

Visit our Curriculum Guide for a full list of academic requirements and course descriptions.

Featured Course

Lang. 102 | Mandarin Chinese I

A Mandarin textbook. 

Throughout this introductory course, you’ll learn about the culture of China - and develop the basic skills of reading, writing, speaking, and listening comprehension in Mandarin Chinese. Along the way, you’ll focus on fundamental skills of vocabulary, syntax, character recognition and drawing, and tonal recognition and pronunciation. 

Learning in Action

China Trip

Students pose for a photo in China. 

Each summer, a group of Holderness students depart for a two-week exploration of China. What makes this trip even more special is the generosity of Holderness families who welcome students into their homes to share their food, stories, and culture. It's a transformative trip for all who make the journey. 

Language Tables

Students sit at a language table at lunch. 

The key to learning a new language is practice. Throughout the year, language teachers host language tables at lunch, giving students a chance to practice speaking a foreign language in a practical setting. 

Meet Our Language Faculty

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