Category Archives: Multi-lingual education

“Language is a major issue. The tribal child in Bastar has to simultaneously contend with at least three languages: (a) his mother tongue that could be Gondi or Bhatri or Dorli or Dhurvi or Telga or Halbi (b) Halbi, which is the lingua franca in Bastar and (c) Hindi, the official medium of instruction. Add to this English, which is taught from Standard I.” – Uma Ram (Professor & Head Department of English, Kakatiya PG College, Chhattisgarh) in “Issues in Tribal Education in Bastar, Chhattisgarh” (Folklore Foundation, Lokaratna, Volume IV 2011)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=14683

“Medium of instruction shall, as far as practicable, be in child’s mother tongue.” – The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009 quoted in “Primary Education of Tribal Children” by Press Information Bureau, Government of India (Ministry of Tribal Affairs, 9 December 2019)
https://pib.gov.in/Pressreleaseshare.aspx?PRID=1595502
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=16476

“The educational difficulties faced by tribals have been addressed through bilingual or multilingual programmes that start with education in the child’s mother tongue, then transit to the regional or state language, and finally progress to the study of English. This three-language formula, however, remains in an experimental stage, and its practice is limited to isolated pilot projects. […] There are 418 different tribes in India, with even more languages and dialects. Each group is also associated with a specific region through language, food habits, occupational characteristics and geography. To accommodate these diverse and culturally distinct communities with a single educational policy is a mammoth task, verging on the impossible.” –  Boro Baski in “Teaching Santal children” (D+C Development and Cooperation, 2 July 2009)
https://www.dandc.eu/en/article/long-term-success-non-formal-adivasi-school-west-bengal
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=2274

“To be taught in a language other than one’s own has a negative effect on learning. [Starting a child’s education in the mother tongue] allows teachers and students to interact naturally and negotiate meanings together, creating participatory learning environments that are conducive to cognitive as well as linguistic development.”- UNESCO Global Education Monitoring Report 2016 quoted “Why is India obsessed with English-medium education – when it goes against scientific consensus?” by Shoaib Daniyal (Scroll.in 6 August 2020
https://scroll.in/article/969356/why-is-india-obsessed-with-english-medium-education-when-it-goes-against-scientific-consensus
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=7707

“There is no script in most Adivasi languages, they are phonetically driven. In 2018, a dictionary in Gondi was released by Kannada University in Hampi. There is a need to preserve these languages and to ensure that children who have grown up speaking such languages don’t feel left out at schools […] In schools, teachers often have a hard time connecting with students because of the language divide [and] children just kept repeating […] without understanding a word.” – Dada Jokal, author of several books in Gondi and who now teaches school teachers the language in “Chhattisgarh: Tribal languages to be a medium of education in pre-school” (Indian Express, 17 February 2020)
https://indianexpress.com/article/governance/chhattisgarh-education-reforms-tribal-languages-to-be-a-medium-of-education-in-pre-school-6271547/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=22893

“If you map the parts of India where illiteracy is highest, you will find that it matches the parts where the mother tongues of children are different from the official language.” – Ganesh [G.N.] Devy (linguist, Unesco Linguapax laureate and founder of the Vadodara-based Bhasha Research and Publication Trust) in: “How Tribal Kids in MP Are Getting a Chance to Learn in Their Languages” (thebetterindia.com, 2 August 2017)
https://www.thebetterindia.com/110025/books-tribal-languages-help-rejuvenate-school-learning-central-india/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=22755

“[T]he poorer and backward sections of [Gadchiroli district’s Madia Gondi] society tend to think that the state language is a tool to move upward in class and caste hierarchy, that the local, indigenous language is inferior and imitating the upper classes will elevate them in the societal hierarchy. To break this myth, Lok Biradari Ashram School plans to change the language of instruction for kindergarten students from Marathi to Madia.” – Samiksha Godse-Amte in “Nurturing one’s own tongue” (The Hindu, 3 April 2013)
https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/tp-newdelhi/nurturing-ones-own-tongue/article4575333.ece
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=16208

“Many children speak a home language that differs from the language of instruction in education programs. Research confirms that children learn best in their mother tongue as a prelude to and complement of bilingual and multilingual education. […] If they continue to have opportunities to develop their first language skills in secondary school, they emerge as fully bilingual (or multilingual) learners. If, however, children are forced to switch abruptly or transition too soon from learning in their mother tongue to schooling in a second language, their first language acquisition may be attenuated or even lost. Even more importantly, their self-confidence as learners and their interest in what they are learning may decline, leading to lack of motivation, school failure, and early school leaving.” – Unesco report by Jessica Ball titled “Enhancing learning of children from diverse language backgrounds: Mother tongue-based bilingual or multilingual education in early childhood and early primary school years”
UNESCO Mother-tongue based EY 2010.pdf
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=16476

International Mother Language Day (annually observed on 21 February): “Language teaching and particularly multilingual education are a key factor in the development of understanding among peoples and dialogue for peace” – Unesco

How to celebrate Mother Language Day in your school | Read the full post by Unesco for updates >> Schoolteachers Encourage children to use their mother languages to introduce themselves and talk about their families and culture Celebrate culture by having them read … Continue reading

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Improving Bhil children’s reading skills and comprehension: Report on the use of colourful storybooks in a range of Indian languages besides English – Madhya Pradesh

Tulika’s  storybooks were very well received by the students at Kakrana’s Rani Kajal Jeevan Shala (village school). They enjoyed reading them and even understood the stories. They made a considerable impact on both teachers and students and opened the window … Continue reading

Posted in Central region – Central Zonal Council, Childhood and children, Community facilities, Crafts and visual arts, Ecology and environment, Education and literacy, Languages and linguistic heritage, Literature and bibliographies, Modernity, Multi-lingual education, Names and communities, Organizations, Photos and slideshows, Quotes, Revival of traditions, Storytelling, Success story, Women, Worship and rituals | Tagged | Comments Off on Improving Bhil children’s reading skills and comprehension: Report on the use of colourful storybooks in a range of Indian languages besides English – Madhya Pradesh

Jointly creating storybooks in familiar languages for first-generation learners: Suchana, Pratham Books and StoryWeaver – West Bengal

Books take tribal kids back to school Boishakhi Dutt, The Telegraph (Calcutta), 21 June 2018 | Read the full story and view larger images here >> Calcutta: Churki Hansda remembers standing on the road instead of going to school on … Continue reading

Posted in Childhood and children, Community facilities, Eastern region – Eastern Zonal Council, Education and literacy, Languages and linguistic heritage, Libraries, Literature and bibliographies, Multi-lingual education, Names and communities, Networking, Organizations, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Quotes, Storytelling, Success story, Tips | Tagged , | Comments Off on Jointly creating storybooks in familiar languages for first-generation learners: Suchana, Pratham Books and StoryWeaver – West Bengal

eBook | Decade of Indigenous Languages 2022-2032 – United Nations

At least 40% of the 7,000 languages used worldwide are at some level of endangerment. Indigenous languages are particularly vulnerable because many of them are not taught at school or used in the public sphere. Next year, we will start … Continue reading

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Resources for the classroom: Learning from and about India’s tribal communities, their culture and knowledge systems

“[I]t is some of the basic values and ideology imbibed in the traditional tribal socio-cultural milieus that should have been emulated and promoted amongst the non-tribal mainstream, not, as has been going on, the other way round.” Source: ’Who Is … Continue reading

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