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Six things you might not know about Heritage Language Schools

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shaped through participation in community heritage language schools (HLS) in Canada. We used Bucholtz and Hall's (2005) sociocultural linguistic lens to interpret interview data with HLS leaders and community elders. Through this sociocultural linguistic lens identity forms through social interaction that can be described using five principles; accordingly, participants reported that children's identities were shaped through experiences in HLS which included accessing an expanding network of heritage language speakers, a wider heritage language environment, positive learning and presentation experiences, and the opportunity to learn about one's self through others. We conclude that HLS serve a greater purpose than language instruction; HLS provide children with spaces to connect with a multicultural identity, a language community, other speakers, and the self, all in service to a greater social good.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2016

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  • Language Issues is the part peer-reviewed journal of NATECLA, the national association for teaching English and other community languages to adults. The journal explores the area between academic research and classroom practice, sharing experiences of teaching, training and management and disseminating research and ideas relating to language, political and social issues. Language Issues comprises articles on published and unpublished research, current studies and pieces of action research relating to ESOL and community languages, language learning theories, methods, materials and learners. Voices from the Classroom brings reflections and experiences from teachers, students and others on topics ranging from bilingualism to testing to poetry in the language classroom. There are also interviews with professionals from the field, reviews and reports. Language Issues looks at broad issues and big ideas and is an invaluable resource for everyone interested in language teaching and learning, both in in the UK and elsewhere in the world. You can subscribe to the journal via the NATECLA website. Publisher: National Association for Teaching English and other Community Languages to Adults.
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