Canada - Multicultural education in a multinational society

Canada

In Canada, bilingualism, i.e. training in the two official languages ​​- English and French, - is guaranteed by the Constitution. More than two-thirds of the children of "new immigrants" They do not speak any official languages, and special training is organized for them in English and French. Ottawa provides financial support to the provincial authorities in organizing the teaching of small languages ​​for children from the countries of the parish, as well as for indigenous peoples. As a result, since the late 1980s. similar training in heritage classes became popular throughout the country.

In Canada, bilingual learning in the form of an immersion model (early total immersion ) is widely used - teaching a second language from the very beginning of studies. This model is practiced in two versions. The first (enrichment option) is used by the English-speaking population when learning French. In this case, the training is intensive, in an atmosphere of using French as a language of instruction. The second (transition option) is that children from national minorities are gradually becoming familiar with French and English. Most of the curriculum is taught in the official languages, and the rest is taught in the minority language.

As you can see, with respect to Canada, you can talk not only about bilingual, but also polylingual education. It is a question of training minorities - people from the Old World, as well as Aboriginal people. Thus, the idea of ​​bilingual education in Inuit schools is realized as follows: in the early stages of education (preschool and 1-2 grades) students are taught in their native language. Beginning from 3rd grade and further, students choose English as the language of instruction (or French) and study there until the end of the secondary school. At each level of instruction, a certain amount of time is devoted to the study of individual subjects in their native language or to the study of the Inuit language and culture as subjects. In Inuit schools, a course is pursued for complementary bilingualism aimed at successfully mastering both native and English and (or) French languages, as well as the productive development of subjects of general education.

An important argument in favor of the bilingual program for Inuit with primary education in their native language was an increase in the level of students in social adaptation and ethno-cultural self-esteem. Children engaged in the bilingual program, almost do not experience psychological stress. They have more clearly defined the awareness of belonging to a certain ethnic group and ethno-cultural preferences. The bilingual program for Inuit contributes to the development of the Inuit language and culture. The program enhances the social and cultural status of the Inuit language, bringing it beyond the scope of everyday communication, which is especially important in a situation where it loses its influence under the onslaught of English and French.

Multilingual education in heritage classes for children descendants of the Old World is widespread. In them schoolchildren from small subcultures are attached to the language of their historical homeland. In order to receive state financial support, students in the heritage classes must demonstrate effective mastery of the English and French sections of the program. Heritage classes are organized en masse in six provinces. In them, in addition to English and French, the language of a small ethnic group is taught free of charge. Heritage classes operate outside of school hours or within the framework of educational institutions. Similar educational institutions for Ukrainian Canadians are quite noticeable, for example, in Edmonton. Half of the study time is devoted to the Ukrainian language, literature, history, music.

The popularity of multilingual education in Canada is conditioned by the aspirations of representatives of ethnic communities to master their own cultural ideals, which is difficult without good knowledge of the native language, and to achieve a life success that is impossible without mastering the state languages.

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