Reference : Teachers’, parents’ and students’ perspectives’ on teaching and learning Greek in a c...
Scientific congresses, symposiums and conference proceedings : Unpublished conference
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Education & instruction
Multilingualism and Intercultural Studies
Teachers’, parents’ and students’ perspectives’ on teaching and learning Greek in a community school in Luxembourg
Kirsch, Claudine mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education (FLSHASE) > Education, Culture, Cognition and Society (ECCS) >]
22-08-2017 to 25-08-2017
University of Copenhagen
[en] Greek ; new migration ; community school
[en] Many scholars have been interested in studying patterns of language shift or maintenance of migrants during their diaspora. One way of sustaining the development of the home language is through attending a complementary school. This paper explores the differing perspectives on teaching and learning Greek in a complementary school in Luxembourg. The participants include the two teachers of this school, the mothers of three newly migrated families and their children. Like most children of newly migrated Greek families, the children in this study attend a state schools where they learn Luxembourgish, German and French (Gogonas & Kirsch 2016). They attend the Greek school one afternoon a week for three hours. The data stem from a survey with 37 parents and interviews with the teachers, parents and children. The findings of the survey indicate that the parents expect the school to develop high competences in Greek and knowledge of Greek culture and history. The newly arrived families have higher expectations than the established ones (Frygana 2016). The thematic analysis of the interviews indicates that the teachers adhered to a monolingual policy and reinforced a sense of “Greekness” by focusing on the Greek language and teaching some elements of culture (Tsagkogeorga 2016). They were aware that the multilingual children had different school experiences depending on their language competence and friendships. The children’s experiences varied in the light of their age and the teaching approaches. While the younger children saw little purpose in attending the school, the older child could make connections between the Greek school, the state school and her life and was motivated to learn Greek. The findings of this paper encourage teachers to reflect on their language policies and teaching approaches, and encourage them to capitalize on their students’ heterogeneity.

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