June 19, 2024


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Do you have to speak English for a long time to teach it well?

While the assessment reports on the performance of French students in foreign languages ​​have traditionally been disappointing, the latest release Ministry of Education Achievements at the end of school and college give one hope: Between 2004 and 2016, the level of English generally improved in both oral and written.

Should this be seen as a result of recent developments in the school system? For about fifteen years, in fact, learning foreign languages ​​and cultures (LCE) has been part of elementary school programs. But, unbeknownst to all school teachers, this solution is sometimes of great concern.

In primary school, the teaching profession is characterized by its diversity. Not all of them deepened the study of a foreign language during their training, so it did not feel fair to share it. Some even deeply believe that they are not good at it. This feelingLinguistic insecurity It is widely shared among elementary school teachers, regardless of their seniority in the profession.

How do you teach a foreign language and culture that you only practice imperfectly? Why ask non-experts to be role models when it comes to learning a language? Faced with these questions, some teachers are tempted to involve their own speakers in their classes.That is, the language in which the mother tongue is taught. Is this the right solution?

Understanding students ’difficulties

Madame DuPont, CE1 Teacher Take twenty-seven years. Teaching her a foreign language was not offered to her. English sessions do not guarantee her credibility, she needs tough preparation: she knows she doesn’t have to “Good pronunciation” To be a “Good model” A “Good training” Oral English.

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He wants to give his students a model and a real pronunciation of English because he wants them to excel in languages. In this, it connects with contemporary French social thought Native speaker A linguistic ideal is for the sake of reproduction or order “Good speech” Where “Write well”, As if it were becoming bilingual.

Often considered a better modelThe native speaker (originally also called language 1 or L1) is defined as the native speaker relative to other languages. His biography regardless of his practice. Indigenousness, however, cannot guarantee being a speaker “OK” Where “The best” Teaching Language 1 as Language 2, even for young students.

Without trying to truly distance himself from his practice, his linguistic defense can become very relative in a teaching situation and escape into a universe where he has no reference point. The non-native teacher not only gets to know his students, but also has the benefit of sharing with them the learner’s difficulties in switching from one language to another. He can provide comparisons between the observations of his students and the languages ​​studied.

An interest to awaken

By questioning the notion of own speaker, we are coming to question Skills required For To teach Foreign languages ​​and cultures in primary school. However, just because a teacher is not a teacher does not mean that learning a foreign language is very difficult in school. Native speaker.

This is not a question of re-creating discussions endlessly. Oppose what The habits of the native speaker. Rather, it may be an exploitation of each other’s qualities. The native teacher is legitimized by his linguistic ability (he is a role model in the practice of language), and by his teaching ability the native teacher (he is a model of learning, he succeeds in learning). Very effective teaching The two will be one to cooperate.

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If students need a role model, why not give them some role models?

One year, Mrs. DuPont introduced her classmate Young Elliott, bilingual, her mother English. Madame DuPont asked Elliott’s mother to come to her son’s class every Tuesday morning during English class. Elliott’s mother often wondered how to set an example for these young learners, who by definition could never become English speakers.

From the first contact with the students, Elliott’s mother notices that the language accuracy about them is not so great. She introduced herself and said she was born in London and wanted to know how she lived there, what her school was like, the canteen, what games she played … Did she go to museums? Did she ever see the Queen during the parade? “Breaking the Color”? Is it really a big party?

Diversify models

Finally, the concerns of young students are not the concerns of their teacher. Let us reconsider the policy agreement that Madame DuPont gave to her young students: was it really different from what she knew? Madame DuPont, if she thinks her students need a role model to learn English well, why not provide them with role models?

Other English-speaking parents may be invited to his or her class even if they live in the suburbs of London or elsewhere, even if they speak English from the capital, the North, the South, or elsewhere. The samples his students were asked to ask were of course many and varied, not limited to one language.

Introduction to LCE Teaching in Elementary School In the simplified version of LCE programs that specialize in miniature form or intermediate education, it is never said to be an adaptation of intermediate education. The evolution of this teaching certainly seems faster now than ever before.

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Expectations are high because social pressure is so high, but are the slides already too close? The results of a recent survey will finally help dispel the myth that the French have no gift in languages- speaking a language is not a gift. But should this be done at the expense of other parameters? With regard to the ease of speaking or the pleasure of the song, the trend slows down. But we still don’t seem to care!

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