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Investigating the role of the L1 in the primary MFL classroom

Investigating the role of the L1 in the primary MFL classroom
Investigating the role of the L1 in the primary MFL classroom
MFL teaching practice in English schools often presents spoken word forms first (Jones & Coffey, 2006: 46, 50), literacy remains underdeveloped in primary and secondary school Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) programmes (Cable et al., 2010; Ofsted, 2011) and there can be a “tacit assumption” that MFL literacy will develop without explicit instruction (Woore, 2007: 175-176). Instead, this paper proposes that MFL literacy requires systematic attention, elevating the written word to the same status as the spoken form. A principled pedagogy was developed which gave the written word equal status to its spoken counterpart and acknowledged a potential role for L1 literacy skills, even in beginner L2 learners (Koda, 2008).

This paper presents findings from a 10 month action research study exploring the teaching and learning of MFL literacy in two English primary schools with 45 beginner learners of French aged 9-11. Whilst existing pedagogical advice often tends to favour the acquisition of oral forms first (Jones & Coffey, 2006: 46, 50), this teaching intervention proposed that print and sound can be developed simultaneously with beginner learners and adopted an integrated, systematic approach to L2 literacy. Learner attainment was tracked through a mix of weekly classroom-based observations and formal tests. Findings support the idea that L1 literacy is an ongoing influence in L2 literacy development playing both a facilitative and competitive role which should be harnessed and challenged rather than feared
Porter, Alison
978474c5-8b0b-4dc6-8463-3fd68162d0cd
Porter, Alison
978474c5-8b0b-4dc6-8463-3fd68162d0cd

Porter, Alison (2015) Investigating the role of the L1 in the primary MFL classroom. BAAL 11th Teaching and Learning SIG, United Kingdom. 02 - 03 Jul 2015.

Record type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)

Abstract

MFL teaching practice in English schools often presents spoken word forms first (Jones & Coffey, 2006: 46, 50), literacy remains underdeveloped in primary and secondary school Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) programmes (Cable et al., 2010; Ofsted, 2011) and there can be a “tacit assumption” that MFL literacy will develop without explicit instruction (Woore, 2007: 175-176). Instead, this paper proposes that MFL literacy requires systematic attention, elevating the written word to the same status as the spoken form. A principled pedagogy was developed which gave the written word equal status to its spoken counterpart and acknowledged a potential role for L1 literacy skills, even in beginner L2 learners (Koda, 2008).

This paper presents findings from a 10 month action research study exploring the teaching and learning of MFL literacy in two English primary schools with 45 beginner learners of French aged 9-11. Whilst existing pedagogical advice often tends to favour the acquisition of oral forms first (Jones & Coffey, 2006: 46, 50), this teaching intervention proposed that print and sound can be developed simultaneously with beginner learners and adopted an integrated, systematic approach to L2 literacy. Learner attainment was tracked through a mix of weekly classroom-based observations and formal tests. Findings support the idea that L1 literacy is an ongoing influence in L2 literacy development playing both a facilitative and competitive role which should be harnessed and challenged rather than feared

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More information

Published date: 2 July 2015
Venue - Dates: BAAL 11th Teaching and Learning SIG, United Kingdom, 2015-07-02 - 2015-07-03
Organisations: Modern Languages

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 381619
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/381619
PURE UUID: 165d4f0b-3b8a-4dde-8d05-08fbf91f0b5f
ORCID for Alison Porter: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-8462-1909

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 08 Oct 2015 13:05
Last modified: 06 Jun 2018 12:30

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