English education in Hong Kong is best seen from two perspectives: the institutionalized form of English teaching that sees English as the main medium of instruction, and the non-institutionalized form of English education that saw it merely as a foreign language taught alongside Chinese. English education in Hong Kong is multicultural because it incorporates many cultures, including British, Indian, Chinese, Indonesian, Korean, and a variety of others. While there is no English curriculum in English schools, English education is incorporating these different cultures through music, drama, dance, and other forms of expression through its various forms of media. English Secondary schools, for example, are integrating music, dance, and drama into English lessons to create a rich learning experience, promoting interaction and cross-cultural communication.
English education in Hong Kong has been influenced by developments in China's economy and policy toward English speakers and their communities. English education in Hong Kong, therefore, has adopted policies similar to those of China's Ministry of Education, which encourage the use of English and discourage the education of Chinese in English-only environments. The Chinese government has also promoted the development of English culture learning, encouraging English speakers to learn English culture at the same time.
English education in Hong Kong uses the combined methods of the institutionalized education system and the non-institutionalized v. tickle method. English education in Hong Kong follows a policy of "one English, one Chinese, and one Chinese." As a result, English instruction does not separate the English speakers from those who are not English speakers, or who are Chinese speakers but have no English language at all. The dual nature of English at this period in history contributes greatly to the richness of the language. The continual contact between English speakers and people who speak other languages (especially Chinese and Cantonese) in addition to English speakers makes English even more diverse and useful as a global language.
English education in Hong Kong follows a common curriculum with some variations from the mainland Chinese system. English education in Hong Kong incorporates a curriculum based on English literature, including the works of such authors as John Cowper Powys, Samuel Taylor Coles, George Eliot, and Charles Dickens. English literature and the experience of living in England provide the context in which English education operates. An English language teacher, for instance, may teach a class about the Shakepeak poem by John Keats and the Shrovehouse ghost story by Coles. These texts form part of a class package that will then be used in English language teaching at a local university.
Pre-education and childhood English programs, such as the CELTA examination developed by English language teachers in Hong Kong, also give emphasis to reading and writing skills. In kindergarten and elementary school English teachers often introduce children to the English language using a modified version of the English language syllabus. This curriculum is based on the teaching of English in schools in England. In Hong Kong, the English education ministry has developed a series of books, such as the Virtual English Class, that are designed to prepare English learners for life in the mainland. The books are also useful for those who wish to teach English in Hong Kong.
English education in Hong Kong concentrates on reading and writing, both English mother tongue and Mandarin Chinese. English education in Hong Kong emphasizes the importance of a comprehensive curriculum, including English textbooks, Lesson Plans for English learners, and English verbal exercises. English education in Hong Kong also incorporates a strong interest in history and English culture and education systems that have shaped the language and its evolution.
English education in Hong Kong combines practical teaching with theory. English teachers encourage students to ask questions, to listen to and examine questions and answers, and to participate in discussions. English teachers also help their students develop reading and writing habits that will be useful in the future. English teaching in Hong Kong is characterized by a strong emphasis on teaching the English language to the widest number of people as possible. English is taught primarily at the English language school or ELS - an acronym for English language, school, and teaching - rather than at the local secondary and high schools.
English education in Hong Kong combines traditional teaching methods with a variety of approaches. English is taught through CD-ROMs and through the Internet. English is also taught as a foreign language in many foreign universities and learning institutes. English is also taught to English speaking countries, particularly China, through teaching posts and exchange visits.