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Research & policy updates

Produced by Asia Education Foundation, this digest shares recent research relevant to fostering the development of Asian languages and studies, and intercultural understanding in Australian schools.


June 2015 edition

Policy

General capabilities and cross-curriculum priorities


ACARA has updated the way in which the general capabilities and cross-curriculum priorities are identified on the Australian Curriculum website. This update has been carried out to address perceptions and concerns about a crowded curriculum. ACARA writes:

The result of this update has been general capabilities and cross-curriculum priorities being more appropriately tagged in learning areas. There is now a clear distinction between those that are developed or applied specifically through the content descriptions and those where there is simply an opportunity for teachers to focus on them as suggested in the content elaborations. More

Research

Allender, T. (2014). Teaching India, new notions of citizenship and global education. Teaching History, 48(1), 4-7. 
Summary

This article argues for a greater consideration of teaching Indian history in Australian classrooms, which the author asserts will enrich teaching and learning within the discipline of history. He highlights the many opportunities that teaching Indian history offers to encourage classroom discussions about citizenship and ethics. 

Practical relevance

This article is relevant to the Australian Curriculum: History, the Australian Curriculum: Civics and Citizenship (awaiting final endorsement by Education Council), the Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia cross-curriculum priority, and the general capabilities of Intercultural understanding and Ethical understanding.


Fielding, R. (2015). Multilingualism in the Australian Suburbs: A framework for exploring bilingual identity. Singapore: Springer. 

 
S
ummary

This book introduces the Bilingual Identity Negotiation Framework, which combines the three interconnected elements of sociocultural connection, investment and interaction, to examine bilingual identity development in Australia. In order to explain and support the framework, the author investigates empirically the stories of seven bilingual students from an Australian primary school. This investigation is complemented by a more general analysis of bilingual identity of a whole class of students at the school. The book discussed how these young bilingual children developed their identities in association with their language use at home and at school.

Practical relevance

The insightful discussions contained within the book are relevant to the Australian Curriculum: Languages, in particular The Shape of the Australian Curriculum: Languages. They are also relevant to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (Standard 1: Know students and how they learn).


Fielding, R., & Harbon, L. (2015). Implementing a Content and Language Integrated Learning Program in New South Wales Primary Schools: Teachers' Perceptions of the Challenges and Opportunities. Babel, 49(2).

Summary

This article presents the findings of a project examining how teachers, parents and students in four New South Wales primary schools experienced the implementation of a CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning) program for the National Asian Languages and Studies in School Program (NALSSP) priority languages: Chinese, Indonesian, Japanese, and Korean. The authors discuss, among others, teachers’ views and experiences in relation to CLIL. The findings indicate that implementation of CLIL programs is challenging, but can succeed if a whole-school approach is pursued and if teachers are supported to work collaboratively and develop their understanding and practice of CLIL. 

Practical relevance

This article is relevant to the Australian Curriculum: Languages, in particular The Shape of the Australian Curriculum: Languages. It also relates to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (Standard 1: Know students and how they learn and Standard 6: Engage in professional learning).  


Nunan, D., & Richards, J. C. (Eds.) (2015). Language Learning Beyond the Classroom. New York/London: Routledge. 

Summary

This edited volume discusses the educational opportunities beyond the classroom of language learning from various perspectives and various parts of the world. Linking theory, research and practice, the individual chapters explore how language studies outside the classroom can complement formal instruction and what teachers can do to build on these experiences. The volume contains chapters on, among others, interaction with native speakers, TV as a medium, ICT use and specific out-of-class projects. 

Practical relevance

This article is relevant to the Australian Curriculum: Languages, in particular The Shape of the Australian Curriculum: Languages. It also relates to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (Standard 1: Know students and how they learn).

Disclaimer

The views expressed within this update, or any of the articles it contains, do not necessarily represent those of AEF or the Australian Government Department of Education and Training.

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