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L1 vs L2: Policies and Practices around the World Daniela Coelho, Higher College of Technology, United Arab Emirates Sunny Man Chu Lau, Bishop’s University.

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Presentation on theme: "L1 vs L2: Policies and Practices around the World Daniela Coelho, Higher College of Technology, United Arab Emirates Sunny Man Chu Lau, Bishop’s University."— Presentation transcript:

1 L1 vs L2: Policies and Practices around the World Daniela Coelho, Higher College of Technology, United Arab Emirates Sunny Man Chu Lau, Bishop’s University Jim Howden, McGill University/ University of Quebec in Montreal Stephane Lacroix, College and University of Quebec in A-T / CASLT

2 Can you imagine the context ? Humor:

3 Theoretical Foundations Cook (2001) states that for over 100 years most of the reviewed literature suggests a systematic ban of the L1 in L2 classrooms SLA literature emphasizes exclusive or optimal use of the TL when teaching (Duff and Polio 1990; Guthrie, 1987; MELS, 2006; MELS, 2007; Turnbull, 1998; Papaefthymiou-Lytra, 1987; Polio and Duff, 1994; Rolin-Ianziti and Brownlie, Wing, 1987; etc.) But does this vary from one country to another? And is there a gap between policy and practice?

4 Daniela Coelho English Faculty Higher Colleges of Technology United Arab Emirates

5 5 Living languages: 7,106 Institutional: 560 Developing: 1,563 Dying: 915* *Lewis, Simons & Fennig (eds.) Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Seventeenth edition. Texas: SIL International. Online version: Living languages: 285 Institutional: 72 Developing: 65 Dying: 50*

6 6 *Lewis, Simons & Fennig (eds.) Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Seventeenth edition. Texas: SIL International. Online version: Living languages: 285 Major official languages: see map.

7 7 *Observatório da Imigração do Alto Comissariado para a Imigração e Diálogo Intercultural (http://www.oi.acidi.gov.pt/index.php ).http://www.oi.acidi.gov.pt/index.php Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras 10.21% of the 445,262 foreign citizens living in Portugal are between 0 and 14 years old PORTUGAL (2010)* Immigrants – 445,262 / +- 4% 90 different nationalities Brazil – 26.81% Ukraine – 11.12% Cape Verde – 9.88% Romania – 8,27% Angola – 5.28% Guiné-Bissau – 4.45% UK – 3.86% China – 3.53% Moldavia – 3.51% Languages present in schools: Brazilian Portuguese African Portuguese (dialects from African ex-colonies: cape-verdian, crioulo, quimbundo, etc…) Ukrainian Romanian Mandarin English French Hindi, etc…

8 8 At least one (FL) – not compulsory in all countries One Foreign Language (FL) Learning a Foreign Language (FL) is optional (encouraged)* Two/Three FLs Kindergarten Elementary School Middle School High School *European Comission (2012)

9 9 Spanish French English German *European Comission (2012) -Eurobarometer 54% of European citizens can speak ONE Foreign Language 25% of European citizens can speak TWO Foreign Languages 10% of European citizens can speak THREE Foreign Languages European Union encourages its citizens to learn at least two foreign languages.

10 10 *European Comission (2012) -Eurobarometer “Le plurilinguisme comme ‘manière d’être en Europe” (Beacco, 2005) – Council of Europe “Language use, embracing language learning, comprises the actions performed by persons who as individuals and as social agents develop a range of competences, both general and in particular communicative language competences.” (Council of Europe, 2001)- CEFRL Listening, Reading, Spoken Interaction, Spoken Production, Writing The use of previous knowledge, including L1 or other FLs, is welcome in language learning settings in Europe; Comparing and contrasting languages is important and seen as a way of facilitating the learning process; Translation from L1 to L2 and vice-versa. (cf. Council of Europe, 2001: 145) Plurilingual and Pluricultural Competence Coste, Moore & Zarate (2009); Beacco; Byram; Coste; Fleming & Cavalli (2009)

11 11 Approaches: “ -by a combination of presentations, explanations, (drill) exercises and exploitation activities, but with L1 as the language of classroom management, explanation, etc.; - by some combination of the above [activity starting with L1 as the language of explanation and comparison,] but progressively reducing the use of L1 and including more tasks and authentic texts, spoken and written, and an increasing self- study component” (Council of Europe, 2001: 143 – Chapter 6 – Language Learning and Teaching) Plurilingual and Pluricultural Competence Coste, Moore & Zarate (2009); Beacco; Byram; Coste; Fleming & Cavalli (2009)

12 Elementary Kindergarten Grade 3 – English is compulsory FLs are optional Most KG schools teach English 12 Spanish French English German

13 Elementary Kindergarten Playful and fun classes Focus on Oral skills (oral comprehension) Listening and Speaking Intercultural domain L1 is used for teaching and learning Children are not forced to use L2* 13 French English Playful and fun classes Focus on Oral skills Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing Intercultural domain L1 is used for teaching and learning Children are not forced to use L2* * Portuguese Ministry of Education (2014); Council of Europe (2012); European Comission (2011)

14 14 en-GB/Default.aspx

15 15 852B3Adiós 853P/IAdiós come here give me a hug 854B6But Daniela I wanted to learn more 855P/I 856B6But Daniela I wanted to learn more languages with you 857P/IB1 858B1Goodbye 859P/IGoodbye! Well, you said goodbye, you said adios, what else? 860B7I know one 861P/ISo you can say it, B7 862B7*Arriberdeci 863P/IWell done! Arriverdeci. Come here to give me a big hug/ (…) B1 you love French do you want to say something in French? 864B5I want to say… 865P/IGo ahead 866B5Voir 867P/IAu revoir// bye bye 868B6But look I wanted to learn more with you 869P/IGood! Do you… 870B6I want to say something in French too 871P/ISo go ahead you can say it 872B6Uhm uhm uhm 873VShe forgot 874P/IGone/ au revoir? 875B6Au revoir 876P/IWell done! 877B6I wanted to learn more with you 878P/IOk I can always come another day and teach some more Portuguese Spanish English Italian French P/I- the teacher (me) B… - children V – KG teacher

16 16 Portuguese Spanish English Italian P/I- the teacher (me) B… - children 43 3 P/IFrog, well done! And this one? 43 4 B3Bird 43 5 P/IBird or B3*papagaiaou 43 7 P/IPapagayo. And in Italian is papagalo 43 8 B7They have the dog Use of L1 and L2 in one sentence An increased Communicative Competence

17 High School Middle School Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing and Grammar Intercultural domain L1 is used for teaching and learning Students are not forced to use L2* L2 is only required in official assessments CEFRL * Portuguese Ministry of Education (2013); Council of Europe (2012) Spanish French English German Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing and Grammar Intercultural domain L1 is used for teaching and learning Students are highly encouraged to use L2/3 more and more*

18 PortugalSpainFranceGermanyEngland 26% (English)19% (English)32% (English)36.5% (English) 15% (French) 12% (French)4% (French)14% (Spanish)13% (French)4% (German) Between years old

19 19

20 Language policy in Hong Kong: Battles over English- & Chinese- medium of instruction Dr. Sunny Man Chu Lau Bishop’s University

21 Medium of Instruction (MOI) Use of L2 as the medium of instruction (MOI): French immersion in Canada (Johnson & Swain, 1997) Dual language education (Lindholm-Leary 2001) English L2 as MOI in the Outer Circle  Kenya, Nigeria, Malaysia & Hong Kong (Evans, 2008)

22 Hong Kong (HK) 1898 British colony 99-year lease 1997 HK was returned to China “1 Country 2 Systems” HK Special Administrative Region (HKSAR)

23 Medium of Instruction Before 1978 (elitist education) Primary: mother-tongue instruction Secondary: English-medium & Chinese-medium schools After 1978 (9-year compulsory education) Secondary: 86% English-medium; 14 % Chinese-medium Mixed code  Johnson (1983) – T in Eng schools used 43% English, 48% Cantonese; 9% mixed-code Shek, Johnson & Law (1991) – 96% of the 193 Chinese schools used English textbooks for one or more subjects

24 Medium of Instruction 1997 streaming policy  114 schools were allowed to be English-medium schools 2010 “Fine-tuning” the language policy Remove the EMI & CMI labels Allow individual schools to adopt diversified arrangements based on certain criteria, e.g., T & S English abilities, support systems, etc.

25 HK Education System Highly competitive; exam-oriented English proficiency – indispensable for higher education, jobs, & social mobility

26 Use of L1 & L2 – in principle Strict enforcement of English-only policy in English classrooms & content subject classrooms School-wide English environment – using English during assemblies; encourage teachers to interact with students in English outside classroom, etc.

27 USE of L1 & L2– in reality Use of Cantonese in a English science class: 1.To provide the Chinese meaning of difficult or technical terms; 2.To explain difficult concepts; 3.To give clear instructions; 4.To establish rapport with the students (e.g. telling jokes) and 5.To allow students to raise or answer questions when they had difficulty. (Chan, 2014)

28 Use of L1 in ESL/FLS context Pennington’s (1995) study in Hong Kong shows that teachers use L1 to: Explain aspect of L2 Translate words/sentences Give instructions Check understanding Elicit language Focus class attention Talk about learning Give feedback Discipline and control Talk informally, to relate to students 1.Compensatory or strategic uses 2.Interpersonal uses 1.Compensatory or strategic uses 2.Interpersonal uses

29 Findings Fewer interactions Computer Teacher : In the past, there were more interactions for the students [in the weaker classes]. They thought that they knew many things about the computer and they were eager to express their opinion. Now, they don’t know how to do it. (Chan, 2014, p. 468)

30 Findings Rote memory rather than higher order thinking: We also learnt it in this way in the past... mechanical memorisation... After memorising the structures, it’s easier for them to write it in the future. Though I think this is not good, I have no other ways. (Chan, 2014, p. 469)

31 Findings Resorting to a teacher-centred approach Head of Science Department:...deep in their mind, the teachers believe that they cannot do activities with the students. Not only do they think that the students cannot speak, the teachers might think that they can’t speak spontaneously as well. To avoid trouble, they simply don’t do it. That’s what I see. (Chan, 2014, p. 472)

32 Conclusions Deep-seated monolingual bias; English cherished for its esteemed linguistic capital Bilinguals are often viewed as “two monolinguals in one person” (Cook, 2002; Grosjean, 2008) Exclusive use of L2  still accepted as the best practice (Turnbull & Dailey-O'Cain, 2009).

33 Stephane Lacroix Teacher in TESL at College and University of Quebec (in Abitibi-Temiscamingue) On Board of Directors, Canadian Association of Second Language Teachers

34 FSL: 100% ESL: 100% FSL: 100% ESL: L1+L2 Bilingual? ESL: 100% Bilingual FSL+ESL: 100%. Core FSL: As much as possible FSL: 100% Acknowledgement: Thanks to CASLT people! Target Language Policies in Canada

35 Application of Target Language Policies in Canada

36 Rationale Even if most parts of Canada have clear policies regarding exclusive use of the L2, most sources mentioned that this was not always respected. Examples of such TL variations were also reported: – From 10 % to 100 % of L2 (Polio and Duff, 1994) – From 24 to 72 % of L2 in Toronto (Turnbull, 1998) – From 28 % to 100 % of L2 in northern Quebec (Lacroix, 2002) –…–…

37 Position for Quebec and Most Areas in Canada A communicative second language environment should be made up of natural situations, as for the learning of a native language The critical period hypothesis suggests that the younger the learners use the L2, the better they should be able to speak it without an L1 accent or oral L1 interference (Krashen) The new language does not constitute a threat for children (Ref.: Low affective filter, Krashen)

38 Position for Quebec and Most Areas in Canada If the students do not hear their teachers speak the TL they certainly will not be inclined to speak the language Fillmore (1985) demonstrated that native language and target language should never be mixed. For her, this is the key to proficiency and it has been shown to lead to great improvement in SLA The L1 restricts the amount of time for the L2 input L2 input is also limited outside the classroom Teachers provide live and authoritative models The higher the frequency of the input, the better and faster the language learning (Brown, 2006; Larsen- Freeman, 2001; Lightbown and Spada, 2000; Nunan, 1999; Selinger, 1983)

39 Position for Quebec and Most Areas in Canada Teacher input is of utmost importance since, for many students this will be the only source of English they will hear More specifically, Turnbull (2001) found a positive connection between teachers who spoke the L2 most frequently and general proficiency measures and achievement tests of learners. Turnbull (2001) also listed four other studies that highlight a similar connection… Furthermore, Cook (2001) adds the L2 should not just be studied; it should represent the means of communication for the teacher and the learners

40 Position for Quebec and Most Areas in Canada Most (if not all) actors (teachers themselves, researchers, L2 departments, school boards, professional associations, etc.) believe teachers do not use a sufficient quantity of L2 when teaching (Franklin, 1990; Pratte, 1999; Société Radio-Canada, 2006; Turnbull, 2001;…) Even if there are some advantages to using the L1 in class, the disadvantages outweigh them in a huge way… Communication in the TL is definitely part of the solution.

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42 Wrap-up Summary Conclusion

43 L1 vs L2: Policies and Practices Not every area has an L2 usage policy When there are policies in countries, they vary a lot from place to place Even when there are policies, they are not always applied… but they can have an impact on practice …

44 Question and Discussion Period

45 Keep in Touch:     Thanks for your attention !!!


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