? Mother Tongue Beyond Grade 3 Firth McEachern, 1st International Research Conference on K-12 Education, Legazpi City, The Philippines, Aug 20-22, 2013
Outline • Recent History of MOI policy • Literature and Research about MOI beyond Grade 3 • Constraints in the Philippines for MT beyond Grade 3 • Opportunities for MT beyond Grade 3 • Conclusion
In 4282 BC, Pharaoh Xirxeflopis wrote the following about MOI in upper grades:
DepEd Order 74, s. 2009 “Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education, hereinafter referred to as MLE, is the effective use of more than two languages for literacy and instruction. Henceforth, itshall be institutionalized as a fundamental educational policy and program in this Department in the whole stretch of formal educationincluding pre-school and in the Alternative Learning System.” ?
Policy before D.O. 74… “Right now, the mother tongue or the lingua franca (the common language used by a region) is used (at least in theory, although in practice things are quite different!) as the sole language of instruction during the first three grades of elementary school.” – Dr.Isagani R. Cruz (The Philippine Star, July 23, 2009) Former Undersecretary of Education ?
Mayroon pa lang MLE policies noon… Dr. Cruz was referring to a number of policy moves towards Mother Tongue (MT) education over the last decade: • 1999 DECS Order No. 80 specified that the MOI in all learning areas in Grade I will be taught in the lingua franca • 2001 Number of mother tongues to be used in the first three grades of the Lingua Franca Education Project increased to 10. More schools identified as pilot schools. • 2007DepEd ordered all public schools (not just pilot or selected schools) to use the mother tongue for the first three grades. ?
So what’s different about D.O. 74? “The Order extends the use of the mother tongue beyond the first three years of elementary school…This means that the mother tongue will now be used not just for the first three grades, but all the way to the last year of secondary school, its use progressing one level per year.” – Dr.Isagani Cruz (The Philippine Star, July 23, 2009) ?
So what’s different about D.O. 74? “At one level per year beginning with preschool starting June 2010, the use of the mother tongue as primary language of instruction will be fully implemented across the basic education curriculum by 2021. Colleges and universities will start accepting high school graduates that were taught primarily in their mother tongue by 2021 or 2023.” – Dr.Isagani Cruz (The Philippine Star, July 23, 2009) ?
Mother Tongue until graduation?!? Really? Well, not exactly. More recent policy issuances have delimited the role of MT….
DepEd Order 31, s. 2012 Implementing Guidelines of Grades 1-10 of the new Enhanced Curriculum Enclosure 1, section D: Medium of Instruction “Mother Tongue (MT) shall be used as the medium of instruction and as a subject from Grade 1-3. English or Filipino is used from Grade 4 to 10.” ?
DepEd Order 31, s. 2012: Guidelines for K-12 No MT beyond Grade 3 ?
How long is enough?Research and Recommendations on Extent of Mother Tongue (MT) in Education Part 2
Report: Closer to Home: how to help schools in low- and medium-income countries respond to children’s language needs (2011) “There are well documented teaching approaches which give children good access to national, regional and international languages, without damaging their education or their linguistic rights and heritage (World Bank, 1995; Patrinos and Velez, 1996).” ?
Report: Closer to Home: how to help schools in low- and medium-income countries respond to children’s language needs (2011) “Robust evidence from several countries shows that children who do not use mainstream languages at home need to learn in their own language for at least six years,at the same time as being introduced to new languages that they will need later in life (Alidou et al, 2006)” ?
Report: Language and Education: The Missing Link (2009) “Children should learn second languagein gradually increasing amounts from the beginning of school until at least grade 6, before they can cope with the curriculum being delivered in that language.” ?
Report: EGRA: Applications and Interventions to Improve Basic Literacy (2011) “Although children may develop functional language for social situations within a year, achieving academic literacy has been estimated to take 5 or more years for second-language learners.” “Transitioning to full use of 2nd-language instruction before students have sufficient capacity in that language can block them from learning basic concepts that are key to comprehension.” ?
Report: Promoting Literacy in Multilingual Settings (2006) “International research shows that at least some five years of instruction in the first language – but preferably throughout the education system – is required to provide a solid foundation for further studies (e.g. Baker, 2006; Baker & Hornberger, 2001; Benson, 2004, 2005; Cummins, 2000, 2001; Thomas & Collier, 2002).” ?
Report: Enhancing Learning of Children from Diverse Language Backgrounds (2011) “Maintaining first language abilities and enhancing them through the development of literacy and academic language skills in L1 actually leads to better academic outcomes in L1 (Palmer, Chackelford, Miller & Leclere, 2007), easier literacy learning (International Reading Association, 2001), and better outcomes in second language education (see e.g., Lindholm-Leary & Borsato, 2006).” ?
Report: Enhancing Learning of Children from Diverse Language Backgrounds (2011) “Research and theory support the gradual introduction of L2, first through formal instruction in L2 as a subject of study, and subsequently, through the use of L2 in a gradually increasing number of academic subjects in the curriculum. However, this second step should not be taken too soon.” ?
Report: Enhancing Learning of Children from Diverse Language Backgrounds (2011) “Requiring minority language children to transition too soon to education in a new language (e.g., a majority language) can be detrimental to their learning processes and their academic achievement (e.g., Porter, 1990; Rossell & Baker, 1996).” ?
Report: Enhancing Learning of Children from Diverse Language Backgrounds (2011) “Unfortunately, research support for additive forms of bilingual education has too often been misconstrued, unwittingly or deliberately, as support for ‘short cut’ transition programmes that require children to tackle the academic curriculum in the new language before they have developed academic proficiency in their first language (Benson, 2002, 2009; Thomas & Collier, 2002)” ?
Report: Enhancing Learning of Children from Diverse Language Backgrounds (2011) “ ‘Short cut’ transition programs tend to result in subtractive bilingualism. UNESCO works to raise awareness of the need to support children in becoming fully literate and highly proficient in their first language to create a foundation for the acquisition of additional language(s).” “Creating a strong linguistic foundation typically requires at least six years of formal schooling in L1 as the medium of instruction.” ?
Report: Enhancing Learning of Children from Diverse Language Backgrounds (2011) “In summary, where data are available, findings consistently show that children who have the opportunity to receive their formal education in L1 for at least six years have higher levels of achievement than those who must transition too soon to a medium they lack the metacognitive skills to understand and use effectively in academic work (UNESCO, 2000; Mothibeli, 2005).” ?
Report: Enhancing Learning of Children from Diverse Language Backgrounds (2011) “Yet, internationally, the trend is towards early-exit from mother tongue-based bi/multilingual education and a ‘fast track’ transition to English or another dominant language.” ?
Report: Optimising Learning, Education and Publishing in Africa: The Language Factor (2011) “The first language needs to be reinforced and developed for 12 years in order for successful second language learning and academic success to take place, i.e. from birth to 12 years (first language as medium of instruction forat least six years of formal schooling).” ?
Report: Optimising Learning, Education and Publishing in Africa: The Language Factor (2011) “The international Second Language Acquisition literature indicates that under optimal conditions it takes six to eight years to learn a second language in school sufficiently well enough to use it as a medium of instruction.” ?
Report: Optimising Learning, Education and Publishing in Africa: The Language Factor (2011) “Language education models which remove the first language as a primary medium of instruction before year/grade five will facilitate little success for the majority of learners.” ?
Report: OptimisingLearning…(cont) “If one examines early-exit models and the findings of large-scale studies…(Ramirez et al., 1991; Thomas and Collier, 1997, 2002; Halaoui, 2003;Sampa, 2003)…one finds that for the first three to four years students appear to be progressing well.” “However, by mid-way through year four (sometimes sooner), these students in the submersion or early-exit to second language programmes start to fall behind” ?
MOI Case StudiesWhat they reveal about length of MT instruction Part 3
Thomas and Collier Study • Landmark longitudinal study on different language-in-education models • Examined the records of 700,000 language minority students, speaking dozens of home languages, in five school systems across the U.S. between 1985 and 2001 • Achievement levels in English reading were tracked from school entry through 11th grade. • Result: the strongest predictor of learner success at upper secondary levels in the dominant language (English) education system was the number of early years of instruction the learners had received in their mother tongue. ?
(from Thomas & Collier, 1997:53) Additive Additive Late-exit Early-exit • Subtractive • (No MT) English reading achievement levels of students over time, for different language-in-education models English reading achievement levels of students over time, for different education models
Case Study: Niger A study conducted by the Ministry of Basic Education and GTZ compared experimental bilingual classrooms with traditional French-only classrooms. It was found that the MOI affects classroom interaction. Bergmann et al. (2002) reported that interactive teaching style is more prevalent in experimental bilingual schools where both teachers and students are able to use the mother tongue. The experimental teachers, using the L1, do not do most of the talking. They let the pupils express themselves very often in the elementary classes. ?
Case Study: Niger By contrast, the use of unfamiliar languages forces teachers to use traditional and teacher-centred teaching methods. Chorus teaching, repetition, memorisation, recall, code-switching and safe talk are common patterns of L2 classrooms. Thus, the use of mother tongues as languages of instruction facilitates the implementation of child-centred pedagogy. ?
Dramatic effect language has on teaching style illustrated by the study: when French was introduced as the main language of instruction in the third year (CE1), bilingual teachers (EE) unfortunately went back to the use of teacher-centered pedagogy, just like the traditional French-only teachers (ET). Teachers’ ability to engage Teachers allowed to use MT in first two grades (CI & CP) Teachers never allowed ?
In 2001, it was suggested that Niger move from a transitional bilingual model to more appropriate model that maintains the use of national languages as languages of instruction throughout primary school. ?
Case Study: Ethiopia • Introduced mother-tongue education for the eight years of primary school in Ethiopia in 1994, with transition to English in secondary school. • Despite being one of the poorest countries in the world, Ethiopia was able to develop 22 Ethiopian languages in addition to Amharic as languages of learning. • Accomplished through a system of decentralising educational administration to the regions and the emergence of enthusiastic and skilled language development teams and local publishers. ?
Case Study: Ethiopia ? Retrieved from http://wikitravel.org/en/Ethiopia on 19 August 2013.
Case Study: Ethiopia • Conditions across the country are complicated (civil conflict, military conflict along three national borders, the impact of climate change, and so on) implementation has differed from one region to the next • In practice, some regions continue MT until Grade 8, others until Grade 6, and others until Grade 4. • Systemic assessments in 2000, 2004 and 2008 show that students with eight years of mother-tongue medium education achieve better than students with six or four years of mother-tongue education (cf. Mekonnen, 2005; Heughet al., 2010; Benson et al., 2010). ?
Case Study: Mali • Schools using ‘convergent pedagogy’ were first introduced in Mali in 1987 (Canvin 2007:169). In this program, the mother tongue of the learner is used throughout primary school, and French is systematically introduced. ?
Case Study: Mali • In PédagogieConvergenteSchools, written French is not introduced until the child is literate in their mother tongue. • In 1993, in the Ségou Region of Mali, the 1st generation of Pédagogieconvergentestudents finished the basic six years of elementary school. 77% passed the national entry exam to 7th Grade compared with the national avg of 66% (Traoré, 2001, p. 23). • Pédagogieconvergentewas extended beyond the pilot schools beginning in 1994 and, by 2005, it was being used in 2,050 public schools nationwide and in 11 of the 13 national languages ?
Case Study: Mali • Another innovation introduced in Mali is the inclusion oftests in national languagesalong with other tests administered in French. • This innovation establishes the importance of mother tongue instruction for both teachers and students in Mali. • This change can help reduce teachers’ and students’ fears of lagging behind monolingual school pupils who are taught exclusively in French from the first year onward (Traoré, 2001). ?