One of the main points of relevance of the MATT project is the composition of the class...or to complicate matters making it more vague, of the group of learners. Its importance is the teaching of the native language in a classroom that is evermore multicultural and multilingual and multi level of knowledge and confidence in the use of the Native Language. It is also about seeing the native language class being a possible avenue for social integration for a number of reasons:
- foreign students may integrate better once they understand and can communicate in the language of the host or receiving community,
- foreign and local students can foster mutual understanding and appreciation while learning a language together especially if language learning is a vehicle for working together, entering into discussion on subjects of interest for all and
- foreign students can understand the context in which they are living because language is a good vehicle for the conveyance of the local culture, traditions, mindset etc.
I am sure I am missing a lot here. I am not an education professional so I am just starting a conversation.
I can identify some profiles of students in our classroom even if they all, I assume, belong to three broad groups:
- local learners ie. native to the local community since generations with confident use of the native language,
- local foreigners (this is a term I invented therefore not a technical term) learners who are not native to the local community but who have been in the community for some time with some sound knowledge of the native language but probably coming from bilingual families and
- recent immigrants into the community with low level of knowledge and confidence in the use of the native language for communication.
It would great to have comments from you on this especially if it helps us identify large and more micro groups. Of course we may be aware that we may not be able to or need to identify all micro groups.
This may be more necessary for the training in Trondheim but we will also have a discussion on this in Antalya.
Please note we are not speaking of profiles in terms of economic means, social status etc. but strictly about local/migration situation for manageability of the discussion. We are also not bringing into the discussion whether learners are in class, learning from home via distance learning or in a blended learning environment...yet.
Thank you for your time.