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An Odd Couple? Literacy and Multilingualism in Day Care Centers

  • Lars HolmEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Educational Linguistics book series (EDUL, volume 39)

Abstract

In order to understand literacy and language in education, it is no longer enough to direct research attention to schools and universities. In the Nordic countries, day care centers have become important arenas for numerous political initiatives intending to enhance children´s language and literacy learning. The poor results of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) have drawn much attention to literacy and language in day care centers and resulted in the development of a considerable number of interventions intended to improve children’s literacy and language skills. In this chapter changes in categorizations in Danish day care centers are analyzed focusing on the interplay between language and literacy and multilingual learners. The analysis reveals that the space for multilingualism is considerably narrowed or even deleted when the concept of language is moving closer to a PISA-related concept of literacy, and that standardized, and age-appropriate measurements of language and literacy appear as a monolingual construct reflecting theoretical assumptions related to the “factory-like nature of mass schooling” (Anderson-Lewitt, Behind schedule: batch-produced children in French and US classrooms. In: Levinson BH et al (ed) The cultural production of the educated person. Suny Press, New York, 1996). The implications of this development for multilingual children´s language learning in day care centers and for education of migrant children in general are discussed.

Keywords

Day care centers PISA Interventions Conceptualization of literacy Categorizations Multilingual learners 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Danish School of Education (DPU)Aarhus UniversityCopenhagenDenmark

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