Editorial: Adopting a multilingual stance: Benefits and challenges for learners and teachers
This issue of TESOL in Context picks up on themes running through a number of the presentations as well as the keynotes from the Australian Council of TESOL Associations (ACTA) Conference that took place in Adelaide on 3-5 October, 2018.
One of these themes was the readiness of teachers, both pre- and in-service, to adopt a positive view of learners of English as an Additional Language (EAL) and make productive use of the understandings, knowledges and skills that they bring to the classroom, specifically those related to the learners’ language(s). All EAL learners, even those entering formal education at a very young age, come with proficiencies in (a) language(s) and/or dialect(s) other than Standard Australian English. In contrast to the expectation, as observed by Cummins et al. (2005), that learners leave their language(s) at the school door along with their social and cultural expertise, much current discussion and research around schools and other learning centres is actively considering ways to leverage these learner attributes for successful learning (e.g. Duarte, 2019).
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