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The Case for MTBMLE

Reading Essentials: Cognitive Science and the Gift of Fluency for All

Helen Abadzi, a senior education specialist at the World Bank and the Global Partnership for Education (c/o World Bank; 1987-2013), prepared a set of e-courses for the training donor and government staff.  
The Reading Essentials course is now available for free.  To make access rapid and open, it has been uploaded to Udemy website. Click here to access the e-course.  

Multilingual Education for Social Justice – From Coercive to Collaborative Relations of Power

We are pleased to share Professor Jim Cummins' special presentation videos prepared for the 4th International Conference on Language and Education held in November 2013. 

Estimating the Impact of Language of Instruction in S African Primary Schools: A Fixed Effects Approach

The country of South Africa faces a difficult policy decision ahead as they seek to provide their citizens with adequate skills in both English and Afrikaans, the only two of the nation's eleven official languages that are currently used in academic contexts and literature, while continuing to provide mother tongue education. 

Why Language Matters for the Millennium Development Goals

This 45 page booklet was written by Sandy Barron for the Multilingual Education Working Group (MLE WG) based at the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Bangkok.

Presentations on MTB-MLE and Transition from Dr. Agatha van Ginkel

Dr. Agatha van Ginkel, an Education and Language Consultant with SIL Africa Area gave two presentations related to MTB-MLE issues at the recent 
All Children Reading, Africa 2012 workshops earlier this year. These workshops, hosted by the Global Partnership for Education and attended by various education experts and leaders, were designed with the purpose of finding innovative ways to improve early grade reading and boost children's literacy in developing countries. 

Dr. van Ginkel's presentations discuss both the importance and value of mother tongue instruction as well as provide guidance for teachers on deciding when and how students should be transitioned from their mother tongue to L2. 

Girls, Educational Equity and Mother Tongue Based Teaching

This publication argues that language, specifically the language used in schools, is one of the principal mechanisms through which inequality in education is reproduced. It shows how the learner‘s mother tongue holds the key to making schooling more inclusive for all disadvantaged groups, especially for girls and women.


Efficient Learning for the Poor: Insights from the Frontier of Cognitive Neuroscience

Many countries have multiple languages and a need to teach in a common language. In countries like Romania or Indonesia, children speaking minority languages must learn the official language of instruction. In many others—including most countries in Africa and the South Pacific—the lingua franca is foreign to everyone (for example, English, French, or Portuguese). The countries with multiple languages have various language instruction policies. In some countries, students may study in their mother tongues in lower primary grades and then switch to the lingua franca. In others, logistical and political complexities result in the use of the lingua franca for all grades. The latter approach is preferred in much of Africa and impacts some of the world‘s poorest countries.

Bilingual Education in Africa: An Exploration of Encouraging Connections Between Language and Girl's Schooling

Mother tongue or bilingual programmes come in various forms. The general idea is to provide at least beginning instruction and initial literacy in a language spoken by the student, i.e. the mother tongue – known as the first language or L1 – or a reasonably close second language. Few programmes deny the necessity for children to learn the official language in addition; however, this language – often known as an L2 – should ideally be taught as the second or foreign language that it is, beginning with oral skills and later developing L2 literacy on the basis of transference of skills learned first in the mother tongue.

Multilingual Education Projects in India

This document provides an overview of all multilingual education programs in India. It provides a snapshot of the wide variety of programs run by government and private institutions.

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