31 SES 12 A, Professional Development for Teachers in Multilingual Classrooms: International Perspectives
The need to enhance teachers’ practice for the teaching of school pupils from migrant families, who are learning curriculum content in the language of their host nation, is an urgent educational priority for European countries and more widely. This symposium brings together the work of researchers in the US, England and Finland to examine the impact of professional learning, framed within a socio-cultural approach to teaching and learning, on the thinking and practice of teachers working in culturally and linguistically diverse classrooms with multilingual learners (MLLs). It demonstrates how professional development underpinned by enduring principles of learning can transcend national differences in pedagogy and curriculum and equip teachers to respond positively to the needs of their MLLs.
The four papers address the following research questions:
1. How does framing professional development within a socio-cultural approach to teaching enhance MLLs’ teachers’ practice?
2. How does framing professional development within a socio-cultural approach to teaching change MLLs’ teachers’ mindsets?
In seeking answers to our questions, we draw on our work as teacher educators with pre-service and in-service teachers in multilingual classrooms, in each of our countries, and on our shared belief that the principles of effective practice for MLLs are embodied in the notion of ‘the linguistically responsive teacher’(Lucas, 2011; Lucas et al., 2008). We posit that professional development for teachers of MLLs needs to feature an array of pedagogies that together unite to promote intentionally dialogic practice (Alexander, 2004; Wells, 2006) that empowers students and teachers to occupy the same space (Freire, 1993). Using talk as a pedagogical and a learning tool, professional learning can facilitate teachers’ understanding of how their practice might celebrate linguistic diversity and promote academic success (Lucas et al. 2008).
The theoretical framework binding our papers is one of socio-cultural practice (Vygotsky, 1978) whereby the teacher acts the mediator for language development in the classroom. The theoretical lens of the linguistically responsive teacher is used to throw light on where practices and mindsets shift in response to various modes of professional learning. Methodologically our papers sit within a qualitative, interpretive paradigm using participatory approaches that engaged teachers in professional dialogue.
Paper one, a US perspective, examines the impact of pedagogical coaching on coach-teacher and teacher-student interactions when critical sociocultural perspectives are used as mirrored processes to frame learning. The second paper, giving an English perspective, reports the successes and challenges in adapting a US-based socio-cultural approach to professional learning in one English school of 98% MLLs, and the importance of locally tailoring to context is discussed. In paper three, we present US teachers’ perspectives of online professional learning for teaching MLLs, with a focus on agency, leadership, and collaboration. Paper four, a Finnish perspective, analyses the impact of professional learning directed towards developing both language awareness and a linguistically responsive mindset for teachers of MLLs.
Our symposium provides unique insights into how the tenets of effective practice and professional development for multilingual learners endure across nations, and evidence that the successes and challenges of effecting change are shared. As such, it presents forward-thinking findings that can inform a trans-European and global approach to reconciling the social inequalities that threaten the academic success of minoritised groups.
Alexander, R. (2004). Towards Dialogic Teaching. Cambridge: Diagolos. Freire, P. (1993). Pedagogy of the Oppressed. London: Penguin Random House UK Lucas, T. (Ed.). (2011). Teacher Preparation for Linguistically Diverse Classrooms: A Resource for Teacher Educators. Routledge. Lucas, T., Villegas, A. M., & Freedson-Gonzalez, M. (2008). Linguistically Responsive Teacher Education:Preparing Classroom Teachers to Teach English Language Learners. Journal of Teacher Education, 59(4), 361-373. Wells, G. (2006). Monologic and Dialogic Discourses as mediators of Education. Research in the Teaching of English, 41(2), 168-175. Vygotsky, L. (1978) Mind in society: the development of higher psychological processes. Cambridge, M.A.: Harvard University Press
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
The programme is updated regularly (each day in the morning)
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.