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Seminar on Mother Tongue Based- Multilingual Education
Proponents/Sponsor: Mrs. Mary Grace B. Polvoriza; Ms. Irene B. Bron; Ms. Jenifer B. Conel; Ms. Mary Joy B. Delatado; and Mr. Franknir Tandaan Date: Venue: Participants: Rationale: Language is, in fact, the foundation of every culture. Language is an abstract system of word meaning and symbols for all aspects of culture. It includes speech, written characters, numerals, symbols, and gestures and expressions of non-verbal communication. According to Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis, language does more than simply describe reality; it also serves to shape the reality of the culture. September 28, 2012; 7:00AM – 10:00AM Rm. 4 Gabaldon Bldg. BSE – 4D
Objectives: 1. To expose students in conducting a seminar; 2. To explain the important insights and reasons of multi-lingual education in making education more responsive to cultural diversity; 3. To appreciate the value of using his/her own mother tongue in dealing with any classroom situations; and 4. To stimulate different classroom situation using their own mother tongue. Methodology: This seminar on Mother Tongue Based-Multilingual Education will be spearheaded by Irene B. Bron, Jenifer B. Conel, Mary Joy B. Delatado and Franknir B. Tandaan of BSE-4D of the College of Development Education. It will be a three-hour seminar which will be attended by all BSE-4D students, this semester, SY 20122013 at the Gabaldon Bldg., Rm. 4. A registration fee of Php. 35.00 will be collected to cover all the expenses relative to the seminar. The seminar will start at 7 o’clock in the morning and expected to end at 10 o’clock AM. Different committees were assigned to by the seminar coordinators to help in the conduct of the seminar. Four resource speakers from the class will be requested to discuss topics relative to the seminar title. An evaluation sheet will be given to the participants after all the topics have been discussed. Financial report will form part of the documentation.
Budgetary Allocation: Registration Fee: Expected no. of participants: Snacks: (Php.10.00/participant) Paper and Printing Hall Preparation Token Miscellaneous Expenses: Total Progress towards Mother Tongue Based Multilingual Education Progress has been made towards MT-based MLE in some multilingual settings, often in countries with very limited resources. One example is Eritrea, which brought in a mother tongue based multilingual education system after conflict with Ethiopia in 1993, making Php. 35.00 22 Php.220.00 110.00 120.00 200.00 85.00 Php. 735.00 significant changes to teacher training schemes to enable people from a range of ethnolinguistic groups to become mother tongue teachers (Webley, 2000). Other examples, such as Bolivia’s intercultural education approach and Papua New Guinea’s mother tongue multilingual education system, covering 380 language groups, have been well documented (Webley et al, 2007).
known as the L1. students can communicate through writing as soon as they understand the rules of the orthographic (or other written) system of their language. 1 The second or foreign language.4. while bilingual programs allow for systematic teaching of the L2. from Save the Children’s experience and from the work of several other organisations 2 indicates that for MT-based MLE to be implemented effectively across an education system.pdf The importance of mother tongue-based schooling for educational quality Commissioned study for EFA Global Monitoring Report 2005 Carol Benson. whereby the knowledge of language. language is clearly the key to communication and understanding in the classroom. they can begin reading and writing in the L2. making concept learning inefficient and even impeding language learning. efficiently transferring the literacy skills they have acquired in the familiar language. but what they have in common is their use of the mother tongue at least in the early . ♦ Transfer of linguistic and cognitive skills is facilitated in bilingual programs. Instruction through a language that learners do not speak has been called “submersion” (SkutnabbKangas 2000) because it is analogous to holding learners under water without teaching them how to swim. Unlike submersion teaching. These can be characterised as follows: • Language (and the need for learning in mother tongue) is at the centre of education policy • Clear guidance indicates local language is valued in schools • Learner-centred teaching approaches are promoted • Flexible modes of entry to teacher training are available for minority language speakers • Early education in mother tongue promotes language development and preliteracy skills • There is support for participatory production of writing systems and literacy materials in local languages. Centre for Research on Bilingualism Stockholm University 14 April 2004 Part A: Overview While there are many factors involved in delivering quality basic education. ♦ Explicit teaching of the L2 beginning with oral skills allows students to learn the new language through communication rather than memorization. Mother tongue-based bilingual programs use the learner’s first language.org/_ld2008/doucments/Prese ntation_document/Helen_Pinnock_mle_how_do_w e_move_ahead. creating participatory learning environments that are conducive to cognitive as well as linguistic development. but the process is highly inefficient as well as being unnecessarily difficult. literacy and concepts learned in the L1 can be accessed and used in the second language once oral L2 skills are developed. should be taught systematically so that learners can gradually transfer skills from the familiar language to the unfamiliar one. In submersion schooling teachers are often forced to translate or codeswitch3 to convey meaning. and are common communication strategies in bi. and no re-learning is required.seameo. 3 Code-switching and code-mixing involve alternation between languages. 1999) interdependence theory and the concept of common underlying proficiency. the learning of new concepts is not postponed until children become competent in the L2. Code alternation functions best when all parties are competent speakers of the languages involved. Learning to read is most efficient when students know the language and can employ psycholinguistic guessing strategies. which is often characterised by lecture and rote response. but in submersion classrooms it is more of a coping strategy for dealing with a foreign instructional medium and does not necessarily contribute to second language learning. 2 Bilingual models and practices vary as do their results. The pedagogical principles behind this positive transfer of skills are Cummins’ (1991. CAL 2001): 2♦ Use of a familiar language to teach beginning literacy facilitates an understanding of soundsymbol or meaning-symbol correspondence. poorly designed.” ♦ Since content area instruction is provided in the L1. but it can take years before they discover meaning in what they are “reading. Compounded by chronic difficulties such as low levels of teacher education. yet continue to allow a single foreign language to dominate the education sector. it is possible for children schooled only in the L2 to transfer their knowledge and skills to the L1. schools are encouraged to engage with parents and communities • Teachers are encouraged to be aware of and promote language acquisition • Moves to assess national examinations in local languages are under way years so that students can acquire and develop literacy skills in addition to understanding and participating in the classroom. to teach beginning reading and writing skills along with academic content.D. 4 As specialists Lanauze & Snow explain. at least if developed beyond a http://www. submersion makes both learning and teaching extremely difficult. likewise. Ph. submersion programs may succeed in teaching students to decode words in the L2. Once students have basic literacy skills in the L1 and communicative skills in the L2. particularly when the language of instruction is also foreign to the teacher. Bilingual as opposed to monolingual schooling offers significant pedagogical advantages which have been reported consistently in the academic literature (see reviews in Baker 2001. Consistent with these principles. known as the L2. inappropriate curricula and lack of adequate school facilities. In contrast. Many developing countries are characterized by individual as well as societal multilingualism. a range of supports should be put in place. bilingual instruction allows teachers and students to interact naturally and negotiate meanings together. Cummins 2000.Looking at learning from these instances.and multilingual contexts. transfer means that “language skills acquired in a first language can.
has observed. As one educator. What kind of learners does MLE intend to produce? MLE aims to produce learners who are: • Multi-literate—they can read and write competently in the local language. It starts from where the learners are. involving confidence. Apart from programming the use of several languages.” 6. the national language. what remains to be taught and which students need further assistance. making it difficult for teachers to determine whether students have difficulty understanding the concept itself. Professor Josefina Cortes. 3. and one or more languages of wider communication. failure and dropout. 2. L1m classrooms allow children to be themselves and develop their personalities as well as their intellects. MLE encourages active participation by children in the learning process because they understand what is being discussed and what is being asked of them. and national http://unesdoc. methodology. 5. children are gradually introduced to the official languages. health and social studies in the L1.pdf 1. • Multi-lingual—they can use these languages in various situations. we have become “a nation of fifth graders. be recruited at relatively early stages of L2 acquisition for relatively skilled performance in L2.unesco.e. which may actually limit learner competence in both. is strengthened by use of the L1. (c) the production of good teaching materials (i. Success in school depends on the academic and intellectualized language needed to discuss more abstract concepts. This means learning to read and write in their first language or L1. Why still learn it in school? What we and our children know is the conversational language or the everyday variety used for daily interaction. read and write in more than one language. 4. • Multi-cultural—they can live and work harmoniously with people of culture backgrounds that are different from their own. then in the written form. articulate their thoughts and add new concepts to what they already know. political unity. Bilingual programs encourage learners to understand. ♦ The affective domain. such as English.certain point in L1. Why use the national language or Filipino in school? The Philippines is a multilingual and multicultural nation with more than 150 languages. What is multilingual mother tongue-based education or MLE? MLE is the use of more than two languages for literacy and instruction. thus shortcutting the normal developmental progression in L2” (1989: 337). (b) the training of good teachers in the required languages for content and . it also involves the following: (a) the development of good curricula (i. When will children start learning Filipino and English? As they develop a strong foundation in their L1. and from what they already know. science. When students can express themselves. or the language of the test. MLE will not work when one simply changes the language by translating existing materials into the local languages. 8. teachers can diagnose what has been learned. as there is no fear of making mistakes. errorfree and culturally relevant). What specific weaknesses in the Philippine educational system does MLE seek to address? MLE seeks to specifically address the high functional illiteracy of Filipinos where language plays a significant factor. But our children already know their language. They can immediately use the L1 to construct and explain their world. ♦ Students become bilingual and biliterate. speak. In contrast. as separate subjects. self-esteem and identity.org/images/0014/001466/1 46632e. submersion programs attempt to promote skills in a new language by eliminating them from a known language. Filipino and English. 3♦ Student learning can be accurately assessed in bilingual classrooms. leading to frustration and ultimately repetition. first orally. A national language is a powerful resource for inter-ethnic dialogue. Does MLE only involve changing the language of instruction and translating the materials into the local languages? MLE is an innovative approach to learning. unlike submersion classrooms where they are forced to sit silently or repeat mechanically. 7. In submersion schooling cognitive learning and language learning are confounded. Why use the mother tongue or the first language (L1) in school? One’s own language enables a child to express him/herself easily. (d) the empowerment of the community (i. increasing motivation and initiative as well as creativity. the language of instruction.e. cognitively demanding).. and also teaching subjects like mathematics.e. school-based management).
and then later in an L2. that students will not learn science and mathematics if they do not know English. Don’t we need more English since the language will provide more jobs for our countrymen. Large scale research during the last 30 years has provided compelling evidence that the critical variable in L2 development in children is not the amount of exposure. outperform those taught to read exclusively in an L2. Are local languages capable of being used as languages of instruction? Definitely yes.identity. however.” However. The consolidated Gullas. for example. 17. It is not true. during the American colonial period. and dissension. 11. Many studies indicate that students first taught to read in their L1. Beginning 1957. . knowledge of English is certainly useful. Simply increasing the time for English will not work. but the timing and the manner of exposure. But this is nothing compared to the overwhelming bias of the present system for English. On the contrary. the local languages. Learning to read in one’s own language provides learners with a solid foundation for learning to read in any L2. the Declaration of Policy section betrays the Bill’s real intention and this is to strengthen English “as the medium of instruction in all levels of education. or vernaculars. 13. the best way is to teach it as an L2 and to teach it well. especially in Africa. As a language is used for instruction. This popular belief is increasingly being proven untrue. social. the availability of adequate models of the language in the learner’s social environment. This depends on the proficiency of teachers. This vernacular education policy was abruptly abolished in 1974. The ideas of science are not bound by one language and one culture. it intrinsically evolves to adapt to the demands of its users. Will the use of Filipino as medium of instruction and as a subject be advantageous to native Tagalog speakers? It is partially true that native speakers of Tagalog enjoy a small advantage under the present bilingual education set-up in which some subjects are taught in their L1. Will increasing the time for English or making it the exclusive medium of instruction improve our English? No. Why not use an early exit program where the L1 is used from pre-school up to Grade 3 and English is used as the exclusive medium of instruction thereafter? Early-exit programs can help but may not be enough. it is the suppression of local languages that may lead to violent conflicts. The graduates of this system should find relevance beyond their ethnic and national boundaries. when the bilingual education policy was launched by the Marcos government. 10. became the medium of instruction in Grades 1 and 2. reveals that children need at least 12 years to learn their L1. Why use an international language like English in school? Languages of wider communication like English should be part of the multilingual curriculum of a country. What is the best way to attain proficiency in English? For non-native speakers of English. the Monroe Commission already recommended the use of the local languages in education. Will the use of the local and regional languages be detrimental to building one nation? No. 16. 9. The international experience on the use of L1 and L2 in education. Villafuerte and Del Mar Bill (or the “English-only” MOI Bill) pending in Congress appears to support the use of the local languages and also the national language in education. political. Languages grow and change in response to changes in the physical. Most world knowledge is accessible in English. disunity. Will using the mother tongue as language of instruction hinder the learning of a second language like English? No. from the preschool to the tertiary level. Filipino or the regional/native language may be used as the MOI in all subjects from preschool until Grade III. 12. and sufficient reading materials. as it provides that “English.” The optional use of L1 and the national language as MOI really means that they may not be used at all. and so. As far back as 1925. such as in the call center industry? 14. 15. spiritual and economic environments in which they are used. It takes six to eight years of strong L2 teaching before this can be successfully used as a medium of instruction. it won’t.
and other existing programs using the local languages tell us that it is already possible to undertake an MLE program without waiting for legislation. is cost-effective. not on Science and Math and literacy (that is more fundamental to learning). What do Philippine stakeholders say about MLE? • The Department of Education. and reasoning skills is through the L1. According to former Education Undersecretary Miguel Luz. The Lubuagan experience. through NEDA Director General Ralph Recto: “From the economic and financial vantage points. through Secretary Alberto Romulo: “Multilingualism is the order of things in the UN and in the world. Do we have to wait for legislation to implement MLE? No. What is a better alternative to the English-only Bill? A better alternative is House Bill No.” The best way to learn basic science and math. to think logically.” • The National Economic Development Authority. the young learners and their teachers will concentrate on the language. however. as well as other added costs.com/2009/01/mleprimer. The more important concern is how to solve the current mismatch between industry and the educational system. Luz adds: “It (the Gullas Bill) is a dangerous bill. problem solving skills. in the final analysis. studies show that L2-based education systems are more costly than L1 systems. and failures. the DepEd Lingua Franca Project. repeaters. UNESCO supports mother tongue instruction as a means of improving educational quality by building upon the knowledge and experience of the learners and teachers. 19. The Bill is also known as the Multilingual Education and Literacy Bill. 3719.Many believe that this is an extremely shortsighted view because not all Filipinos will become call center agents. As such. or the Gunigundo Bill. because it places a misleading emphasis on English as the medium of learning.. http://mothertonguebased.html . and to solve problems.blogspot. the consensus among employers is that a high school diploma with its current coverage is inadequate for its purposes because Filipino high school graduates are weak in their ability to communicate. filed by Congressman Magtanggol Gunigundo II of Valenzuela. The unique richness of the world’s national identities draws on the many traditions that make up different countries and are expressed through local and indigenous languages.” 21. 18. one of the largest associations of businessmen in the country: “English and Filipino are languages `foreign’ to most children and legislating either as medium of instruction will do more harm to an already ailing system of education. L1-based education may actually cost less than a system that is based on L2. • The Philippine Business for Education (PBED). If we consider the money wasted on dropouts. Is it costly to practice MLE? Contrary to popular belief. through Secretary Jesli Lapus: “We find the bill (the Gunigundo bill) to be consistent with the Basic Education Sector Reform Agenda (BESRA) recommendations and the bridging model proposed by the Bureau of Elementary Education where pupils were found to comprehend better the lessons in class.. which is far superior to the Englishonly Bill in many respects. 20.” • The Department of Foreign Affairs and UNESCO Philippines. we believe that adopting this education policy (HB 3719).