Should learners use their mother tongue in the classroom?

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Should learners use their mother tongue in the classroom?

The use of the children’s home language is another extremely important element of learning a language. Cummins highlighted that:
  • “bilingualism has positive effects on children’s linguistic and educational development.
  •  The level of development of children’s mother tongue is a strong predictor of their second language development.
  •  Mother tongue promotion in the school helps develop not only the mother tongue but also children’s abilities in the majority school language.
  •  Spending instructional time through a minority language in the school does not hurt children’s academic development in the majority school language.
  •  Children’s mother tongues are fragile and easily lost in the early years of school.
  •  To reject a child’s language in the school is to reject the child.”

Cummins http://iteachilearn.org/cummins/mother.htm Accessed April 2014

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