Wednesday, June 26, 2013

[MLE] Videos from the 3rd International English Language Teacher Educator Conference

Dear multilingual education friends,

The British Council is pleased to share the link of the videos from the 3rd International English Language Teacher Educator Conference (TEC) held in Hyderabad from 16 - 18 March 2013. The videos have been uploaded on YouTube and you can view them at this link.

There are some interesting presentations such as

  • Evaluation Study of MLE of Odisha” by Lata Pandey from NCERT,
  • “Grounding ELT in an MLE Framework” by Ajit Mohanty from JNU
  • “Importance of Mother Tongue Education for Quality Education” by Pamela Mackenzie from INfD
Enjoy watching them and others. From some of the speakers there are presentation available also.

Monday, June 17, 2013

[MLE] UNICEF Dictionaries in 9 languages in Jharkhand

Dear multilingual Education friends,

Earlier this month we read about the results of the Sociolinguistic Research that UNICEF facilitated in Jharkhand. Alongside this also dictionaries were developed in the following languages: Santhali, Mundari, Ho, PanchPargania, Nagpuri, Khortha, Kharia, Kurukh and Kurmali. The dictionaries were developed via Mother Tongue Based Active Language Learning (M-TALL) along with Tribal Welfare Research Institute. The Times of India Reports on it here. A quote:
Speaking on the occasion Mridula Sinha, principal secretary, Department of Social Welfare, Women & Child Development said: "I strongly believe that children's language skills need to be strengthened and it is our priority and for achieving this goal these dictionaries are launched which will be available at all anganwadi centres and schools to impart education to children. In this respect, we have named anganwadi centers Anganwadi Nursery School Kendra to promote basic learning and to control the drop out rates in the schools."

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

[MLE] Bihar: teachers are told to use local words in school

Dear Multilingual Education friends,

The Bihar government claims to be the first state to start a language bridge course. Beginning mid-July, teachers in  government primary schools in Bihar will teach class one students Hindi equivalents for words in Bajjika, Maithili, Bhojpuri, Angika and Magahi. To support the implementation dictionaries in these languages are produced also. A quote from the article in The Indian Express:
HRD Principal Secretary Amarjeet Sinha said, "As government schools have mostly students from villages, it's important to provide them a comfort level. They hardly speak Hindi. Teachers, with the aid of the dictionary, will help children pick up Hindi words. The dialect to Hindi dictionary will be primarily for teachers but can be referred to students as well. The idea is to minimise number of out-of-school children.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

UNICEF survey in Jharkhand reveals that 95% of school kids do not speak Hindi

Dear Multilingual Education friends,

At least five newspapers reported on the findings of a recent UNICEF sociolinguistic survey in Jharkhand. The study revealed quite interesting findings with regards to the gap between home language and school language. A few quotes:
The research was carried out in 72 blocks across the 24 districts of the state, covering 216 villages. During the survey, researchers interacted with schoolchildren, their parents, teachers and village leaders. Over 3,000 kids were profiled during the survey.

It was found that mother tongue of over 96 per cent of rural population, including school kids, was tribal or regional languages. While 33 per cent of the children interviewed spoke Santhali at home, 17.5 per cent spoke Khortha, 9.5 per cent Kurukh, 8.2 per cent Nagpuri, 7.6 per cent used Mundari, 6.7 per cent Sadri and 5.6 per cent used Ho. Only four per cent rural families spoke Hindi at home.

92 per cent of the teachers use Hindi to interact with students in schools. Over 90 per cent of the teachers indicated that they can speak tribal or regional language of that area. But since instruction in mother tongue is not mandatory they chose to instruct in Hindi.

Over 78% of the teachers felt that children faced problems in learning because of the language gap of home and school.

The study recommends that the medium of instruction in anganwadi pre-school centres and primary classes in schools should be in the mother-tongue of children, which is tribal or regional language.  The study suggests that material in tribal and regional language should be developed and used in classrooms to bridge gap between the home language and school language. Besides, teachers should be oriented to understand and respect local resources and culture, as well as to communicate with children in local language.