Additional information in German available on German version of page.

Block, D. 2007. Bilingualism: Four assumptions and four responses. In Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching, 1,1: 66-82.
Embedded in ongoing debates about multiculturalism in nation-states such as the UK are frequent references to bilingualism. These references range from negative assessments of the phenomenon to more positive views. In this paper, I present and critique four assumptions that are often made about bilinguals and bilingualism, not only by the lay public but also by academics. I conclude with some thoughts on how my discussion of bilingualism might be relevant to the readers of Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching.

Cummins, J. 1996. Negotiating identities: Education for empowerment in a diverse society.
Ontario: California Association for Bilingual Education.

The book focuses on power relations operating in the broader society and how they influence the interactions that occur between teachers and students in the classroom. These interactions can be empowering or disempowering for both teachers and students. It is argued that culturally diverse students are disempowered educationally. This implies that the students will succeed academically to the extent that the patterns of interaction in school reverse those that prevail in the society at large. A commitment to helping all students succeed academically requires the educators to challenge aspects of the power structure in the wider society.

Cummins, Jim (2004): Language, power and pedagogy - bilingual children in the crossfire.
Clevedon [u.a.]: Multilingual Matters.

Cummins, J. 2006. Identity texts: The imaginative construction of self through multiliteracies pedagogy.
In O. Garcia, T. Skutnabb-Kangas & E. Torres-Guzmán, María (eds.) Imagining multilingual schools. Language in education and globalization. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters, 51–68.

The article highlights the centrality of the interpersonal space created in the interactions among teachers and learners. Optimal academic development within this interpersonal space occurs only when there is both maximum cognitive engagement and maximum identity investment on the part of learners.

Gravelle, Maggie (ed.) 2000. Planning for bilingual learners:
an inclusive curriculum. Stoke on Trent. Trentham Books

This book seeks to give teachers advice on developing the language ability of multilingual children, especially with regard to English as the majority language of the society. The ideas presented here do not only want to provide insight into the theories of second and foreign language learning, but also to give interested teaching staff teaching ideas that can be used in real life situations directly.

Lehtinen, K. 2006. Maahanmuuttajataustainen oppilas äidinkielen ja kirjallisuuden tunneilla. In S. Grünthal & J. Pentikäinen (eds.) Kulmakivi. Luokanopettajan äidinkieli ja kirjallisuus. Otava. 84–103.[An immigrant pupil in the class of mothertongue and literature]
The article deals with the pedagogical issues concerning e.g. how to evaluate language skills, how to teach language via literature and how to support the learner in raising vocabulary.

Leung, C., Harris, R. and Rampton, B. 1997. The idealised native speaker, reified ethnicities and classroom realities.
In TESOL Quarterly, 31, 3 Language and Identity, 543-560.

This offers an account of the complexities of the multilingual classroom, in which traditional assumptions about the notion of the native speaker (of English) and of the homogeneous nature of learners of English as a Second Language are challenged.

Luukka, M-R., Pöyhönen, S., Huhta, A., Taalas, P., Tarnanen, M. & Keränen, A. 2008. Maailma muuttuu - mitä tekee koulu? Äidinkielen ja vieraiden kielten tekstikäytänteet koulussa ja vapaa-ajalla.
[The world changes – how does the school respond? Mother tongue and foreign language literacy practices in school and in free-time.] University of Jyväskylä: Centre for Applied Language Studies.

The project dealt with literacy practices of Finnish and immigrant students and teachers of mother tongue and foreign languages. The aim of the project was to explore and interpret literacy practices both in school and out-of-school contexts. The project aimed also to evaluate to what extent Finnish school is able to meet the challenges of the knowledge society, to explore pedagogies and teaching practices that prepare young people for the literacy challenges of globalized, networked and culturally diverse world and, finally, to develop proposals for interventions in teaching, curriculum planning, assessment and teacher education.
Project website: [visited 26.4.2009]

Safford, K. and Costley T. 2008. 'I didn't speak for the first year': Silence, Self-Study and Student Stories of English Language Learning in Mainstream Education
In Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching, 2,2: 136-151.

The paper draws on interviews with 17- and 18-year-old students learning English as an Additional Language (EAL) in mainstream secondary schools in the UK, where the students describe their experiences as new arrivals and their resources and strategies for accessing and learning English in multiple social and academic contexts. Silence and self-study emerge as key survival strategies for these students, whilst multilingual family and friendship networks play key roles in supporting their day-to-day schoolwork and future ambitions. In these student narratives, school policies and practices do not appear to take account of the multilayered nature of learning English for a wide range of purposes which demand the integration of discrete linguistic skills with culturally situated registers and practices. Although the UK daily grows more, not less, multilingual, interviews over several years with different cohorts of students learning EAL seem to suggest that their experiences and strategies have not changed. The paper reflects on how the mainstream classroom looks and sounds to such students, and how their voices might effectively influence pedagogy and practice in these contexts.


Bookmark and Share