LAKE GEORGE Lake George is half a world away from Beijing or Singapore, but students will soon have the opportunity to learn the Chinese language. Beginning in September, Mandarin Chinese will be offered to Lake George High School students. Its the language of the 21st century, said Lake George Principal David Eagle. Mandarin Chinese is the number one spoken language in the world and on the internet. Eagle said that Chinese is a different kind of language than the Romance languages like French or Spanish that are routinely taught in high schools. Its a picture language, a tonal language, and it doesnt have conjugations like the Romance languages, he said. Theres also no male or female like in French or Spanish. Mandarin Chinese will be taught by a teacher that will be shared with the Queensbury school district as well, where Mandarin Chinese will also be offered. Eagle said that the class will be a basic introduction to the language, and will include learning how to write the characters. Well also be having cultural discussions in class as well, he said. The language is being taught to give students an edge after high school. Eagle said that one of this countrys biggest trading partners is China. Seventy percent of what you buy at Wal-Mart was made in China, he said. It is the language of the future. He said the school has held some focus groups about learning Mandarin Chinese and there is a lot of interest. The goal is not to become fluent in the language, he said, but to be able to communicate in a respectful way. Itll give the kids an edge in college applications and in future careers, he said.