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Tower of Babel or Garden of Eden? Teaching English as a Foreign Language Through a Translanguaging Lens

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Part of the Educational Linguistics book series (EDUL,volume 45)

Abstract

This chapter discusses the use of translanguaging pedagogy for learning English with young learners (kindergarten and elementary school level) in the context of the officially bilingual Province of Friesland, the Netherlands (with Dutch and the regional minority language Frisian). First, a holistic model for multilingualism in education (Duarte, 2017 (Meer Kansen Met Meertaligheid) NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences, Leeuwarden, The Netherlands; 2017) and its relation to teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) is presented. The model places pedagogical practices along a continuum, oscillating between the acknowledgement of languages and their full use in education. Then examples of multilingual activities for TESOL – combining a translanguaging approach with several multilingual approaches such as language awareness and Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) methodologies – will be discussed, drawn from two research projects set in the Province of Friesland. Exemplary transcripts from English classrooms will also be presented and discussed in which we focus on the role of translanguaging in interaction, distinguishing three types of functions: symbolic, scaffolding and epistemological. The chapter ends with a reflection on the extent to which translanguaging within the context of TESOL in primary education causes a Tower of Babel or is perceived by schools to be a Garden of Eden.

Keywords

  • TESOL
  • Translanguaging
  • Multilingual approaches
  • Holistic approach

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Correspondence to Mirjam Günther-van der Meij .

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Günther-van der Meij, M., Duarte, J. (2020). Tower of Babel or Garden of Eden? Teaching English as a Foreign Language Through a Translanguaging Lens. In: Tian, Z., Aghai, L., Sayer, P., Schissel, J.L. (eds) Envisioning TESOL through a Translanguaging Lens. Educational Linguistics, vol 45. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-47031-9_11

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-47031-9_11

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