|Module to Increase the Awareness of Non-Language-Specialist Students in the UBC Teacher Education Progras to Current Provincial Second Language Policy and Teaching Methods
Recent changes to the BC language policy (1996) now stipulate that students from grade 5 to 8 are to learn a second language. All students - not just language specialists - enrolled in the elementary teacher education program may be called upon to teach any of seven languages, depending on the demographic of the school into which they are hired, regardless of their own language abilities. This project’s objective is to raise awareness of the BC language policy and give these students some basic tools to teach a second language class, with an emphasis on French. We will develop a five-hour module (two hours of lecture, three hours of workshop) to be used within a language education foundations course required for all elementary program students in the teacher education program. The two one-hour lectures will be organized around two videos and communicative activities specifically designed for this population.
The first, a short interactive video (20 min) will use interviews to reveal the impact of this policy for elementary teachers and various strata of the population and bring student-teachers to understand that they may have to cope with the task of teaching a second language even if they do not speak it. The second, produced by the Vancouver School Board and adapted for the lecture, will introduce them to second language classrooms where teachers with various second language ability levels teach classes.
These videos will provide background information and, when paused for the speaking activities, will serve as catalysts for discussion in which viewers are encouraged to connect their personal experiences with languages and language learning to those presented. In the follow-up 3-hour workshop, students will learn various teaching strategies and try them out. After completing this module, they will have the opportunity to register in an elective course of second language teaching methodology. With the infrastructure and resources this project will provide, this module will be self-supporting in future years in that it can be carried out by each instructor in the LANE course, without he support of second language specialists.
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Monique Bournot-Trites, Language Education, Faculty of Education